Cars [and financing]

Has anyone bought a financed car?

What sort of down payment do they look for etc etc?


and I have a co-signer

By co-signer, I assume you mean your more-sensible Taiwanese half? We bought a new 1.6 litre Sentra about four years ago from a place not too far from you. Its been a dream to own in terms of reliability, servicing fees, good stereo, etc., except its grossly underpowered. Still fine for anything you’d want to do with it in Taiwan.

However, we paid NT$600,000 cash for it, but I do know that there were finance terms available. I’ll ask the wife tonight and see if she still has any of the bumf (she’s something of a packrat).

Ta mate:

added to the sensible better-helf, i now have a sensible job and a sensible apartment. Settling down to domesticity and the grind.

need a car to get from one to other without expending all my energy doing so.

The commercial for the Toyota Corolla Altis has a blurb at the end of it saying you can pay in installments with 0% interest. Don’t know if they want any money down or not. Seems like the market is a little depressed. I know Yamaha also has a similar deal for the new Majesty 250cc scooter - no money down, no interest. Only a sticker price of $198,000! :shock:

AFAIK, the only bank to offer financing to ARC-holding laowai is Citibank. It wasn’t too hard to get the loan.
My last buy (an Impreza, after much haggling) was 670k, I put down 100k cash. Rest is interest-free on 2 years, low rate on third year.

An upside of this was it was easy to get a Citibank credit card once I’d cleared the checks for the loan.

What’s AFAIK?

AFAIK: As far as I know

Who’s the English mothertongue here? :wink:


Ask your local VW if they offer the same 10 year warrenty as the do in the USA and he will think you are joking… which you are of course because a car warrenty in Taiwan definately sucks (2 to 3 years if you are lucky). Go with a good Japanese car 2 to 3 years old and you will save 100’s of thousands of $'s. Car maintanence here is so cheap you cant go wrong second hand. Believe me, it doesn’t hurt as much when some local rice farmer bangs your $150K ride versus a new $600K just off the showroom beauty.

BMW seems to be offering a very reasonable lease term for three years, after which you have the option to purchase the car for about 800K. This may seem like alot of money but these cars with regular maintenance will run for at least twice as long as anything assembled in Taiwan. I’ll ask my wife for the details if you’re interested.

A few years ago I bought a Toyota Tercel with about 50% down. We did the financing through CitiBank with no hitches whatsoever, although we did have a account with them worth more than the loan amount at the time. The loan officer even came out to our house to do all the paperwork. Neither my wife nor I were Taiwanese citizens.

The only problem came when we paid off the loan–it took quite a while to get the final paperwork, which was a pain because we ended up leaving the country and selling the car right about that time.

Good luck! And don’t forget to haggle :stuck_out_tongue:

ouch Iris,

thanks and excuse my obvious ignorance.

and thanks all for the replies.

100 up for alleycat here at the gabba, and before lunch too.

Just one more contributor here:

I bought a new Tercel 2 months ago. List price is around 450K NT but the sales dropped it to 440K. Paid a down payment of 70,000 NT and having the rest AND insurance at 0% for 2 years. I calculated the total price of the car came to almost 500K (with insurance)…not sure if I got suckered or not cuz’ its the first time I bought a car in Taiwan…and considering I paid almost US$15K for a car thats been out of production since 1996 in the US…its like buying a Beetle (the 1st generation) but without the hippness…

It does come with hands free mobile phone thingy…and a display that can change into 6 different colors…trying to comfort myself here…ha!ha!

Bored at work…
I am a car fanatic so going to babble some more (with no one to stop me! :sunglasses: )

Before I bought the Tercel, I was considering the Virage iO…the semi-auto 6 speed was really attractive since the cheapest car with that kind of transmission in the US is an Acura 3.2CL Type S (US$30K). But being the first time to make such a big purchase…I wasn’t ready to spend 4 years paying it off.

here is what I found out:
dirt cheap: scooter, Formosa Matiz
cheap with more room: Toyota Tercel (coming out with new model next year), Nissan March (ditto, I think)
Cool: Toyota Altis S, Mitsubishi Virage iO, Ford Mondeo RS
Cheapest import: Smart, Fiat (forgot model name), Peugeot 206 (base model), Opel Corsa

Tell us what car you are considering :smiley: !

Nissan Sentra is my favorite. Maintenance is cheap and they are no-nonse cars. Not so sexy though.

I go for older cars, as dents and scratches just happen here. Getting a loan through a 2hand car dealer is no problem. If you know them, they will help you to get the documentation together as well.

I’m with you on the no-nonce car thing. :smiley:

Damn right! Wouldn’t be caught dead in a nonce’s car.

No-nonsense for chrissakes.

As amatter of fact I drive a NT$25k banged-up wreck! Happy?

I was also considering a 2nd hand car…but after the flood last year…I was wondering where has all the flooded cars gone to? I just got here this March…so I only heard about the flood.

Knowing how Taiwanese are such misers…most likely they repaired them or cleaned it out and sold them to second hand car dealers. I am positive some of the dealers doesn’t even know the cars has been in a flood…they just sell cars. No matter how much repairs are done, cars thats been in a flood just can’t be repaired.

I am sure quality are pretty much all the same here, doesn’t matter if they are a Toyota, Nissan or Mitsubishi. They are all made here. So I am sure a Lancer will last just as long as a Sentra…which hopefully last long and not short. Even the Subaru Impreza is assembled here…

So its all for the image I guess…Mitsu’s are sporty because of all the Jacky Chan movies…Sentras…well…at least better then my Tercel…he!he! :smiley:

I bought the Formosa Matiz - for the wife uhh huh.
At first the finance company was keen to do the deal, then they wanted a guarantor because my wife doesn’t work. Then we said get stuffed we’ll pay cash. Then they said, “oh that’s ok, I guess it’s not impossible after all.” We then said “get stuffed, and sod off” and borrowed the money from my mother in laws neighbour and paid cash at the dealers. This made for a very unhappy finance company, they begged us to reconsider and we said " hey, you shouldn’t have changed the rules at the last minute - Get lost".

End of story. Now my wife (sometimes me) drives an apple green Matiz, sure it’s small like a scooter, but it’s great around town and can still keep up on the freeway.

If you want to avoid to get a flooded car, then all you have to do is to deal with people you trust. Work thru your network, then you should be OK. I bought my first car off the street and it was a great deal for the money paid for it. The second one was from a used car dealer. If you know those guys, they will recommend cars to you and tell you not to think about most of their inventory. Made a funny scene when I walked around his lot checking out his cars. I asked with interest to this or that car. He told me that the car in question was a pile of sh*t. Thank God he found one car to recommend.

Most trained mechanics are able to see if a car has been flooded at one point in the past. It rusts in funny inaccesible places, there might be bits of dirt here or there and the electric system might be a bit funny. Perhaps buying your ride in Taichung might be a good idea.