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Tokunbo Vs. New Cars In Nigeria: Everything You Should Know

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Many Nigerians are often at crossroads when choosing either a Tokunbo or a new car. One of the main reasons is that Tokunbo cars have served so well for over three decades. With this, it has built great trust in the minds of Nigerians. 

But, aside from its popularity in Nigeria, others prefer new cars. There are many reasons people either go for Tokunbo or New cars. In most cases, these reasons don’t provide all the needed facts for new buyers. 

This lack of objective information about Tokunbo and New Cars affects the purchasing decisions of car buyers. To clear the air, we have drafted out everything you should look into before choosing any of them. 

Things To Know About Tokunbo And New Cars 

The term Tokunbo is a Yoruba word that means “from overseas.” It’s a name that is primarily used for babies born overseas. This name has also come to apply to averagely used cars shipped from America, Europe, Asia, and shipped into Nigeria. 

New cars, on the other hand, are fresh and unused cars either made or shipped into the country. In this article, we look at some of the primary things to consider when making decisions between Tokunbo and New cars. 

  1. Reliability 

Before purchasing a Tokunbo or new car, the first thing you should consider is how reliable the vehicle is. Many Nigerians go for Tokunbo cars for obvious reasons. But, this reason is not worth neglecting whether it’s a car that’ll serve you. 

Based on the personal experiences of Tokunbo car owners, some of these cars are believed to be stronger and last longer than some new model cars. On the other hand, some new cars are more reliable than Tokunbo cars. 

Therefore, when checking for reliability in Tokunbo or new cars, your focus should be on the car’s model. Some models are stronger than others. So, a new car from a strong model is better than Tokunbo in reliability. 

  1. Cost 

Cost is a huge determining factor when it comes to buying a car. Especially in Nigeria, with the depleting economic situation, the cost is a fact for many consumers before buying a car. 

When you look at the cost between Tokunbo and new cars, the reality is that Tokunbo cars are cheaper compared to new cars. It does not mean all Tokunbo is cheap. But, they’re more affordable than a new car. 

Also, what determines the affordability of cars is the model. You cannot compare the price of a new 2021 Toyota Camry with a Tokunbo Lamborghini. 

Generally, in affordability, Tokunbo cars are more accessible than new cars. 

  1. Cost Of Maintenance 

The cost of purchasing a car differs from the cost of maintenance. Before choosing between Tokunbo and new cars, this is another thing users consider. 

The popular opinion is that when it comes to maintenance, Tokunbo cars are easier to maintain because their spare parts are available in the market. 

But, for most new cars, getting their spare parts in the Nigerian market is difficult. Most times, it requires importing them from overseas. 

Aside from spare parts, fuel and oil consumption is another thing to look into. Between new and Tokunbo cars, some Tokunbo cars consume much more fuel and oil than new cars. So, before purchasing, check out the availability of spare parts and the oil and fuel consumption level. 

  1. Comfort 

Comfort is relative when you consider new and Tokunbo cars. Most people with a preference for Tokunbo cars, they’ll tell you that Tokunbo cars are more comfortable. Those who prefer new cars swear it’s more comfortable. 

But, comfort does not apply to whether it’s new or used. What determines comfort is the quality of the car, and many Tokunbo cars are of good quality. 

  1. Security 

Security between Tokunbo and new cars differs depending on the car model. Tokunbo versions of new model cars have as much security as their new versions. 

But, you cannot compare the security level of a 2006 Tokunbo Toyota Camry with today’s model car. The reason is simple: the car’s security system has been improved. 


On the internet, you’ll find a lot of speculation surrounding Tokunbo and new cars. Most of them are biased and discouraging. When choosing a car, these are things to consider. Once a car fits these descriptions, whether Tokunbo or new, you should consider buying it. 

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