My Rental Car in Iceland

Michael R. Cruz Dubai Photographer Automotive Photographer Advertising Photographer

This is my rental car in Iceland, looking great isn’t she?!  Well, this is not actually the car I booked online but when I arrived, the rental company (Cars Iceland) told me they upgraded my car from a 2014 Toyota RAV4 Diesel (the car I booked)  to a brand new 2015 Mercedes GLK 220 CDI 4-Matic Diesel.  At first I was like, “Really? Why? Any additional Charge?”, they said no, same cost, same everything, it also comes with a free GPS, so why the heck not. I was not convinced until I returned the car and yeah, they really didn’t charged me anything extra; no hidden fee whatsoever.  If you are going to Iceland, I highly recommend them, you can check their website here.  They have the best prices as well; all their cars comes with unlimited mileage, all insurance are included and most of the 4×4 comes with free GPS, at least it was like that when I rented (June 2015).   They are also located very close to the Keflavic Airport, just a 5-minute walk.

About the car, it drove smoothly and came with all the Mercedes niceties like leather seats, premium sound system, all-wheel drive and my favorite feature: heated seats, which I found really useful in Iceland.  I was set on getting a diesel car because I will be driving long distances and it will be really expensive to go for a gasoline car; although the gasoline and the diesel prices are almost the same in Iceland, diesel usually lasts longer than gasoline and since its cold in Iceland, diesel doesn’t require high-voltage ignitions, so I wouldn’t have problem with cold starts; in theory diesel is more reliable (specially the new generation ones).  Well, at least I didn’t face any issues with the car, it made the whole trip and long drive so comfy and nice; lucky me 🙂

I did a lot of research regarding car rentals in Iceland, I was first thinking of getting a cheaper car from Sad Cars Rentals (I have seen them being recommended by a lot of travelers in Iceland) but after doing some forum research, I learned that having an unreliable car in Iceland is probably one of the worst thing you can do there, so I’m glad I did go with a newer car.  There’s not a lot of people driving around Iceland and most of the time, I was the only one on the road, so being stranded is definitely going to be a nightmare.

I needed a 4×4 because I was planning on going to Highlands (gravel road) areas that a sedan car might not be enough and I had a lot of bags and other gears to bring with me.  As a mentioned on my previous post, knowing what I know now, I would have rented a small camper van so I could camp out on the locations I wanted to photograph.  But if you are going to be in Iceland for 5 days or so, or just going around the Golden Circle, I think a normal sedan or a small 4×4 is more than enough.  By the way, not all 4×4 are allowed to go to Highlands or gravel road, so please check with your rental company first.

Here is a before and after look: (just drag the slider)

Post processing:

  • 2 exposures digital blending
  • Curves adjustment layers
  • Dodging and burning
  • Spot healing / patch tool


Fujifilm X-T1
Fujinon 10-24mm

No lighting equipment used, just natural light.

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