Tips for buying a secondhand car in the UAE

Buying a car in the UAE is VERY simple; Look for a model and type that suits you. Settle for the car colors that match your personality and of course follow THE tips.

What? Don’t tell me that you don’t know THE tips? Oh dear, well you might want to get yourself a nice cup of tea or coffee and read THE tips carefully:

Test drive the car


Take your potential car out for a short test drive. This is the easiest & quickest test to gauge how the car performs. Here’s what you should look out for:

  • Odd noises when driving, especially when over speed bumps, making turns etc..
  • Long engine crank, poor acceleration, or jittery performance
  • Unresponsive or noisy brakes

Regional car specifications

Is the car compatible with GCC specs? It’s really important to know where your car comes from and whether or not it was manufactured for the GCC region. This could have an effect on many things, from the car’s performance, such as the air conditioning quality and engine cooling efficiency, all the way to finding specific spare parts and most importantly, to how easy it will be to get the car insured.

For a quick indication – look for Arabic writing on the wing mirrors and the protector plate on the inside of the door to verify if it’s GCC Spec.

Ask the right questions!

Don’t shy away from asking the right questions & dig deep into the history of your potential new car. Ask the seller for the VIN number which will help you get a Car Report which will help you get the history of the car (Here’s a sample of what a Car Report looks like). Here are other things you should ask the dealership/seller about:

  • Accident history
  • Previous service history
  • Warranty status

Check for odometer tampering

Signs of odometer tampering can be quite obvious if you know what you’re looking for. Does the mileage seem suspiciously low for the car’s age and/or the condition? Keep an eye out for a worn out steering wheel, gear stick, and/or pedals in comparison to the mileage provided by the seller.

Now that you know THE tips, you are ready to find your dream car. So buckle up and enjoy the adventure!

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