Sensible car to have in Nairobi

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Sensible car to have in Nairobi

Post  thejoker on Tue Sep 22, 2009 8:55 am

I'm in the market for a car in Nairobi and was wondering what would be a sensible choice. A Four Wheel Drive is great to drive out of the city but would it be a target for carjackers versus a sedan/saloon? My priority is safety and inputs on a suitable car are welcome.

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Re: Sensible car to have in Nairobi

Post  TexanMzungu on Thu Sep 24, 2009 5:39 pm

Man, that was a big dilemma while we were there. We really wanted a four wheel drive as we lived in Karen and wanted it mostly for defensive-purposes only. Rules of the road; the bigger you are the more respect you demand! However, we did not want to spend the money for one.

We ended up getting a Mitsubishi saloon (sedan). It blends in enough but not so popular that it appears to be a target. After we bought it, we started to see the newer Nissan Wagons, which we really would have liked and bought instead.

Mostly, depends on your budget too. Cars are so personal, its hard to tell. Also, how many people average transporting, where you drive mostly, and if you drive much at night. All of these points could directly point to a 4x4...so long as you avoid a Prado it might help avoid the carjacking...?

Definitely go to the Car Bazaar off Ngong Road...if for nothing else than for the entertainment value!

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Buying a car in Kenya

Post  Admin on Fri Sep 25, 2009 10:10 am

Funnily enough, saloon cars such as Toyota Corolla's are even more at risk of car jackers as I understand it. There are so many in Nairobi that it is not a problem for car jackers to move them on. We know a taxi driver who was car jacked and many other 'ordinary' Kenyans in similar saloon cars who have had lots of security problems on the road. Some sort of 4x4 might be a good idea if the promised big El Nino rains do start to fall next month. It could be a case of driving through flooded roads, even in Nairobi city centre.

The problem with buying a car here is definitely cost. The Kenyan import duty puts another 45% or more on the perceived value of the car - so buying is horribly expensive. Do not go for a 'duty free' car (as seen advertised on shopping centre notice boards) as, unless you work for the UN or an embassy and are entitled to this, then you will get into all sorts of knots and paying loads more on top of the purchase price.

Finding cars on these notice boards (ie Junction, Sarit Centre, Westgate Centre, Village Market, Yaya centre) is not a bad idea though. We have done that before, then perhaps get a trusted mechanic to go along with you if you are seriously interested. There are also cars advertised in the free mag x-pat link - though most of them are from dealers - pick a copy up at Dormans or the Silverbird cinema.

Importing a car is not a bad idea, if you can do it within a certain number of months (3?) of your arrival, it can count as your entitlement and won't be so heavily taxed. I am a bit hazy on the details of this, but worth looking into, perhaps via your shipping agent?!

Hope this helps

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Re: Sensible car to have in Nairobi

Post  morikins on Fri Sep 25, 2009 11:40 pm

I've also heard of other ways of avoiding carjackings, like buying a car that's a strange color or modifying the appearance somehow so it stands out. Is this an urban legend, or does that actually work? Also, are certain drivers more likely to be carjacked (i.e. woman vs. man or Kenyan vs. non-Kenyan)?

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Re: Sensible car to have in Nairobi

Post  thejoker on Sun Sep 27, 2009 2:19 pm

Thanks all for the inputs. I will be making a purchase in another month or so and will share my experiences Smile

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Re: Sensible car to have in Nairobi

Post  thejoker on Sat Jan 02, 2010 9:25 am

I got myself a Nissan X-trail since it has a good blend of city and off-road capabilities. It's a lease and so far everything's been good. If anyone's interested in leasing a car, I can pass on the details of the gentleman. Thanks for your advice!

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Re: Sensible car to have in Nairobi

Post  Hagz on Tue Jul 06, 2010 8:55 pm

Probably a bit late now but we recently bought a car through Sean Garstin - really helpful and a good price.
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Re: sensible car to ahve in Nairobi

Post  kit kat on Thu Oct 14, 2010 3:18 pm

I liked this by Morikins:

"I've also heard of other ways of avoiding carjackings, like buying a car that's a strange color or modifying the appearance somehow so it stands out. Is this an urban legend, or does that actually work? Also, are certain drivers more likely to be carjacked (i.e. woman vs. man or Kenyan vs. non-Kenyan)?"

and would also like to know the answer. Anyone?!

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Re: Sensible car to have in Nairobi

Post  thejoker on Fri Oct 15, 2010 9:11 am

Hi Kitkat,

There's no fool proof strategy to secure yourself (and your car). We do what we have to do to keep safe :-) If you have an odd model or a strange looking car, chances are you won't be a target (at least not for your car). This doesn't mean you will be safe if you stumble upon a bunch of thugs. Prepare for the worst and hope for the best!

Cheers!

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sensible car in Nairobi

Post  Nash on Sun Oct 07, 2012 11:24 pm

Hope you are fine, Please I have a nice announcement to those who are planning to relocate or visit Nairobi for Holiday. Just I completed 2 Months vacation in Nairobi with my family and left the country Two weeks ago. When I arrived in Nairobi it was such a nightmare hiring cubs, for each move from one place to another and especially with family ha! I can't dare any more. I decided to buy a family car; lucky enough we got a nice kool ride Toyota Caldina, New shape and life has never been the same again mmwah! so awesome. We could drive within and from Nairobi to upcountry at own Leisure and that's the feeling of real Holiday in Kenya, Taifa with lovely kool breeze.

If you are planning to take a nice Holiday to Taifa and u'ld like to have ur own sweet ride please let me know, I have parked my sweet car in my compound and no one is driving it i.e seriously not in use, just a matter of cleaning and maintenance done by my sister. Please drop me a message if you want to have an awesome Holiday, i'll give this car to you at a wonderful reasonable price. You deserve peace of mind and a Holiday full of Joy with all great movements freely. Have a Lovely Holiday...it's worth.

Regards
Nash

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