Published on September 19, 2007
Working in the same business for a long time can create familiarity and habits, but this is not the case for Phaiboon Pisuthwacharakul. Even though he has been in the tyre business for over three decades, comfort rather than high performance is the deciding factor for the car racer-turned-businessman when buying vehicles.
Phaiboon is the owner of RPT Tire.
"Many people assume from my character and past career that I would prefer powerful, high-speed autos. They often guess wrongly what brand of car I drive, but just imagine the torture you feel when you drive a racing car that has a strong suspension system.
"It is even more painful if you drive it long distances. You feel numbness in your rear when you get out of the car. That's why I pick cars that ride in comfort," he said.
He now drives a Honda Accord 2004 model, which is powered by a 2.4-litre engine.
"I thought this model had an attractive design, even though it was launched several years ago. Its cabin is comfortable, the design is still modern and the engine is not too large to consume large amounts of fuel. It is great for city driving. I think it suits me very well. It is not cool and it's actually difficult if we drive high-performance cars in daily life," Phaiboon said.
Many racers do not use powerful vehicles during their daily life because they want to relax, he said.
"However, they occasionally drive high-performance cars on holidays because racers usually do not have only one car. For instance, I also have a Mazda RX7 to drive when I feel like something unusual," he said.
Phaiboon is not a big fan of European vehicles, as he raced Japanese cars for a long time and has developed a deeper insight into them. "Most important, it is easy to buy spare parts for Japanese cars."
"I consider many aspects of cars - not only luxury. Many powerful cars have problems, particularly European cars, if we let them sit idle for a long time," he said.
"Whatever type of car we choose to drive, we should think about whether it is really what we want."
The Luxury LS 460 is a wonderfully comfaortable car fitted with all mod cons, althoough not necessarily the most fun vehicle to drive.