Me And My Car

Actress' compact crossover is her 'happy space'

Actress Munah Bagharib uses her Honda HR-V as a mobile wardrobe and to transport video equipment.
Actress Munah Bagharib uses her Honda HR-V as a mobile wardrobe and to transport video equipment.PHOTOS: YANA GAGARIN

In the television series 128 Circle: Shaking Legs, Munah Bagharib plays a filial daughter who struggles to keep her father's walking-tour business going.

In real life, the 32-year-old actress, host and content creator hardly has time to "shake legs" (a colloquial term for taking it easy).

As the bachelorette is always on the move, she needs a practical car which not only gets her to shoots and rehearsals, but can also store things she requires for work.

For this, she says her Honda HR-V, which she bought five years ago, is the perfect ride.

She uses the compact crossover to transport video equipment. It is also her mobile wardrobe - the boot is loaded with shoes and bags for quick changes between assignments.

Munah has named her ride "Don Lino" because she sees a resemblance to the shark antagonist voiced by actor Robert de Niro in the animated film Shark Tale (2004).

The car is also where she takes a breather. "My lifestyle gets hectic. Sometimes, when going from place to place, I just need a moment to collect my thoughts and breathe, so I just sit in the car," she says.

Calling the car her "happy space", she adds: "I start the engine, put on my music and I am off. I love driving to a good tune as it keeps my energy and mood up."

Her first ride was also a Honda - a Jazz hatchback.

Honda cars have always been in her family, who has owned models such as the Accord and the Civic.

Munah describes her HR-V as "a tough cookie that does not require any babying at all". With almost 106,000km on the odometer, it has not required much maintenance apart from the usual scheduled servicing.

Her love of driving was sparked from a young age. "I remember watching my parents behind the wheel and being fascinated by how they were in control of this powerful machine," she recalls.

Like her character in 128 Circle, Munah, who is of Arab descent, is also a filial daughter.

As a child, she was driven by her mother to school, the mall and outings with friends. Now, she ferries her mother around. She considers it their bonding time, just like in the old days.

In 2018, Munah took part in Celebrity Car Wars by activeTV, a reality show in which Asian celebrities face off in a series of driving challenges.

"I loved the speed and adrenaline rush and it was one of the craziest experiences," she says.

One of her dream cars is the Honda Civic Type R, a hot hatch. She also has eyes for a Range Rover because she likes big cars.

"Maybe it is to compensate for me being short," she jokes.

Her HR-V has about half of its certificate of entitlement left.

"We will see how it goes when the time comes," she says.


  • What's in the boot?

  • • Shoes

    • Bags

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 03, 2021, with the headline 'Actress' compact crossover is her 'happy space''. Subscribe