How To Import Your Car to Kenya

For most Kenyans, car importation is a tantalizing idea. You get to shop for a car out there in the rest of the world. Get the perfect car and get it shipped to Kenya. However after this there comes the murky area of what happens next, will it pass the port or get rejected? How do I ship it? Is the person I am buying from trustworthy? Will the car be in good condition when I get it here or am I buying a lemon? How much tax will I pay?

I have decided to share with you the intricacies of importing your dream car to help most of you understand the methodology behind it.

Car importation is pretty straightforward, the trick is getting the right car. Sourcing starts with vehicle identification. You have to go through a host of sites and sometimes even visiting a few showrooms in these countries (where possible) to get the right car. Once this is done then the cost issues start.

1.     Make a call and or video call with the seller and request to view the vehicle in question. Once you are happy with the car, pay for it. With our team, we have partners who visit the seller and verify the vehicle and test drive it before making the purchase. This ensures you get what you are paying for.

2.     The car has to get to port. Depending on how far it is, there is a cost to drive it or carry it to the port. This cost depends on distance to the port and country.

3.     Pre-shipment inspection. This is a requirement by the Kenyan Government that all goods that cost more than KES 500,000 be inspected at the country of origin before they are shipped to Kenya. Various companies have been mandated to carry out this exercise by KRA. This cost and service is country dependent. Some countries like Singapore don’t offer this service and all their cars are inspected on arrival. This does not exempt them however, they are still inspected on arrival before you pay Duty

4.     Shipping. Again the price ranges on size of vehicle, bikes are cheapest, then cars, SUVs , trucks and larger machinery in that order. Distance to Mombasa also plays a part and lastly whether its shipped RORO (Roll On Roll Out- car is driven in and out) or inside a container which is a bit more costly.

5.     Mombasa – port charges. Most cost cater to about 21 days at the port to facilitate clearance. Additional costs apply for any extra days past that.

6.     Customs – This is dependent on type of vehicle and year. It’s tabulated based on existing price of the car when new (CRSP) and you can download this and the “Valuation template” from KRA website. The costs change periodically and it’s important for you to keep checking to ensure you have the most current version of the documents. It is also important to note that not all makes and models are represented and for those models that are not, the Duty will be tabulated once the vehicle gets to Mombasa

7.     Delivery to you. Depending on where you stay, there are additional charges to drive or truck the car to you.

8.     Additional costs. This may include insurance, identity labelling, buying fire extinguishers, first aid and reflectors.

Lastly, you are welcome to use professional importers like myself (ABC Motors) to get this done for you hassle free. We have partners in most import countries who verify the vehicle and test before purchase. Further to this we facilitate the entire process right to your door. Check us out on Facebook @abcmotorsltd or www.abcmotors.co.ke.

Headlights 101 – A Short Guide to Your Car Headlamps

From Candle and Oil Carriage lamps in the late 1880, Headlights have come a long way. The need to travel faster at night necessitating the development of better brighter headlights for greater down-road visibility. This has led to the development of newer, better options for headlights so much so that vehicle owners can now pick headlights not only for their brightness/ effectiveness but also for their aesthetic appeal.

There are three main types of modern headlights in use today. These are:

a.     Halogen

b.     Xenon/HID/Arch

c.     LED

Halogen

Photo courtesy of https://www.1addicts.com/

Halogen are improvements of incandescent headlights (sealed beam lights) that are still used on Classic cars. Halogen (iodide and bromine) are monovalent elements (gases) that readily form negative ions. These gases protect the tungsten filament within the bulb and prevent soot formation. This keeps the bulb bright and lasts a long time.

Halogen headlights are the most widely used headlights among car makers as they are comparatively cheap but produce a lot of heat making handling them while in use quite difficult.

Colour temperature is usually around 3,000K resulting in a yellow hue while Lumens are fairly low at about 1,500 meaning that although it is bright a few meters ahead, its down-road visibility is sacrificed.

Xenon or High Intensity Discharge (HID)

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Xenon Headlights do not use a metal filament to create light. They instead create a high voltage arc between 2 electrodes. You can think of them as a controlled bold of lightening happening in a small tube.

The bulb is filled with Xenon gas and as it ignites as a result of the “lightning”, it produces a bluish/ white light. This process creates far less heat as compared to Halogen. However Xenon lights need a warm up period before achieving their maximum brightness. Once up and running, they can get extremely bright and this has led to some xenon headlights being banned in some countries due to blinding on coming drivers.

Xenon are far brighter than Halogen producing about 3,000 Lumens to Halogens 1,500. They however have a lifetime of about 2,000 hours and can be quite expensive.

LED

Photo Courtesy of https://www.jensenfleet.ie/

Although the technology is not new, having been used in electronics as far back as the late sixties, its application to headlights and other general lighting solutions is surprisingly recent.

Light Emitting Diodes (LED) are popular in newer cars. They work by converting electricity into light through diodes in the headlight via a process known as electroluminescence. This method is very energy efficient as little to no heat is created; almost all energy is converted to light making it quite bright and able to last a long time.

LED headlights are a bit more expensive than the other two but last longer than both under normal use. They have a range of between 4,000 and 12,000 Lumens thus vastly improving down road visibility. Their small diodes allow for controlled light emission significantly reducing glare on oncoming drivers without compromising on effectiveness.

Numerous options are now available for older models and are easy to retrofit.

In Conclusion

These are the three most popular types of headlights available in the market. It is however important to note that new technologies continue to be developed and are being introduced into the market. One of these key advances is BMW’s Laser headlight technology which is available on its latest model as an add on for $10,000. They are only equipped as brights as the laser light cannot be regulated (Dimmed). They are either on or off.

For now though, LED remains king of the headlights due to its versatility, ease of use, longevity and good looks. It is definitely the choice for you.

How To Avoid BMW Spare Part Nightmares In Kenya

Drivers of both old and new BMWs need car parts if they are to avoid costly garage repairs. The technology involved in the design and manufacture of newer BMWs means that there may be less that the owner-maintainer can do; however, you could still save money in key areas. Drivers of older models may be able to repair and service their cars without ever taking them to a garage if they know where to get the best BMW parts.

Seeking out BMW parts

Whether you’re an owner of a new BMW looking for alloy wheels or body parts, or the driver of an older style BMW looking for an engine or gearbox, you need to find dealers who can supply the parts you need. New BMW parts can be expensive, so a great place to go is a breaker or dismantler who has good quality pre-owned car parts for sale at a more reasonable price. This is especially true for older BMW models, where parts are likely to be out of production. The recent scrappage scheme in the UK has added a surge of quality pre-owned parts. Where once your weekend would be spent travelling to specialist yards or particular dealers in order to hunt down a specific BMW car part, today’s owners can sit in their homes and search online: Cheaper, faster, and helping to recycle.

BMWs that are driven by corporate personnel are unlikely to be serviced by their drivers. They will be lease or contract hire vehicles, with a service agreement that ensures that every BMW car part is sourced new and fitted by a professional. Many BMWs, however, are bought and driven by individuals who love the style, build quality and performance of these cars – and these are often the drivers who save money by maintaining the car themselves. By having access to car dismantlers across the country, these owners can get hold of the BMW car parts they are looking for and have them delivered to the door – often saving time and money. Parts sourced this way can be good quality, reliable parts and carry a guarantee, so that you can be certain you’re making the right choice.

Ford supplier Flex-n-Gate opens $160 million plant in Detroit

Detroit — General Motors‘ strategy of producing its current pickups through the launch of the next-gen Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra appears to be working but will be tested through the end of the year.

Despite sales declines in the third quarter, including estimated double-digit slides in September, sales of the pickups are actually up 0.6 percent for the year through September.

Our brands are very well-positioned for the fourth quarter when our next wave of new products start shipping in high volume,” said Kurt McNeil, GM U.S. vice president of sales operations, citing some concern about low inventories.

Because of those concerns, GM curtailed incentives last month. That contributed to estimated declines of 19 percent for the Silverado and 35 percent for the Sierra, according to the Automotive News Data Center.

“It is a really tricky balance. You never know how a launch is going to go,” said Michelle Krebs, executive analyst at Autotrader. “They’ve sold down well. It’s going to be really important for them to ramp up without any glitches.”

The incentive pullback allowed Fiat Chrysler’s Ram pickup to outsell the Silverado for the past two months in the U.S., according to estimates from the Automotive News Data Center.

GM’s incentive spending, according to Autodata, was down $710 for Sierra and down $315 for Silverado compared with August. For the year, incentive spending on the Silverado was $6,186 — up $787 from a year earlier — and down $802 on Sierra to $4,542, Autodata reports.

That compares with Ford’s average incentive spending on the F series of $3,880 per unit through September. Ram, which also launched a redesigned pickup at the beginning of the year and continues to produce the previous generation, was at $6,183 — up $58 from a year ago.

FCA and GM had similar strategies for continuing to produce the outgoing pickup with the redesigned version, but they implemented the plans differently.

GM did so while changing its plants over and shipping the trucks from Fort Wayne, Ind., to its Oshawa, Ontario, plant for final assembly and paint. FCA, which had some early production problems, is building the redesigned trucks at a new plant.

“We haven’t heard about production issues with GM like we did with Ram,” Edmunds senior analyst Ivan Drury said. “That was one of the biggest hindrances for them. They couldn’t get their lineup out when it was supposed to happen.”

Ram’s pickup sales are even with last year.

GM hasn’t said when it plans to stop producing the outgoing model. FCA is expected to continue producing the outgoing model until the end of 2019 or early 2020.

Porsche sees opportunity to broaden subscriptions

Detroit — General Motors‘ strategy of producing its current pickups through the launch of the next-gen Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra appears to be working but will be tested through the end of the year.

Despite sales declines in the third quarter, including estimated double-digit slides in September, sales of the pickups are actually up 0.6 percent for the year through September.

Our brands are very well-positioned for the fourth quarter when our next wave of new products start shipping in high volume,” said Kurt McNeil, GM U.S. vice president of sales operations, citing some concern about low inventories.

Because of those concerns, GM curtailed incentives last month. That contributed to estimated declines of 19 percent for the Silverado and 35 percent for the Sierra, according to the Automotive News Data Center.

“It is a really tricky balance. You never know how a launch is going to go,” said Michelle Krebs, executive analyst at Autotrader. “They’ve sold down well. It’s going to be really important for them to ramp up without any glitches.”

The incentive pullback allowed Fiat Chrysler’s Ram pickup to outsell the Silverado for the past two months in the U.S., according to estimates from the Automotive News Data Center.

GM’s incentive spending, according to Autodata, was down $710 for Sierra and down $315 for Silverado compared with August. For the year, incentive spending on the Silverado was $6,186 — up $787 from a year earlier — and down $802 on Sierra to $4,542, Autodata reports.

That compares with Ford’s average incentive spending on the F series of $3,880 per unit through September. Ram, which also launched a redesigned pickup at the beginning of the year and continues to produce the previous generation, was at $6,183 — up $58 from a year ago.

FCA and GM had similar strategies for continuing to produce the outgoing pickup with the redesigned version, but they implemented the plans differently.

GM did so while changing its plants over and shipping the trucks from Fort Wayne, Ind., to its Oshawa, Ontario, plant for final assembly and paint. FCA, which had some early production problems, is building the redesigned trucks at a new plant.

“We haven’t heard about production issues with GM like we did with Ram,” Edmunds senior analyst Ivan Drury said. “That was one of the biggest hindrances for them. They couldn’t get their lineup out when it was supposed to happen.”

Ram’s pickup sales are even with last year.

GM hasn’t said when it plans to stop producing the outgoing model. FCA is expected to continue producing the outgoing model until the end of 2019 or early 2020.

Toyota Car decline overshadows light-truck gain

Detroit — General Motors‘ strategy of producing its current pickups through the launch of the next-gen Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra appears to be working but will be tested through the end of the year.

Despite sales declines in the third quarter, including estimated double-digit slides in September, sales of the pickups are actually up 0.6 percent for the year through September.

Our brands are very well-positioned for the fourth quarter when our next wave of new products start shipping in high volume,” said Kurt McNeil, GM U.S. vice president of sales operations, citing some concern about low inventories.

Because of those concerns, GM curtailed incentives last month. That contributed to estimated declines of 19 percent for the Silverado and 35 percent for the Sierra, according to the Automotive News Data Center.

“It is a really tricky balance. You never know how a launch is going to go,” said Michelle Krebs, executive analyst at Autotrader. “They’ve sold down well. It’s going to be really important for them to ramp up without any glitches.”

The incentive pullback allowed Fiat Chrysler’s Ram pickup to outsell the Silverado for the past two months in the U.S., according to estimates from the Automotive News Data Center.

GM’s incentive spending, according to Autodata, was down $710 for Sierra and down $315 for Silverado compared with August. For the year, incentive spending on the Silverado was $6,186 — up $787 from a year earlier — and down $802 on Sierra to $4,542, Autodata reports.

That compares with Ford’s average incentive spending on the F series of $3,880 per unit through September. Ram, which also launched a redesigned pickup at the beginning of the year and continues to produce the previous generation, was at $6,183 — up $58 from a year ago.

FCA and GM had similar strategies for continuing to produce the outgoing pickup with the redesigned version, but they implemented the plans differently.

GM did so while changing its plants over and shipping the trucks from Fort Wayne, Ind., to its Oshawa, Ontario, plant for final assembly and paint. FCA, which had some early production problems, is building the redesigned trucks at a new plant.

“We haven’t heard about production issues with GM like we did with Ram,” Edmunds senior analyst Ivan Drury said. “That was one of the biggest hindrances for them. They couldn’t get their lineup out when it was supposed to happen.”

Ram’s pickup sales are even with last year.

GM hasn’t said when it plans to stop producing the outgoing model. FCA is expected to continue producing the outgoing model until the end of 2019 or early 2020.