That time of the year has come again and Import bible are holding their spring sale!
Photos by : Neo
We haven’t posted many feature cars recently and its something that we feel quite sheepish about. In the middle of our day jobs, our after-work lives, our aim to shift our website to a better host with a more updated and user friendly layout and our constant search for opportunities to host events for the Singapore car community, we haven’t been taking the time out of our personal lives to search and organize photo shoots for new feature cars.
Our Facebook page however has been absolutely amazing and we can’t express how much we appreciate the love everyone that has liked our page has shown, constantly commenting and sharing the photos we post. We knew the Facebook page was going to hit a milestone of 500,000 likes soon and we wanted to at least have a feature on the website for your viewing pleasure. So we spent 6 hours of our Saturday night driving around searching for locations, getting shouted at by a Caucasian male who thought our cars were too loud while we were adjusting the positions and wetting our pants when we had to drive through a road block during a change of location.
The feature Evo in this post is owned by one of the most supportive friends that has been supporting TheRightWrong from the very beginning. His car was actually one of the first few cars we featured on the site but has recently undergone a complete make over. Unfortunately, he has made the difficult decision to put the car up for sale and we could not let the car get sold before giving it a final photo shoot.
The other Civic you see is owned by our very talented photographer, Neo. His civic which is heavily inspired by the many race civics from around the world sports a custom widebody and custom front bumper. You’ll be seeing more of this car sometime in the near future.
Of recent times there has been various and multiple articles written by many enthusiasts and respected journalist within the community voicing out the issue of discrimination about the kind of cars we drive. These accounts by various individuals have been highlighted mainly through words and first hand accounts, mostly through stories with not much concrete evidence. Lets be honest, if you get LTA officers sent to your carpark, there could have been a very good chance you were causing nuisance and disturbing your neighbours. Its not always that performance cars are innocent as we also recognize there are black sheep among every community.
So this afternoon I received a call from a buddy of mine named Marcus. If you’re familiar with the local car scene you probably would have heard of him. Many of his cars have been featured on magazines and he’s been active within the community for quite some time now. Some of you might have also heard he recently got rid of his Matt silver lotus for a new play thing. A Mitsubishi Evo 9, a car that he has never even driven on the roads since the purchase. He sent us this email with various documents attached to prove his point. Attached below is that exact email.
To: The Right Wrong
This is with regards to a few previous articles in debate of the LTA discrimination against sports vehicle makes.
I have been an active member of the car scene for the past 8 years and have seen the stepped up enforcement of the government against modified vehicles. I always believe in logical reasoning and explaination.
However, i would like to bring to everyone’s attention (media and public) of the recent ‘request’ i have received from LTA with some of my documents to justify my case.
To begin with, i have recently made a purchase of a Mitsubishi Evolution 9 with the sales agreement on the 26th Sept 2012.
I am a very particular and fussy owner and for each purchase of my vehicles, regardless of condition i will do a full spec servicing at my workshop. therefore i left the car at the garage. Knowing that the car will be there for a couple of weeks and i would be doing a vehicle retention number, i removed and discarded the existing car plate and left my car at the workshop.
I have always retained my number plate for my vehicles for the past 8 years. Retention of the number plate was made on 4th Oct 2012.
However since the car has been at the workshop and the new number plate as of today 1st Nov 2012 is still not up yet as i am replacing all the wear and tear parts as this is a 6 year old vehicle.
Very unfortunately, I fell ill shortly after from the 8th Oct 2012 and was thereafter hospitalized and was only discharged on the 25th Oct 2012 with medical leave until 28th Oct 2012.
When i got home after finally being discharged, i received a registered letter from LTA. With date of issue on 22nd Oct 2012 indicating that a report has been made against my number plate within the period of time that i was hospitalised.
This number plate was never on this vehicle before, car was never on the roads since my purchase and i was hospitalized during the period the ‘report’ was being made.
My question now to LTA as i called in to their hotline posting the very same question that they could not give an answer to is,
‘On what grounds/reason is my vehicle requested to be send for inspection?’
If as LTA claims that a report was being made when i have all the documented proof that this vehicle was NEVER on the roads with the reported carplate as well as the fact that i was hospitalized during that period, then on what grounds made is that report actually valid?
If there is no grounds that a report is valid, am i right to conclude that anyone who writes a report in with a random carplate LTA would request for that vehicle for inspection? Or is it selective that just because my make and model is a Mitsubishi Evolution 9?
So if my carplate was submitted twice a month by random people, i would have to go for an inspection 24 times a year?
Would this be the case if my car was a Toyota Altis? It seems to me that LTA would just take anyone’s ‘report’ as valid from my above case.
This car was NEVER driven on the roads with the new retained carplate and could not possibly receive any true and valid reports with the new carplate. I was hospitalised and now there is a request for my vehicle to be inspected when i have not even driven the vehicle on the roads? This is purely ridiculous with no logic or explaination as i have all the black and white proof.
Could someone please enlighten me as it seems to be once again, discrimination against certain particular make and model of vehicle.
The car is currently still being worked on in the workshop, without its number plates and is still undergoing an overhaul. The workshop has cameras and in any case, will be able to prove that the car has never left the workshop since its arrival after purchase.
Marcus is still waiting for a reply from LTA.
What are YOUR thoughts?
In recent months, the media has published several unflattering articles about modified cars. ChannelNewsAsia was the first to publish such an article about vehicle modifications being on the rise.
First they mentioned that lighting and window tinting infringements were the most common offences. They it wrote about unspecified sources that showed “The probability of an illegally modified car going up in flames after encountering an impact has a 70 per cent higher risk relative to cars that did not undergo any illegal modifications.”. Who knew that lights and window tinting would make a car more flammable?
Then some vehicle workshop owner decided to show his “familiarity” with vehicles and said “You (the car) lose a lot of power; there’re a lot of unburnt gas coming out from (the car’s) gaspipe. There’re a lot of things happening to your car. Eventually you see that your car (has) no power, outside concession very high. These are (what) they call wrong illegal modification”.
Trying to understand that statement gave me brain tumour. When properly done, a modified car should not lose power but gain it. Unless by modifications he meant fuel saving devices and all other things that is meant to help you reduce fuel consumption, but those things are by no means illegal. What he meant by “concession very high” left even more scratching their heads. Such statements left many enthusiasts outraged but most brushed it off after several days because most of the enthusiasts who love their cars, will find that what ever was said made no sense.
Everything seemed fine until the TodayOnline published an article about LTA reviewing its framework for harsher penalties with regards to modifications, things started to get serious.
This sparked an outcry on a much larger scale as compared to the Channel NewsAsia because for the first time, our passion and love for cars is genuinely being threatened. In a previous editorial, I have written about the double standards of vehicle modification that has posed a problem to enthusiasts here. Many enthusiasts have left their comments in one of our most read and most commented posts ever, simply because everyone shared the same sentiments.
The issue of illegal modification on the rise is simply the result of LTA increasing their man-power and extended operating hours of the inspection center. When you stop using your hands to swat flies but instead, use a Baygon spray, you obviously would expect to kill more flies.
Mr Gan Thiam Poh then went ahead to generalize that modified vehicles were “were not only noisy but could also pose a danger to other road users if modified incorrectly.” As previously mentioned in the other editorial, there are many instances that modifications can cause potential danger to other road users. There however are also many examples that can be used to show that “illegal” modifications can also improve safety, as mentioned here in Brendan’s letter. He went further to say that all modified cars are “potential troublemakers”. This is criminalizing everyone who has a modified car to deem them as a troublemaker.
What the general public seems to realize is, whether or not a person is a nuisance on the road does not depend on the car they drive. If Bus drivers can cause harm driving at low speeds, should buses be clamped down upon too?
The cherry on top of the cake came when Transport consultant Tham Chen Munn said “This is simply because the intentions of the driver are quite clear: The car will be used beyond its normal operating intention, and this endangers lives,” he said.
This unfair generalization that all cars with illegal modifications (loud exhausts and Day time running lights also deemed illegal) endangers lives.
Omitting all the scientific Mambo Jambo in relation to the center of gravity, geometry and everything else about a car, if it was able to drive with a MAXIMUM cornering speed on a specific corner of 80km/h, accidents are caused by people who over step that boundary and attempt to corner at 90km/h. Do those cars have to be modified before it endangers lives? No.
A modified car however with a lower center of gravity and better handling components (such as a roll cage which is also illegal) might be able to take that corner at 100km/h, accidents would still be caused if the driver attempts to overstep that boundary and corner at 110km/h. Accidents will occur regardless of car, modified or not. It all depends on the driver to be able to understand he vehicle enough to know its limits. But with everything taken into consideration, this does not mean a person with a modified car will attempt to corner at 100km/h at every corner and this is indeed an unfair generalization. What this does for most owners is it gives them a greater stability when taking the corner at 80km/h and there is less likelihood that the owner will lose control at that speed when it is 20km/h under it’s mechanical limit.
Mr Tham went as far to say that authorities should raid workshops and clamp down on modifications, an action which could potentially threaten the livelihood of many Singaporeans. Paya Ubi, Ang Mo Kio Autopoint, Sin Ming Autopoint all filled with people who will have their rice bowls threatened if this action is put into place.
Our friend and editor from 9tro magazine Brendan recognized the seriousness of this issue and stayed up till 4am last night to draft a letter to LTA in rebuttal to this insanity that has been suggested to the transport minister. Enthusiasts have also taken it upon themselves to start a Facebook page to raise awareness about the issues https://www.facebook.com/StopCriminalisingCarEnthusiastsSG. The page started less then 24 hours ago saw over 530 likes and the number has been climbing steadily. Help and support these causes because the very essence of our love for motoring is currently being threatened.
Hopefully some where along the chain of command will recognize that modified cars are not the problem, but instead more should be done in promoting driving road safety instead. Afterall its the people behind the wheels that cause danger, not the car.
In response to all the articles that have been criminalising owners with vehicle modifications, our friend Brendan from 9tro Magazine has written an open letter with a very sound argument about modifications. Hopefully it will reach the correct people to put in place a positive change with regards to modifications!
Link to note here.
I respond to the article mentioned below:
ARTICLE HERE: http://www.todayonline.com/Singapore/EDC120823-0000034/A-need-for-harsher-penalties
If I read correctly, then the LTA’s Transport Consultant Tham Chen Munn argues that illegally-modified cars “endanger lives” because they are used “beyond (their) normal operating intention”, and therefore there is a need for harsher penalties to be given to owners of these cars. Let me expand the premises of his argument further, and point out the gaping logical holes in this man’s thesis.
There are three logical steps within the clauses that make up Mr. Tham’s argument for harsher penalties; they are:
1) If a car is illegally-modified, it is assumed to be used “beyond normal operating intention” and
2) If these cars are illegally-modified and assumed to be used “beyond normal operating intention”, they are assumed to be “endangering lives”.
Finally, Mr. Tham includes liability (i.e. intention) on the part of the owners of these cars. His argument in totality is therefore:
If these cars are illegally-modified and assumed to be used “beyond normal operating intention”, they are assumed to be “endangering lives”. Drivers that own such “illegally-modified” wholly intend to do all of the above, and therefore the drivers of these cars must be presecuted with harsher punishments.
To understand why Mr. Tham’s argument is fallacious, it is extremely important that we must first draw the context of the “legal” and “illegal” aftermarket modification scene in Singapore.
For those of you whom are unaware, workshops in Singapore can pay the LTA a sum of money to get aftermarket JASMA- or TUV-approved parts “approved” as “legal” performance upgrades, with matching registration and prior sound tests performed to ensure that these parts aren’t too noisy. There are, however, no such checks and balances in terms of power upgrades, so as long as your car has “legal” aftermarket parts, you could make 1,000bhp in your little Vios and it would be legal.
These performance upgrades include more freely-flowing aftermarket exhaust systems, turbocharger upgrades, ECU retunes and the like. Therefore, an “illegal” upgrade simply refers to parts that have not been “approved” by the LTA; your unapproved aftermarket exhaust could be softer than a “legal” exhaust, but it would still be considered “illegal”, and you’d still get a $500 (or more) fine in the mail if you get caught.
With this context drawn, Mr. Tham’s argument has no basis. This is how:
1. If a car is “illegally-modified”, it is assumed to be used beyond its normal intention; however, a “legally-modified” car is assumed FALLACIOUSLY to still be used within its normal intentions, DESPITE THE FACT THAT BOTH CASES CAN INVOLVE INSTALLING AFTERMARKET PERFORMANCE-ENHANCING PARTS ON CARS.
Here, some real examples of how this absurd differentiation between “legal” and “illegal” modifications bring about the fallacious conclusion that illegally-modified cars are used “beyond normal operating intentions”:
One can have a J’s Racing 60mm exhaust system for the Honda S2000 in Titanium approved for use and therefore legal, but the SAME J’s Racing exhaust system, used in the SAME application in an S2000, in the SAME 60mm diameter made of Stainless Steel is not approved, and therefore deemed illegal.
The horsepower gain and noise level increase both cases is almost the same; yet, simply because one item is approved while the other is not, the Titanium system is running within “normal operating intentions” and the Stainless-steel item is “illegal” and therefore beyond normal operating intentions.
In a similar case:
The owner of the latest Audi can have the brightest HID headlights and LED daytime running lights installed on the car, running within “normal operating intentions”, simply because these items are factory-installed; yet, aftermarket lighting items exhibiting similar voltage and light outputs as factory items are deemed “illegal”, simply because they did not come standard with the car.
Even if there is a justified need for upgrading the lights on one’s old car to something equivalent to a modern standard (safety for bikes and pedestrians, better vision at night), it is deemed wholly “beyond normal operating intentions” simply because it is not standard equipment.
When one considers the examples stated above, it is easy to see that “legal” and “illegal” modifications here are distinguished NOT based on measurable and quantifiable fields such as decibel ratings, horsepower increases or voltage and light outputs, but merely via a piece of paper workshops used some money to attain.
Therefore, Mr. Tham cannot conclude that “illegally-modified” cars are used “beyond normal operating intentions”, since legal and approved modifications can offer the same “beyond normal” operational parameters quite easily. Until the two can be concretely distinguished, there is no basis for Mr. Tham’s argument.
In fact, by imposing harsher penalties, and even going so far as to fine workshops that deal with such “illegal” parts, the LTA is simply killing the already shrinking aftermarket industry here – and the many jobs, careers and livelihoods it provides.
2. The second fallacy occurs when Mr. Tham states that cars operating “beyond normal operating intention” are assumed to be “endangering lives”. Let’s assume for now that the first assertion is true – that illegally-modified cars are “beyond normal operating intention”.
Even if that were the case, Mr. Tham’s second assertion that they are therefore “endangering lives” is a hasty generalisation: Just because a car is modified illegally, does not make it 100% more life-threatening. Roll-cages of any sort are deemed an illegal modification, even though they add to structural rigidity and therefore safety to the occupants in the event of a roll-over.
Furthermore, the half roll-cage found as standard equipment on a Porsche 911 GT3RS, BMW M3 GTS and Renault Megane R26R are all considered legal since they came from the factory – more evidence of the double standards applied to the terms “legal and “illegal” here.
3. Most importantly, however, here we must also acknowledge the third and most implicit assertion Mr. Tham is trying to make – the clause that seeks to address the liability of the driver’s intention behind applying illegal modifications.
Basically, he is trying to say that when every owner that modifies his or her car illegally, or “beyond normal operating intention”, he or she has complete wilful intention to race the car on the streets and endanger lives. He or she must therefore face harsher penalties for applying these modifications.
Here, the fallacy is that correlation does not mean causation. Yes, we are related to the problem of endangering lives, but we do not cause them wholly. We cannot deny that SOME car enthusiasts who illegally modify their car go street racing – yes, some of us are guilty of engaging in a little speedy thrill from time to time on a deserted road, and some of us can confess to endangering lives as well.
This does not mean, however, that all who modify cars illegally are manic rubber-burning street racers that drive recklessly and endanger lives – so why harsher punishments for all? Following the same logic, should all of us be punished for murder just because some of us have murdered?
Would it not be more fair to everyone if the people that get caught for street racing receive the harshest penalties, while the rest of us that carry customised modifications on our cars, but keep our crazy antics to the racetrack, be left alone?
Mr. Tham should re-think his assertions and arguments after considering the evidence above. In summary:
1. “Legal” modifications and “illegal” modifications do not have measurable and quantifiable distinctions – therefore, the assertion that illegally-modified cars are assumed to be used “beyond normal operating intention” cannot stand, since “legal” modifications offer similar “beyond normal” operating parameters.
2. Cars functioning “beyond normal operating intentions” may not necessarily be “endangering-lives”. Many illegal aftermarket upgrades serve to make the car safe, too.
3. Not all of us that illegally modify our cars are street racers – so why should all of us be punished for what a minority are responsible for (i.e. endangering lives)? Punish those that deserve punishment harshly – but leave the rest of us alone.
It is not very often that I will bother to take the time to do an editorial for the blog. After all, TheRightWrong has never been my personal blog to begin with, the very reason why I seldom put pictures of my own personal car or anything else on the blog. It has always been a blog about cars, culture and especially the best that Singapore has to offer.
This time however, I am making an exception because I strongly feel the need to voice my thoughts. It is with regards to something every Singaporean enthusiast is going through at this point of time. Enforcement.
Certainly, every country has its problems with enforcement. Even if the overseas countries has more lenient regulations with modifications, “Import” tuners will always be on the wrong side of the law. Especially after we have been given the image as street racers with a series of fast and furious shows, people probably imagine us racing with bikini clad women lining the streets and a girl tossing up her bra to signify the start. Not that we would mind if there WERE scantily clad women all the time. It would make owning a performance car seem a lot more tolerable with the current situation.
If there were women, you can be sure it will shoot you to fame on Stomp, a place that some how teaches all Singaporeans to show zero tolerance to everything. This zero tolerance thing should be quite obvious when spy shots of a person sleeping on an MRT is considered gossip worthy material.
What has been tormenting us in the recent months has been the LTA enforcement stepped up on its aggression in hunting us down. They’re not even just stopping and suspecting cars of illegal modifications any more. They have been literally HUNTING the performance cars down as though Mas Selamat is hiding underneath one of our cars.
My words may seem biased considering I am also a fellow performance car owner. To all people that are not performance car owners reading this, don’t misunderstand my intentions. I have nothing against the Traffic Police and LTA doing their jobs. In fact, I was actually delighted to hear reports of the Traffic Police conducting operations on heavy vehicles several days back (HERE). These heavy vehicles have been hogging almost every lane on expressways except the extreme right one (which is left empty for your everyday road hogger) for far too many months. I am very glad to know that LTA officers are doing their jobs, especially with issues that compromises safety. Too often you see overload lorries that drop a large load of sand and rocks at the slighest bump, leaving little land mines road users jam on the brakes to avoid. These stones that get shot up into the car behind leaving windscreen cracks or damaging the paint on your own car has been and always will be a pain. Which is why it is a good thing that they step up enforcement and do their jobs.
Modifications wise, a simple example could be an excessively dark window tint. It certainly makes the car look good but it is genuinely ridiculous to drive in the night. Its almost impossible to see anything that doesn’t have indicator lights, which is why it compromises safety. You might argue that all it takes is some getting used to but then again, it still poses danger to bicycles or the cars that forget to turn on their headlights. Being completely logical in my argument of issues that compromise safety, I am going to ruffle a lot of feathers but I have to agree, these cars deserve to get stopped. These are perfectly logical rules that have been set on LTA’s part.
The issue with the strict enforcement recently has been the hassling of all cars performance. Proof can be found over various forums of posts complaining about the trouble LTA has been giving car owners. Multiple encounters of owners that drive fully street legal and even stock performance cars getting stopped. Not just once, or twice but one forum member has been stopped as many as four times within a month despite being fully LTA approved. During these stops, they are checked for illegal parts and everything else which wastes the owners time, especially during office hours. Let me illustrate personal encounter with an enforcement officer to explain my point.
A few months back I was stopped by an LTA officer. The incident occurred at 6pm with heavy traffic and I spotted him stopped at a bus stop 4 lanes away. The very second I passed, he hopped on his bike and cut across 4 lanes to ask me to pull to the left and stop my car. Admittedly, I was caught for having an unapproved sticker type licence plate. I have since reverted back to an approved licence plate. What I mean to illustrate with this incident is, 4 lanes away in heavy 6pm traffic. There is really no possibility that he could have spotted my licence plate before stopping me. The only logical explaination I can conclude from this incident is I was stopped simply because of the type of car I drive, before looking for things which I could be fined for.
I must admit, the sticker type licence plate is indeed a safety issue as well which is why I have no complains about being fined. Thinking from a logical point of view, it is indeed an identification mark for a car in incidents like a certain red Ferrari beating a traffic light. Traffic cameras would be unable to identify the car if the licence plate was not visible.
This incident however can illustrate the things that many car owners who drive stock or fully street legal cars have to tolerate on a daily basis, simply being stopped for the type of car you drive is stereotypical and getting stopped 4 times in a month seems to be quite extreme.
All of this hassle performance owners face can be highlighted even further when an Evo owner, a car that comes factory fitted with a Turbo charger got sent a court summon for having a Turbo charger fitted.
The question about whether there is a clear guideline in the things they look for or is it simply up to an officer’s discretion arises.
I did have a short chat with the officer that stopped me regarding the recent heat about performance cars being hunted even in home carparks.
He also said such these trips are usually the result of resident complains and they would not usually make trips to carparks just to hunt for cars to fine. There you go,yet another circumstances brought about by the Singaporean culture of having zero tolerance.
So many people may argue that the simple solution to all these problems is to be fully LTA approved or completely stock and avoid such problems. Many of the cars featured on this website are garage queens as well, parked at home and only utilized on weekend for track duties up north. Not everybody has the luxury of owning two cars which is why I am certain many car owners aim to be fully street legal / LTA approved within their means.
Which brings me to the main issue of being LTA approved, car owners like us are given little, if not zero room for negotiation when facing such matters. Using exhaust systems as example, there is only a very small variety of parts that are LTA approved. This is because there are so many certificates required by LTA before an exhaust can be approved that it is practically impossible for an average car owner to perform.
A “Tomei Manifold Set” for Evos only has 50 pieces which has been approved for road use in Singapore. Even if you bought the exactly the same thing from the same company, the same model, the same size and for the same car with all emissions and decibels within the legal limit, you would not be able to get the set LTA approved. Only those 50 pieces which were sent for inspection by the importing workshop is considered “LTA approved”.
Is this to symbolize that all other manifolds and exhaust systems by other manufacturers are of lousy quality?
Take renown exhaust and manifold maker from the USA, Full Race. They build such a high quality manifold that they are confident enough to offer a life time warranty to the original purchaser of the manifold. Yet it is almost impossible to get the full race manifold approved even if it passes all sound and emissions tests, simply because it lacks a number of certificates and letters required to get LTA approval. A certain level of discretion in dealing with such matters would make life a lot simpler for every single enthusiast out there. After all, sound limit and emission levels are things that any country has. It certainly would not be pleasant if a show off in a crappy car and a loud exhaust kept revving his engine “LEGALLY” with the echoes travelling through the entire neighbourhood late in the night.
This lack of discretion is the reason why any normal exhaust (including stock) which has been welded for repairs, due to cracks caused by wear and tear and exposure to heat and cold is considered illegal because it has been “tampered with”. I would think that such issues would be a lot less common if Full Race manifolds were allowed for road use! (but thats just personal opinion).
Next presents the issue of having double standards. Day time running LED lights installed by car owners are also considered illegal for being “too glaring” but the exact same lights installed by vehicle manufacturers are approved. Why? The explaination is “simply because it is installed by the manufacturer”. Same goes with the issue of roll bars in the Porsche GT3RS while roll bars installed in any other car is and has always been a grey area. Rules that have not been specified clearly by LTA guidelines but car owners can still be issued fines for. The LTA guideline for modifications is certainly filled with grey areas that should be properly clarified.
It is not just the enforcement that holds such stereotypical thinking but this carries on far beyond the law. Many instances during our photo shoots, we were asked to leave by security guards, building owners and many others just because we taking photos. Even if we have paid for the per entry parking and have only been there for less then 20 minutes, we are always told to leave immediately each time we get noticed. I would dare bet my last dollar that this scenario would be vastly different had it been a super car like a Lamborghini Aventador or a Ferrari 458 that we were taking photos of.
This brings me to my point of this editorial and why I have been voicing out the issues that plague us enthusiasts. The stereotyping of performance cars by everyone has been pushing many owners to the limit where they decide on giving up the cars they paid so much for. Enforcement stereotyping, aided by complains of your regular whining Singaporeans about such cars, reinforcing the need for enforcement to get even stricter has been horrifying.
What these owners are forced to give up to avoid all the hassle are the cars they spent so much time, effort, love and money on. They end up settling for a daily car like a BMW where they can drive in peace without having to watch the mirrors every 5 seconds hoping not to spot a big white bike with red blinkers behind them. Having to drive in such fear of being hassled even when most of the true performance / car enthusiasts I know abide by the law when driving. So much more then the reckless zig-zagging of countless luxury cars I have seen driving like its their grandfather’s road. Of course as with everything, there will always be a number of black sheep within every community.
So how far is too far before you reach your limit and succumb to the pressure of giving up the car you dedicated much of your savings to. How far will you allow yourself to be pushed by enforcement and hassled until you finally give up your desires?
I speak for myself and several other like minded individuals I have conversed with but we have long envied the overseas car scenes. The USA, Australia and even Malaysia where they have their own designated track and monthly gatherings openly. Our dreams of a Changi track was nothing more then a façade and holding car gatherings always seem to instil the thoughts of attracting the wrong kind of attention, deterring everyone thinking to participate.
Its not just TheRightWrong crew that shares this vision about having a car culture that we can be enjoy openly and proudly, instead of having to hide our existence and constantly having to worry about getting complained about on Stomp by annoying people who can’t seem to just be a little bit less nosy and more tolerant.
Which is why I spent the time to write this editorial. I sincerely urge all of you to not give up hope no matter how bleak it seems now. Giving up your cars will not solve the problem for any of the existing enthusiasts that love their cars so very dearly. Instead, hold on to your cars and have a little hope that the Singaporeans and society will mature and have a bit more tolerance for cars like ours. It is always the hope that over time, this little bit of car culture will be embedded into our society, just like how Japan values their motoring. A society that can accept modified cars and share it with the general public. People will willingly accept such cars, where in New Zealand race cars were escorted through public roads by the police to raise money for a good cause.
It cannot be a single effort that changes the general perception of the local car culture, but it can only happen with a united effort. Have a presence strong enough and hopefully, there will come the day that LTA would actually be willing to interact with the community to work out a reasonable and clearer list of specifications to follow to allow modifications on our vehicles, instead of just pressuring everybody into fearing driving their cars out or worst, to change their cars.
Afterall our car prices are one of the highest in world.and it should not be a crime for us to want to customize our cars for a more enjoyable drive. The hustle and bustle of city life is already stressful enough and there really is nothing like an enjoyable cruise home, with the windows down and listening to the drone of that wonderful exhaust note, in a car that can put a wide smile on your face each time you drive it.
Words by : Ben Wong, Photos by : Neo, RandyF & Blackwater Photography. Model : Chloe Ang
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