In order to vary the themes, here is a new article: the cars in the countries we are passing through.
The cars are pretty much the same as in Europe but as we went further east, people got poorer and the cars were more basic.
What strikes us first is the amount of Peugeot. They must represent at least 60% of all the cars. The second main brand is called Iran Khodro (Iranian Horse).
Most Peugeot cars are 405 (90%), but we can also spot a couple of 206. For Iran Khodro, the most famous model is the old Paykan. It has been here for a while, it looks like the old Lada! Its fuel consumption is estimated at about 18 liters for 100km!! No you are not dreaming! The government has even given money to Iran Khodro to stop its production. There are also some more modern versions like the Samand, but its engine is a 405 one.
But let’s go back to our dear 405 as there are several models: the "405" is the basic version, the "Pars" is the high end version, and, last but not least, for the crazy people, there is the "Rea", a 405 equipped with a Paykan engine!! But there is even better than that: some Paykans are equipped with an old Peugeot 504 engine, they are called Paykageot!
We also saw some lovely Mercedes, BMW, Ferrari, etc. For the rich Iranians who don’t know what to do with their money.
The most popular brand is Daewoo which holds probably 75% of the market. A couple of other Japanese and Korean brands like Toyota and Kia can also be seen. The car that is mainly sold is the Nexia Daewoo, a medium size car which is far from beautiful. Still, its value hovers at around 17,000$. We also saw a lot of small vans from different brands (Korean and Japanese).
Like in Turkmenistan, the queen of the cars is the Nexia Daewoo, closely followed by the small Damas van also from Daewoo. We also see more and more copies of these mini-vans from China. A lot of tourists travelling with tour operators are using bigger vans from Toyota, Daewoo or Kia.
In Bangkok, we notice a lot of modern cars, most of them saloon cars or 4x4. The most popular brand is Toyota, with its "urban 4x4", the Fortuner, its luxury saloon car, the Camry and its smaller saloon, the Altis also called Corolla.
The new Toyotas are actually very good looking. It is amazing to see how Toyota has improved in that respect, especially with the new Camry. The design now looks closer to the Lexus one.
Outside the big cities, the pick-up truck is the king. Again, most of the cars are from Japan and Korea: Toyota, Mazda, Isuzu, and only once in a while do we see a Ford.
Also, we start seeing bicycles again. We hadn’t seen any since Europe.