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Posted by Felix Okoli on Tuesday September 17, 2013 8:5:55:

Buying a car is something people don't actually do everyday because it is an expensive investment. Nigerians would however not mind spending a huge among if their savings to buy a car that lasts.

When it comes to buying cars in Nigeria, brand new cars are not among the most sought after in the market due to their high price and most Nigerians who are mostly middle class tend to spend their money on buying fairly used or second hand cars. It is not really because they don't like new cars but because such new cars don't sell for at least N1m($6000) in the local market. Even the used cars are quite expensive in the market even though they are not new and prices for popular saloon cars tend to start from 800k and above. However, there are also new cars in the market but prices are way too high and even new cars can cost as much as N5m($30k) and above.

I've read earlier about the cheapest new cars being made in India called the Tata Nano but these are not actually available yet in the market and in fact, the most affordable small new cars or rather Tricycles in the market are sold at around N400k. The Tata model that is in Nigeria is the Tata Indigo and tis sells for about N1.47m. However, I'm not sure the Tata Nano or Indigo would be popular in Nigeria since people prefer car brands that can last and are durable on the rough roads. Brands like Toyota, Mercedez and Honda seem to rule the market for now.

When it comes to buying cars, 4 wheel cars are what the market mostly buys and it can be hard finding a brand new car that is really affordable to the middle class.

How cheap can a new car sell in Nigeria? How low should the price go for new cars such that Nigerians would be more than willing to buy them?

Based on what I've seen in the auto market, most new cars in Nigeria don't sell for less than N1m. In fact, one would need to have a budget of at least N2.5m if one intends buying a new car. I've also seen cars made by Kia sell under N2m but some people may prefer spending that money n a used Toyota Camry than on a Kia due to their durability.

The cheapest new cars I've seen really for now are the Kia Picanto(N1.1m) and the Tata Indigo(N1.5m) but it also faces competition from used Toyota and Honda cars which at time sell for less. Another reason why car brands like Kia and Tata face stiff competition is due to the low availability of spare parts and also skilled maintenance engineers. Brands like Toyota, Honda and Mercedez have more skilled engineers in the market and car parts for those brands are also in abundance.

Nigerians would still be hoping to buy cheap new cars in the future which sell for at least N1m($6000), have affordable and skilled maintenance experts as well as easy access to spare parts.


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