The Lamborghini Aventador, in local police colours, was shown off in the forecourt of Dubai Mall, the city’s most upmarket shopping plaza.
A picture was shown off on the service’s Twitter feed, with the caption: “Latest Dubai Police patrols, now at your service.” It was widely re-tweeted with the hashtag “#onlyinDubai”.
Local media suggested the £260,000 car, which has a V12 engine, a maximum speed of 217mph and accelerates from 0-60mph in 2.9 seconds, would be more used as a marketing device than as a standard patrol car.
The city’s police chief, Dhahi Khalfan Tamim, is one of the more public relations-aware officials of the region, and is closely tied to the ruling family, with its vision for the city as an international playground for the wealthy.
However, the car is being shown off at the same time as the police are in the middle of a campaign to curb the wilder excesses of the city’s largely young, male, drivers, who frequently use the United Arab Emirates desert motorways as a racetrack.
Extra fines and even threats of imprisonment for those caught speeding at more than 200 kilometres per hour (124mph), who make up 15 per cent of the total, have
recently been unveiled. Standard fines for speeding work out at no more than £100-150.
The campaign has not been without its critics. “One-sixty is not fast in some places,” one local man, Ali Izzat, told a local newspaper. Although the speed limit is 120 kmph (75mph), fines on the fastest stretches kick in at 160 kmph (99mph).
“If the roads are all clear, and it’s late and dark, why do I need to drive slow and risk even falling asleep when I can drive quicker to get home?” Another Emirati said: “I don’t think it is fair that they risk losing their jobs for driving above 200 kmph.
“Every car can easily go above 200 kmph. It is better to raise awareness in this regard instead of imposing such a harsh rule.”
The police have already begun using a new Chevrolet Camaro SS (top speed: 157mph, 0-60mph: 4.3 seconds) as their first weapon in the campaign.