Really. They are! Ok, I know dealerships are not the most exciting places to walk into for the average Zimbo. A car sales garage is a lot more palatable and a lot less serious. However, I was brave enough to walk into one last week. Mostly because I saw a snazzy looking Toyota I had not seen before.
The dealership in question is Faramatsi Motors located corner 3rd street and George Silundika avenue overlooking the architectural marvel on one end that is the Old Mutual building and the lush summer greenery that is the Africa Unity Square park on the other end.
I need a car
Personally I am getting worn out from the pedestrian way of life. I mean in 2021 I walked damn near 2500km. So yes. It’s high time I got a metal box on 4 wheels for myself, which means I have been shopping around. A lot. Everywhere. I have been on Be forward, Facebook marketplace and even these approachable car sales dotted around the CBD.
The sort of car I am looking for. And let me preface this by saying I am no mbinga…but if you watch a lot more of my YouTube videos I might be. I am in the market for a car with a raised body and 3 rows of seats. No not a Wish. An SUV. If you are nosy and you wanna know why, it’s because I have a lot of cousins, I have filming gear I need to move around with and I don’t want to have to think about my bumpers hitting the curb whenever I park. So it’s a facelift Volvo XC90. The 2.5T petrol. The one I have on my shortlist is going for US$7500. I have been saving for it for years because I am no mbinga.
Brand new local vs 2nd hand import
Back to the matter at hand. The snazzy little Toyota I saw in the dealership is called a Toyota Urban Cruiser. It’s a hatchback the size of a VW polo and brand new boxed it’s going for US$31 000. Definitely a long way out of my budget but it’s not a scary figure at all.
And if you go on let’s say Be forward, a second hand one will set you back US$14 000 excluding duty and if I am to trust this duty calculator I found on the internet, this same car that is maybe 9 years older with 58 000 miles on the clock (85 300km) will set you back US$25 000.
There is just US$6 000 between a 9 year old, used car in Japan waiting to be imported vs a brand new recent one parked in a show room in Harare right now.
The hits just don’t end there. With a brand new car from a dealership, you are not just buying a brand spanking new car. You are buying a car with a warranty. This means if there is a factory defect on the car, it is A LOT easier to get the problem fixed because the dealership has a direct link with the factory that made the car. And getting it fixed will be free. Only if it’s a factory defect, I had to repeat that.
You can also have the luxury of picking the colour you want. And if they don’t have it in their show room, they can literally import it for you at the exact same price as the one they have in stock. No extra charges.
There is no wait time when it comes to getting the car. You pay the money and you can drive it off the dealership floor. It’s as simple as that. And Faramatsi Motors can allow you to go home with the car after paying a 60% deposit then you can negotiate payment plans for the remaining 40% whilst you are running-in your new car.
Running-in a car is basically driving it below a certain speed for a set distance so that all the moving parts fit into each other smoothly and tightly. Only applies to brand new cars.
The biggest perk that is technical but also the most important is compatibility with the region. The basic working principle of a car is that the engine mixes air with fuel and lights that mixture up to make power. The ratio of how much air and how much fuel is mixed is called a tune and this tune is different for the same car in different parts of the world. Why is it different? Well because the density of air changes with height above sea level.
So since Japan is closer to the sea than Zimbabwe, a car tuned for Japan will be slower and will consume more fuel in Zimbabwe it is pretty much suffocating. Zimbabwe is further away from the sea than Japan and so the air here in Zim is less dense than the air in Japan.
Now cars from a dealership are only sold in a region where those specific cars are tuned to the environment they will be sold in so that they perform in the way they were intended. They won’t be suffocating. Neither will they overheat too from the semi arid conditions in these parts of the world.
It was fun walking through a dealership but I cannot afford a single car being sold in there. However, if I could, a dealership really would be the way to go. It’s just better peace of mind knowing you own something that is being driven for the 1st time, it’s got a warranty backed up my the company that made the car and that it is tuned to the conditions of the environment it is being sold in for the best possible performance and efficiency.
And being very honest, just taking a look at Faramatsi Motors, the pricing is very fair. It’s pretty much within the global average for buying that car which I find impressive considering just how pricey things generally are in our teapot shaped country.
If you are in the market for a new car and you have access to a healthy chunk of change. Take a trip to some dealerships just to know what else is out there. As for me and my peasant budget. I’ll have to settle for that 3rd hand Volvo XC90. I’m going with humble beginnings.
18 thoughts on “Brand new cars are Actually reasonable!”
There’s a huge difference though between “reasonable” and “affordable”…
True. The initial title had ‘Affordable’ in it but after assessing my bank balance ‘Reasonable’ was the more fitting word lol
It is actually sad that working people in Zimbabwe can hardly afford a new car. If you’ve worked in RSA the process is very smooth and enjoyable, provided of course that you have all the required paper-work around citizenship and work permits and your international driver’s license. Car dealer salesmen start phoning you as soon as you receive your first payslip, they obviously get lists of new employees from HR depts etc. They bring the car to you for a test drive etc, ask you the extras you require including colour etc. Generally no deposit is required and you pay through your bank and tracking is mandatory for comprehensive insurance coverage. No need to be a mbinga – simply a country with business focus from manufacturing, financing etc that respects those who fund the government of the day with their tax.
Facts. If the systems locally allowed, majority of the middle class should have been able to buy a brand new car with financing.
I saw ‘Urban Cruiser’ and for some reason my mind immediately expected to see Son of FJ Cruiser 😂 Toyota should get on it! But yeah, that is a reasonable deal given our circumstances. If only we weren’t in such a mess, we wouldn’t be so impressed over something so normal!
The same applies when it comes to phones for me. I told myself I will never buy a 2nd hand phone (no offence please). The idea of having a new thing gives me a piece of mind.
It is a pity seeing an old man whining about a car😁😁😁 It just goes to show that as a nation we have failed ,16yrs when you are eligible for your driver’s licence that is when you are supposed to be whining about a car 😁 especially a 2nd hand car kkkkk pathetic mentality ,we should teach the future generations the right philosophy so that they won’t be stuck in the same pitiful shoes that you find yourself in ( don’t mean to be rude just calling a spade a spade)
Vanhu vemaZUPCO vachatinetsa pano… @20 maingofamba netsoka wani, mavakuti 16 this and that. 🤣
Just appreciate an article for once. If you’re to be honest, when did you get your first car? Do u even have one?
It’s a good article, regardless of where we find our teapot situation at.
Sounds like a paid article. It’s okay to mention
“I mean in 2021 I walked damn near 2500km”
You walked from Harare to Johannesburg and back…and then some, and I bet you are as fit as a fiddle right now (all your organs probably flexing and thanking you). Hope getting a car won’t reverse all those hard earned gains: it’s pretty easy to convince yourself you can fit in time for a walk or a jog into your new schedule. Really, really not that easy. Good luck to you sir!
Volvo XC90 though, am curious about your choice. Is it a brand affection thing or entirely a practical choice? Affordable and reliable SUVs and crossovers in our price range are definitely limited but isn’t the Volvo an iffy choice owing to high fuel consumption and costly repairs? Am not a car guru by any stretch so please enlighten me if I’m mistaken.
I guess it can work if he found a good example of one and if he’s willing to take on the extra overhead in exchange for its capabilities vs the new toyota (4wd?, Cargo, Safety, Old but useful tech, Good trim etc). After all, it sounds like if he picks it, its going to double as a production vehicle which means it will in theory earn back at least part of its upkeep. There is always an inherent risk going second hand but from their podcast, it sounds like he gets it.
We are farmers and do not have payslips or bank accounts but we have potential of buying these new cars but we are spared aside because of or job titles please do something for us to enjoy like everyone else
I don’t see that changing soon unless a Bank or Dealership structures a product to capture that specific market. Maybe one of them already has but isn’t marketing it, who knows! For now, the only ways forward I see is if you enter the formal market through banking your money as an individual or registered corporate entity, building up your collateral through other property these types like or just straight up saving the cash (in your safe or under your pillow) until you can purchase the vehicle outright.
Is that the snazzy looking Toyota you had not seen before?? (In the pic)
Is it the one you’re referring to as an ‘urban cruiser’?? That one looks like the rush not the urban cruiser
$31 000?? Is that the top spec model. If not it’s very expensive