Buying a second hand car in hong Kong

Can anyone advise on whats involved in buying a second hand car in Hong Kong.
For example, where to go, what to lookout for, and what paper work is required.
Thanks in advance.

Second-hand cars -- be careful!

We Talls bought a second-hand car from a local dealer some years ago, and in retrospect I would not classify it as a happy experience.

We even had Mrs Tall’s car-buff brother to help us out, but there were several problems with the car we didn’t recognize when we made the buy.

First, the car was a Mitsubishi Gallant – a nice model, which we loved in terms of its general features, but which we found out later is a popular model for illegal road racing here in HK. We ended up thinking our car might have been involved in that, given some of the problems it eventually developed.

Second, we suspect that the previous owners used illegal gasoline as fuel. This also is not uncommon here. Our car had significant problems with the fuel injection system that the mechanics who worked on it attributed to impure gas.

Third, we found out that Mitsubishi replacement parts are really expensive.

In the end, we sold the car and didn’t replace it, since we moved and are now right by an MTR station, so we can make do nicely with public transport/taxis only.

If we had bought another second-hand car, though, we definitely – definitely!! – would have gone for a boring Toyota. They’ve got excellent reputations for dependability, and since they’re so common in HK, it’s easy to find cheap/used replacement parts for them.

Watch out for local second-hand dealers: they don’t do much to enhance the (world-wide) low reputations of car salesmen. If you do go the dealer route, it would be a big advantage in negotiations if you can bring along someone who knows a lot about cars and speaks Cantonese.

But you might be best off trying to pick up a car from a leaving expat family; generally they’re in a hurry to liquidate, so you can do pretty well for price. And if you can find someone who’s genuinely maintained a car, you’ve got it made!

Oh, and I believe if you buy a car second-hand, you have to have it tested for road-worthiness to get it licensed. You can find the details on the Transport Department’s website.

second hand cars

Thanks, thats great advice.
I was told by a local pretty much the same thing yesterday. To buy Toyota and to try to take a cantonese speaker with you. ( as is the case all over the world, the more they know about cars the better. )
We are looking at living in an appartment in Repulse Bay with a very regular shuttle bus service into central,and close to a park and shop, and so are now hoping that we can live without a car. So we'll see how we go. This will at least allow us to take our time in the hunt.

Thanks again.

Second-Hand...where to find?

You mentioned buying a second-hand car from departing expats. Great idea. Any idea where one would find listings?


Also, what sort of Toyota/s

Also, what sort of Toyota/s would you recommend?

Thanks again.

Car ads

I think the standard place to check is the 'Trading Post' classifieds section in the SCMP, which comes out on Sundays (or Saturdays? I am not one of the SCMP's regular readers!).

Also you might check the Park n Shop/Wellcome message boards in expat-heavy housing developments (if you live near any).

Readers, any other suggestions?

As for the type of Toyota, I'm not sure, either.

Mr Tall

Well, muchas gracias for

Well, muchas gracias for your response. Thanks...I'll check those out.

Several local expat websites

Several local expat websites also have classified listings.


try Hong Kong Trading Post

try Hong Kong Trading Post - they usually have a few listed

Cars for sale in Hong Kong

A good place to see cars for sale and compare prices etc is Car Sales Asia

2nd-hand cars is a great site, just click on the ENG tab before proceeding. you get a wide variety of cars, and some are real bargains. there are also a few trying to get much more than what their cars are worth, but should be easy to spot.
whoever you buy from, tell them you'll take the car to a mechanic for a check up: it'll cost you about hk$500, but they'll give it a fairly thorough going over -- they'll even check the compression ratio. and they'll give you a list of what may be wrong, as well as how much they'll charge you to fix it. you can then use that as leverage when you bargain.
hope this helps.

2nd-hand cars

Go for a environmentally friendly Toyota Corolla with standard transmission. Take it easy on the clutch and the brakes, follow its maintenance schedule (I do it myself), and it will last and last. After 65,000 km, mine is still on all original equipments - except the tires and filters for air and oil.
If you buy second hand cars, investigate their history including accident records. Front-wheel drive cars that have had front-end accidents are very expensive to repair and selfdom run well again after repairs.

Second hand cars in HK

You might also want to know that there are a large no. of luxury cars here in HK, the MB s500, Audi A6, 4-wheel drives etc. are actually used for Mainland-HK business trips. Hence, they are fed with Mainland low-quality gasoline, travelled on rough roads and being abused by the drivers to ensure timely arrival at destination. When problems developed, they will polish up the exterior and clean the interior and sell them as 'pre-loved' vehicles, only driven by billionnaire casually!

Trust me, I am one of the casualties and the annual maintenance bill can climb up to tens of thousands of dollars and non-stop.