Me And My Car

Her car is like her third home

Ms Pamela Tan looks inside her Nissan Qashqai when she cannot find what she wants at home or in the office

The roomy Nissan Qashqai is especially handy for Ms Pamela Tan when she has to transport large items for work.
The roomy Nissan Qashqai is especially handy for Ms Pamela Tan when she has to transport large items for work.PHOTO: DAVID TING

Ms Pamela Tan, 32, is the senior brand manager at Crystal Time Singapore, a watch distribution company that carries the brands Arbutus, Edox, Claude Bernard and Luminox.

"I find that the Luminox brand, which is highly associated with outdoor adventure and the military, relates a lot to my personal character and my choice of car. That's how I ended up with a Qashqai."

She placed an order for the turbocharged 1.2-litre Nissan sport utility vehicle (SUV) at the Singapore Motorshow in January 2015. While she cannot recall the price, she remembers clearly the day she collected her new ride.

"I had a red Toyota Vios for 10 years, since university. On the last day of the Vios' COE (certificate of entitlement), I drove it to Tan Chong Motor (the Nissan dealership) and swopped it on the spot for my new Qashqai."

She adds: "I like the height, which I find makes driving easier. It's good to feel big on the road. You feel safe."

The bachelorette also likes the Qashqai more than the Vios. "The car is smooth next to the Toyota. The Vios was for me to get from point A to point B. I feel more comfortable in the Qashqai."

She appreciates the Nissan's roominess too. "I like the fact that it's a spacious car. It's my third home now - the first is my actual home and the second is my office in Crystal Time Building," she says.

"You can see a lot of my rubbish in the car. If I cannot find anything, I know it's either at home, in the office or in my car."

The Qashqai's spacious cabin also comes in handy for her work.

"Sometimes I do events and it's easier to transport items, such as watch displays and teardrop banners, on my own by folding the backrests. Those banner poles are super long - maybe slightly shorter than a fishing pole, definitely much taller than me," she says.

"I did an event recently and the delivery guys couldn't handle the task that day, so I just put everything in my car."

Her tennis gear is kept in the boot of her vehicle.

She played tennis competitively in school till she turned 19. Thereafter, she played recreational tennis, but stopped doing so when she started work in 2009. She picked up the game again in 2014.

She also enjoys travelling.

"I like self-drive holidays. Sometimes I go alone, other times, with friends and, once in a blue moon, with my father and mother. Anywhere with good scenery."

"About four years ago, I drove alone in Croatia and then met up with my family in Austria after the Baselworld watch show. Two years ago, I did Slovenia, Hungary and Slovakia on one drive trip, in a rental Opel."

She intends to keep her Qashqai for a long time.

"Maybe I'll drive the Qashqai for 10 years. Shopping for a car is a very stressful affair," she says.

Her dream cars indicate that she has been bitten by the SUV bug.

"I love Land Rovers and Range Rovers. Those tank-like, black, square-square, safari ones. I'm sticking to SUVs."

And she is probably sticking to her Nissan SUV.

"I can be quite sentimental about my car. For example, my Toyota Vios saw me through different life stages, from studying in university to starting work. Now with the Qashqai, it's going to see me through different stages in life as well."

• The writer is the editor of Torque, a motoring monthly published by SPH Magazines.

What's in the boot?

The roomy Nissan Qashqai is especially handy for Ms Pamela Tan when she has to transport large items for work.

• Tennis attire and shoes

• Tennis balls and a spare tennis racket

• Watch catalogues and watches

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 25, 2018, with the headline 'Her car is like her third home'. Subscribe