Roush Performance like all niche automotive companies has been challenged to make a go in the past few years during our economic storms. Recently, Roush has been showing some creativity by exporting their brand of hotted up Mustangs. Roush Mustangs have been available in parts of Europe for some time, but they are now making a splash in the Middle East.
Earlier this year Roush Performance unveiled a version of the 2011 5XR Mustang in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) called the Shamal 500R. The local marketing term Shamal is named after the legendary sand storm causing winds that blow across the deserts of Persian Gulf states. It would be akin to calling a car Hurricane or Tornado here in the United States, not uncommon.
The Roush Shamal 500R is loaded up almost identical to a state side 2011 Roush 5XR including a 525hp RoushCHARGED 5.0 liter V8, Roush exterior and interior upgrades, full Roush suspension, upgraded brakes and 20″ chrome wheels. Cooper RS3 tires sit on all four corners.
The Shamal 500R comes with unique graphics that are toned down slightly from their American counterparts. Special badges on the deckled and on the center console say Shamal. An interesting note of diplomacy is the American flag background stamped into the metal plaque on the console. Roush Performance performs their conversions on a version of the Mustang chassis built for export to the Middle east and ships completed cars over seas. The cars feature upgraded cooling components to deal with the harsh heat and desert driving conditions.
The main dealerships in the UAE to handle the Shamal 500R according to our sources are Al Tayer Motors and Premier Motors. They are listed as the official UAE dealers for Roush Performance products in the region. They also say they will be offering a full catalog of Roush Performance Parts along with the cars themselves.
To start, there will only be 15 of the Shamal 500R Mustang coupes offered. Pricing in Dubai starts at approximately Dhs 250,000 ($68,000 US). A glass roof version will cost Dhs 260,000 ($71,000).
While America is not always a welcome subject in parts of the Middle East, American muscle cars have been rising in popularity in parts of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. It is not uncommon in these countries to see modern Mustangs and Camaros driving the streets.
Ford and GM have increased exports of muscle cars to these countries in the past couple of years. A rising class of moderately wealthy young consumers have been eating them up. Roush Performance has seen this trend and is slowly testing the waters with their top Mustang offering. What better way to win the hearts of people around the world than through the beautiful rumble and feel of an American muscle car.