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Tips to avoid getting scammed when buying a car in South Africa in 2021

Increasingly more South African motorists are buying cars online. That’s the easy part. The challenge is: what car should the motorist buy, how and when? Read on further and discover what can be done.1

Anxiety about buying cars online1

Google South Africa has noticed that many South Africans are searching for car information in the early morning hours, which could mean there is a general trend on anxiety in buying cars online. The most asked question was whether the timing to buy a vehicle is correct. The frequency of this question increased by more than 9 times between January and February 2020 and March and April 2020.

What has caused this increased online activity?1

It seems that the lockdown during the pandemic has forced people to go digital, especially when you are told you must stay at home. People have remained at home either to comply with Government regulations or out of caution for the pandemic. Before the lockdown periods, prospective buyers would visit an average 2.2 showrooms and do 1.4 drives before purchasing the car. Now, it appears that 93% of car purchases occurred because of the availability of the Internet, whilst 56% of consumers indicated they would be buying their next car online.

Has the pandemic changed the world forever?1

It seems that people have stopped going places to do physical things in just about every sphere of life. The pandemic has forced society to go digital, working from either their cell phones or computers. Now that they have started doing so, they wonder why they haven’t been doing this before.

What are prospective buyers up to?1

These buyers prefer to conduct virtual reality test drives at home and find out all about their car from videos on the Internet. Then, they visit a digital showroom and investigate using an online configurator.

Unfortunately, scammers are also taking advantage of this new online trend and using fake brands and websites to trick consumers into parting with their hard-earned money.

How to avoid being scammed1

The most important step consumers can take to protect themselves from being scammed is to conduct good research on the car they are after. Obtaining thorough knowledge of the prices and car specifications will reveal fake information. For example, when you know what the average going price is for a particular model at a specific mileage, you’ll be immediately suspicious when you see a car with high mileage at a low price.


Buying car insurance is not a straightforward matter, and that’s why this article can only be treated as information. Anyone wishing to buy a car insurance product should first consult a certified financial adviser for expert advice.

Whether you buy a car online or not, it still requires adequate car insurance cover. In fact, if you are contemplating purchasing a new car that is to be financed by a bank, you must, by law, take out comprehensive car insurance. Affordable, comprehensive car insurance can be purchased from PMD, so why not contact them at your earliest convenience?

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