Here’s Why Many Nigerians Will Rather Buy a Foreign Used Vehicle

The number of used cars for sale in Nigeria offers a huge market for the automobile industry in Nigeria.

The sale of ‘tokunbo’ cars, as they are popularly called, has always existed in the Nigerian society and the coming of classifieds sites like only gave a more formal structure to its existence.  This notwithstanding, there is still the discrepancy between Nigerian used cars and foreign used cars.

Different factors beyond the fact that one is being imported define the reasons why buyers may prefer one over another.  The following are some of the reasons why people choose foreign used cars over the Nigerian counterparts.

Advantages of Foreign Used Cars

Foreign used cars are usually in good condition
Foreign used cars are considered to be more neatly used than Nigerian used cars. And the reason(s) for this are not totally unconnected with the bad state of roads in Nigeria among others. Whether or not they were purchased as brand new, it is the case that they have better usage life than what obtains in Nigeria. For this reason therefore, it is cheaper to fix or “pimp” up a foreign used car than a Nigerian one after purchase.

There is more variety with foreign used cars.
What this means is that you are more likely to find your choice of tokunbo car as a foreign used car than a Nigerian used car.

The availability of Carfax information very easily makes foreign used cars the preferred especially when trust is an issue in the Nigerian used car market. What Carfax information does is provide the vehicle history which gives valuable insight on if the car is reconstructed or salvage for example.

First body
With foreign used cars, there is an 80% chance that the car one is buying is in its first body. So the deceitful neat body and interior will not be the case

Foreign used cars are cheaper
Yes, it is usually cheaper when you are buying directly by yourself from abroad


Disadvantages of Foreign used cars

Getting a foreign used car usable for the Nigerian roads and by the Nigerian laws may be a little more tedious than buying a Nigerian used car. From changing to left-hand drive in some cases to getting the necessary licenses and registrations done. It is also more cumbersome especially because of port clearance.

It is more expensive to buy a foreign used car from someone who is reselling in Nigeria.

Advantages of Nigerian Used Cars.

In the long run and when one considers the total cost, it is cheaper to buy Nigerian used cars.

You also save cost on the registration of the vehicle.( If you wish to change the existing number you have to pay a token but if you wish to retain it then you save cost)

Disadvantages of Nigerian Used Cars

With Nigerian used cars, there is a higher probability that you are not the first user of the car. What this means is that, you are likely purchasing a foreign used car that has been bought and used in Nigeria and is now being resold.

Considering 1 above and the poor state of roads in Nigeria, you are very likely to pay more to fix a Nigerian used car after purchase

The deceitful neat body and interior is a thing when buying Nigerian used car. There is a 60% possibility of  the car being refurbished, not coming with its first body or interior and generally need more serious repairs than is masked by a neat appearance

There are no databases for vehicle history (car fax). Hence there is little or no way to tell the actual state of the car beyond what the selling owner is telling you; which is why it is important to always go with a trusted mechanic.

In the Nigerian used car market, there is a limited choice when it comes to variety.


Written by How Africa

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