5 Myths Nigerians Still Believe About Used Cars.

All Tokunbo Cars are better than Nigerian used cars.

Number 1 on the list of 5 Myths Nigerians still believe about used cars is that all tokunbo cars are better than Nigerian used ones. Without putting a stat to this, most Nigerian car buyers are sceptical about buying a Nigerian used car and you can understand why. The common questions a seller is asked are:

What is wrong with it and please be honest with me?

Why are you selling it?

Is the engine giving you problems?

If you can afford a tokunbo car why settle for a Nigerian used? In all honesty, I know that I would most likely buy a foreign used than a Nigerian used. After all, the Nigerian used was a foreign used import only that it’s now currently been used on a Nigerian road.  We can both agree that the main reason you may not want to use a Nigerian used is because of the unknown factors. Unknown factors like – the true condition of the car, that the original parts on the car may have been replaced with aftermarkets, just to mention a few.

Does this really mean that tokunbo cars are better than naija used cars? Definitely NOT.

What most buyers miss out on is that, all used cars may have a dark page in their history. Long as a buyer is buying a used car whether foreign or local used, you really cannot tell or be 100% sure about the history. Even a foreign car could have had a terrible history such as – careless owners who managed it poorly, an altered odometer, a previous crash repaired poorly.

It really depends on the current state of the car whether foreign used or Nigerian used. Always do your checks before a purchase ideally, with a good and sincere mechanic.

A quiet running engine is in top condition.

This is one of the common myths Nigerians still believe in about used cars. Let me quickly let this one out first, a car sound running roughly does not necessarily mean it’s got a bad engine or not. I would definitely not want to buy a car with a knocking engine sound. However, I am only talking about a running speed and sound coming from the exhaust of the car. Most cars run differently. Some makes run louder than others by default. I once owned a Peugeot 107 with a 1 litre engine. The engine running sound was so loud that it sounded like 2 litre engine. I took it to a mechanic garage and was reassured that this is normal for this Peugeot model. On the day I sold this car, the prospective buyer also confirmed what the garage told me. She had owned one previously and she had bought it from new. Whether diesel engine or petrol engine you should compare the engine running sound with cars’ of the same specs that is, make – model – fuel type & engine size.

How large a car is, determines its price.

The notion that big cars are more expensive is gradually changing in our society but it is still a common belief among some. Most would refer to fast cars as been more expensive because they are usually luxurious makes but even some standard sized family cars are more expensive than a large sized car. Prices are usually determined by the demand and supply which also directly and indirectly is influenced by perceived quality, durability, maintenance cost, the sell on value and so on. Most cars manufactured in Europe are small/medium sized whereas the Americans are lovers of larger cars (though this is gradually changing). All these factors reflect on car prices.

US imported cars are better than European counterparts.

Just as explained above, I hate to tell you this but the reason why there are more US imported cars in Nigeria is because they are cheaper than the European counterparts. We can’t even compare their quality if there are lesser European imports in Nigeria.

us price vs uk price
US price vs UK price for bmw 8 series

To verify this, I went to autotrader US and autotrader UK to compare the price of a new BMW 8 series. Average retail price in the US was N32.5Million and N36Million in the UK (after currency conversion using oando). Nigerian motor trade sector is fiercely competed for. Most buyers only buy according to specs and price whereas the key is general condition of the car. In the western world, prices are usually related to its previous history, how many previous keepers and if the car has a service history.

Tokunbo parts are better than new ones.

Replacing damaged car parts with used parts is common everywhere in the world not just in Nigeria. Depending on the garage where work is been carried out. Your tokunbo car may have had some of its parts replaced with either an aftermarket or OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) parts. The reason why most people don’t buy the manufacturer’s original part is usually because they are a lot more expensive than their counterparts.

Most OEM is as good as the manufacturer’s original parts but may be more expensive than the aftermarket ones. The quality of a used part you are buying is in the history of the car it came from.  Just like a used engine parts seller should tell you the mileage of the car the engine came from. That should reasonably tell you how much life may be left in the engine you are replacing yours with. This goes with every other used part you are buying. The condition and durability of the part may be from the car it came from and if it’s an original, OEM or aftermarket parts. Some aftermarkets are approved by the car manufacturers but it does not mean it’s definitely better than a used one and vice versa.

Ask questions or do your findings. Let an expert do the purchase for you if you are unsure about which one you should buy. However, an aftermarket or an OEM part may do a better job. The used part you are buying may likely be an aftermarket too.

Do you know that you can find parts sellers on our website? Visit our homepage to find one.

Please leave your comments below.