By Derrick Eng, CEO of myTukar
As the Covid-19 pandemic hit Malaysia, back in 2020, the country saw a rise in the number of cases, totalling to about 47,000 infected individuals by the end of 2020, and to about 300,000 cases by beginning 2021. Movement Control Orders, restrictions and social distancing have redefined the way we move around. Due to a combination of government lockdowns and the fear of contracting the virus in public, there has been a significant reduction in people taking public transport. As a result, people are now finding new means of transport to get from one place to another.
New cars being too expensive, and bicycles inconvenient for long distances, interests have now switched to second-hand cars. However, are pre-loved cars more sustainable than new vehicles? The answer is often yes. Furthermore, with the country entering the endemic phase, the used car industry has been thriving, for a number of reasons.
The Depreciating Value and Environmental Impact
Firstly, used cars are more enticing in terms of cost. Cars depreciate quickly, which means that after only five years, they can cost as low as half their original price. In buying a reliable used car, you would only be paying about 60 – 80% the cost of a brand new vehicle, and receive a highly reliable vehicle that is covered by factory warranty. If maintained properly over the years, their features retain high usability, hence giving drivers a perfectly functional car for much cheaper than what one would have paid for a new car.
Secondly, there is the shortage of microchips for new cars. It is a major crisis globally involving tiny components. When the world shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it brought about the closure of numerous factories, as automakers were too slow to order more chips or semiconductors and lost out to electronic manufacturers. Consequently, supply shifted to meet the rising demand for consumer electronics, and the backlog began to grow. When the automotive industry began to slowly reopen, a stronger-than-expected demand for new vehicles outpaced production, and has yet to catch up. As new vehicles require a plethora of microchips to control a majority of functions, consumers looking for new cars will now have to consider other options.
There are also the environmental side-effects of new cars. The damage caused to the environment due to production and exploitation of natural resources has been a concern for many years, and is even more so now that global warming is increasingly threatening. Even hybrid cars, which are indeed more sustainable than normal cars, are extremely hazardous during production. A typical passenger vehicle emits 4,600 kg of CO2 per year, while the production of a new electric car emits about 14,746 kg of CO2. As an industry expert, we strongly believe that a major way to reduce harmful emissions is by extending the life cycle of old cars. In doing so, we not only make used cars sustainable, but we also reduce factory emissions.
When buying a used car, you are buying it with the emissions already produced. As it is less taxing on the environment, it is regarded as an eco-friendly alternative. It is akin to receiving a huge emissions discount. Buying well-maintained used cars means that one does not have to keep supporting such harmful production. It also means that the demand for new cars will potentially, thereby reducing the production damage without impacting major transport plans.
The Purchasing Journey
Moreover, when purchasing a brand-new vehicle, there would usually be hundreds of dollars’ worth of hidden fees involved in the purchase. Used cars, however, have no shipping or hidden costs that you may encounter while buying a new car. You can still read the fine print and find out what additional fees, if any, are being added to your total car cost even when buying a used car. For example, in buying a used car from a platform like myTukar, one need not worry about hidden costs as the platform’s buying car process is quick, transparent and fair.
When it comes down to warranty, buying a used car is always a gamble, as most used old cars are uncovered by the manufacturer’s warranty. Our goal is to make buying used cars more affordable, that is why myTukar offers a 5-day money back guarantee and an extended 1-year warranty. With extended warranty used cars can extend their life cycle even further.
Finally, the vehicle purchasing journey should be a seamless and easy experience. It is vital that customers understand that they are paying the right price and have reviewed every aspect of the vehicle. As we believe this to be an important step in the journey, that is why we strive to ensure every aspect of the car ownership process is taken care of, from obtaining the Road Transport Department’s approval right down to choosing the right car insurance and banking option. Customers need not conduct extensive research to find out if they are paying the right price or if it’s a good quality car, as myTukar takes care of all those aspects. Moreover, customers would not need to waste any money on purchasing badly depreciating cars.
Furthermore, test driving cars can be a chore but it is an important part of the buying process, as this would reveal hidden details about the vehicle that might not be noticeable initially. This is where platforms like myTukar can come in handy to provide buyers with an added layer of security. In myTukar’s case, buyers are guaranteed a five-day testing period, during which any purchased vehicle can be returned for a full refund should there be any dissatisfaction.
Other factors to take into consideration would be the quality and maintenance of the car, as well as the mileage. Globally, the best second-hand car models are Toyota Corolla, Honda Fit and Mercedes Benz E-Class. However, in Malaysia, the most popular second-hand cars remain Perodua Myvi, Honda Civic FC and Toyota Vios. However, with myTukar in the picture, buyers need not worry. As myTukar’s vehicles have gone through an extensive 360-inspection check, buyers would be able to have an overall and thorough insight into the car’s condition.