Thailand is fast becoming a manufacturing hub with Toyota, Honda, Mitsubishi and Isuzu being part of 14 manufacturers using the destination to make pickups and smaller cars.
In 2012 Thailand Manufactured 2.45m vehicles making it the 7th largest exporter globally. In 1995 they barely exported 9,000 vehicles, and in 2012 it exceeded 1 million. This was made way for by de-regulating the industry, offering generous incentives to produce eco-friendly cars and cutting the corporate tax rate from 30% to 20%. This was all a strategic move by the Thai government to get to where the manufacturing industry is today – the largest car manufacturer in South East Asia.
Another allure is the cheap labour with it being one fifth of getting it done in Japan. This allows the production lines in Thailand to be labour intensive rather than be dominated by robotics.
So are there any problems with Thai made vehicles? Initially when the exporting started to ramp up there seem to be quality and finish issues with aspects like paint. But now the bugs are all ironed out and the difference between Japanese and Thai vehicle build is un-noticeable so much so that fussy Japanese buyers are satisfied. It has also passed the test with Aussie buyers and now about to be tested again by the US market.
Having driven different Thai made vehicles in my years of the industry I can confidently say that I never noticed any imperfections or inferiority in the product.
If I can get into a better optioned vehicle at a cheaper price I’m all for the Thai insurgence of the auto manufacturing industry.
Best Car Deals Are Only During EOFY
Many buyers hold out on purchasing a vehicle until June when they believe dealers will do their best deals.
Truth is, yes it will seem like discounts are larger and more brands are on sale, but the actual fact is the only reason it seems that way is dealers and manufacturers decide to spend more in that month advertising offers. Sales and offers are available all year round and every manufacturer will have something they are pushing.
So no longer do you have to wait until June to purchase a vehicle based on getting a deal. Waiting for a specific period may mean you are restricted on colours and/or spec. Dealers want to get rid of stock before EOFY and so will be less willing to bring in a car that adds to their inventory list rather than decreasing it.
If you do your research you will see that the deals can be done all year round.
I Can Get a Better Price at the Dealership
The internet is the number one source of researching what car to buy. Due to this people believe that if they see a price on the internet they are able to get a better price if they negotiate face to face with the dealer. Unfortunately this is not always the case. Dealers use the internet not only to advertise cars or the dealership but also to get rid of excess stock or specs that may not be as popular, so the price they put on the car online, print or anywhere else is the final price to clear. They will even sometimes be at a loss or no profit because it is costing the dealer more money to keep it there another month rather than get rid of it.
This does not mean you should not try and negotiate a better deal but sometimes when the dealer says ‘I cannot move another cent on it’ they actually mean it.
Dealer Finance is Always More Expensive
People assume going thru there bank or external lender gives you an ability to get a lower interest rate. Dealerships use the same lenders as you and I to offer finance to their clients. They also have multiple finance companies they can use or play off each other. For instance the car I bought most recently was bought and financed thru a dealer and the financier is St George Bank, with whom I have an account with.
So there is no reason that you cannot get the same finance rates as you would going direct to the bank. The difference is that dealerships will initially not offer their lowest rate due to the commissions they make from higher rates. But if you negotiate on your finance rate as you would the price of the car you can usually get in on par with rates outside a dealership.
Additionally with manufactures getting in on the act and promoting finance deals like 2.9% and even 0% as Toyota has on their Camry currently, you will be getting a much better finance deal thru dealers than you would any other lending institution.
You Get a Better Price if you Pay Cash
A large part of the dealer’s income comes from the back end profit such as finance. So in actual fact if you say you are financing thru the dealership you are more likely to get a discount on the price of the vehicle. If a dealer hears ‘cash’ they will try and make the most amount of profit out of the front end, being the price of the car knowing they will not have an opportunity at the back end.
Your negotiating position is far improved if you are buying and financing the car from the same dealership.
What it means is if you are in the market to buy a car you better speed up the process. With no exchange recovery foreseen by the end of the year and possibly well into next year it threatens to increase prices across most models.
This is a change from when we were seeing record highs in the Oz dollar and the bargains in imported vehicles saw a sales boom.
The reason the Australian dollar affects the price of what we can buy imported cars for is we buy imported cars with foreign currencies, and most of the cars into Australia came from Europe, Thailand and South Korea.
If our dollar is buying less, than the products are going to cost more hence the expense is past down to us. This does not apply to all imported models, the Japanese Yen gets weakened by the government and that is why Japanese car prices have remained stable.
Toyota Car manufactures have said they are going to absorb the recent falls in the dollar over the coming months but this will not be sustainable. So to make a decision by the end of the year on an imported vehicle could be better on the hip pocket……or you could buy Australian made!
The dollar has created some great deals on the Toyota Rukus so take one for a test drive
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