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Buying Guide | Purchase a Car in Thailand

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  • Buying Guide | Purchase a Car in Thailand

    The Process of Buying a New Car in Thailand

    Buying a new car anywhere in the world can be exciting, yet a bit stressful if you don’t have sufficient knowledge on the process. In Thailand, expats who wish to buy anew car may be faced with an additional set of stressors that include language barriers and laws. Here, we have a guide to buying a new car in Thailand to help you be more prepared for the buying process.

    After choosing the car you want, you need to reserve the car by paying a deposit. This is because most new cars in Thailand are made to order. Usually the deposit is anywhere from 5,000-10,000 baht. Upon paying, you should get a receipt that includes the details of your new car. From the make and model to the colour and delivery date, the receipt should act as a written confirmation that you have reserved the car. Keep in mind that ordering a new car can take up to 6 months for it to be delivered. However, delivery times vary widely.

    Check over the new car from top to bottom
    Once your car has arrived, check the car from top to bottom. The outside, inside, and how it drives all need to be checked upon receiving. Additionally, any freebies that you were promised need to be verified as well. The warranty, manufacture date, inspection date, and engine number also need to be checked before accepting the car. Bringing a car expert with you to help you check these things can also ease the burden of future issues.

    Verify documents received
    When you receive your car, you should also receive the necessary documents. A car manual, CPTI, temporal red book, tax sticker and car insurance documents should all be in your hands the day you receive the vehicle.

    License Plates
    New cars will feature a red license plate that will be replaced with official white plates in a few months. The red plates cost around 2,500 THB but that cost is refunded when you switch the license plates over to the official white ones. Remember, if you don’t transfer the plates, it could result in a fine by police. And, vehicles with red license plates are restricted to driving only during the day and province in which the car is registered. When you do transfer the red plates to white plates, you should receive the official blue book (ownership) on the same day as the transfer or a few days after. If you financed the new car, you will receive a copy of the blue book with the financial institution listed as the owner. This will go into your name once the car loan is paid in full. The registration paperwork must be taken to the Department of Land Transport. As your car was purchased new, the dealer should do this step for you once you have prepared the following documents:
    • Passport (signed copies of all visa pages and photo page)
    • Certificate of residency (Issued by the Immigration Bureau or applicant’s Embassy), or a work permit. All need to be signed.
    • Valid Thai driving license
    Transferring ownership
    First, you must submit the required paperwork and get it checked by an official. Once the official has checked the paperwork, it must be stamped. If you bought a car from another province, you may be asked to come back in a few days as they will need to verify the details. When you return, you need to inspect the car to make sure the details match the details on the submitted paperwork. After this is done, you will be asked to come back and collect the plates and the Blue Book. The transfer cost is based on the estimated sale value of your car. In addition to the stamp fee, there is a 105 THB transfer fee. The stamp fee is .005 THB from the estimated price. So, if your car is estimated at 300,000 THB, the transfer cost would be (105+ (300,000 x .005)).

    Buyers will pay an initial tax as part of the registration process. As the tax depends on the make and model of your car, it is usually between 800 THB - 10,000 THB per year. Your dealer should be able to tell you how much tax you will be expected to pay. Tax is paid at the same time as the CTPL. This can be done through the Department of Land Transport or a 3rd party representative. After paying the tax, make sure you stick an updated tax sticker on your car. After taking note of these steps in the process of buying a new car, you should feel a bit more at ease as the process isn’t as bad as you may think. Additionally, since a dealership is involved, you most likely have an easier process as they can help guide you along the way. Dealership representatives should also have a better command of the English language to help communicate important details to you more fluidly. Remember, to always check documents and your cars registered numbers, especially if someone else prepares the documents for you.

  • #2
    New tax law could provide spark to Thailand’s global EV hub dream

    The Excise Department in Bangkok revealed a law governing the reduction of the EV tax from 8% to 2% will be published tomorrow in the Royal Gazette and come into effect on Friday, after the Council of State finished vetting the law, and Finance Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith signing it into law. Department spokesman Nattakorn Utensut Nattakorn says now the law is in effect, more EV manufacturers will want to sign deals with the government to jointly promote EV adoption in Thailand.

    “I believe there will be at least 3 to 4 EV manufacturers from Japan and China, and 2 to 3 electric motorcycle makers from Thailand and China signing MoUs this year.”
    Thailand recently introduced state subsidy and tax incentive measures to promote EV production and adoption in the country. Deco Green Energy Co, a Thai electric motorcycle manufacturer and distributor, recently signed an agreement with the Excise Department to promote battery electric vehicles under the government’s subsidy and tax incentive measures.

    Toyota Motor Thailand, Great Wall Motor Manufacturing (Thailand) Co, and MG Sales (Thailand) Co signed similar agreements with the department, which is expected to result in wider adoption of EVs in the kingdom.
    EV manufacturers taking orders from Thai buyers have already delivered around 500 cars to consumers, out of 10,000 orders. They are expected to deliver an additional 1,500 cars after the excise tax reduction law takes effect.


    • #3
      Thai PM promises to accelerate Thailand’s electric vehicle future

      The Thai PM wants to cement Thailand’s reputation as the biggest SE Asian hub for car manufacturing, and electric cars too. Currently Thailand is the world’s 10th largest manufacturer of vehicles (OICA 2021).
      Some of the world’s leading automobile manufacturers – Honda, Toyota, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Suzuki, Mazda, Mercedes Benz, Ford, Volvo and BMW – have manufacturing plants in Thailand. Last year, the production volume of automobiles was 1.69 million. The export volume of automobiles in Thailand was over 850,000 units.

      Now Thailand is aiming to assemble electric vehicles, aka. EVs, and parts. domestically within the next year. This accelerates the earlier target of 2024, according to the Thai PM Prayut Chan-o-cha. The PM says that the government is “speeding up promotion of EV assembly in Thailand” and plans to kick off full EV-builds in the Kingdom during 2023. Earlier, the Thai Energy Ministry’s Energy Planning and Policy Office forecast that sales of EVs in Thailand would rise from 9,000 back in 2018 to 406,000 in 2028, and beyond 1.2 million in 2036. They also project there will be 690 charging stations by that stage.

      Speaking at the Federation of Thai Industries yesterday, the PM said that significant parts, used in the manufacture of EVs, such as batteries, traction motors, battery management services, portable EV chargers, AC/DC converters, inverters, circuit breakers and EV “smart charging” systems will all be manufactured in Thailand over the next few years. The PM also met with the CEO of Foxconn Technology Group on Tuesday to announce plans to start EV assembly in Thailand within a year. That EV facility will serve full end-to-end operations, including design, manufacturing and assembly of EVs within Thailand.

      Already Chinese manufacturers MG and GWM (who currently assemble the Naval H6, Jolion and Ora brands in Rayong, Thailand) have a strong EV presence in Thailand and have become instant hits with the Thai car-buying public. MG, the former iconic British brand, now owned by SAIC Motor Corporation in China, reached their production of 100,000 builds in Thailand in late 2020 and is now manufacturing both hybrid and plug-in models.

      Honda are also building an electric hybrid version of their popular HRV SUV model at a plant in Ayutthayah. Chinese EV manufacturer BYD is also preparing to set up a new manufacturing plant in Thailand where it will make electric cars for right-hand-drive markets including the UK and Australia. Speaking about the acceleration of EV manufacturing in Thailand over the next fe years, the Thai PM said that, despite other parts of the Thai economy being harmed by the closure of borders during the Covid pandemic, car manufacturing has continued to thrive in Thailand and remains the region’s biggest exporter.

      “If all parties join hands together, the Thai economy can recover this year and next.”
      Prayut noted that EV development, of both cars and parts, will be a key part of the Thai government’s ongoing efforts to restructure the Thai economy “to become high technology”. At the same seminar yesterday the federation urged the Thai government to speed up its EV development to stay ahead of Indonesia if it wants to become a major regional EV production hub.Kriengkrai Thiennukul, the FTI’s chairman noted that Thailand “is good at manufacturing cars and auto parts, Indonesia is rich in the resources required to serve the EV industry”.

      “The country has nickel, which is used in the production of lithium batteries.”
      There are currently more than 700,000 workers in Thailand’s automotive industry and the FTI chairman said that a pivot to EV production could also accelerate additional local jobs.


      • #4
        Bugatti in Bangkok: 1 of 20 limited edition sports cars spotted cruising in Thailand

        One of only 20 Bugatti Chiron Sport 110 Ans in the world, valued at US$3.2 million, was spotted cruising around the mean streets of Bangkok on Sunday. Let’s just hope the driver has insurance. The Bugatti, which sports a Cambodian registration plate that reads ‘BOSS,’ is allegedly owned by a Cambodian businessman who is the son of a politician. The mystery man is allegedly married to a ‘High So’ Thai businesswoman worth millions.

        The sports car is one of the fastest cars ever made but probably didn’t get a chance to flex its speed in Bangkok traffic. Only 20 Bugatti Chiron Sport 110 Ans were produced in celebration of Bugatti’s 110th anniversary since the company was founded in 1909 by Ettore Bugatti. The limited edition Bugatti emphasis the company’s French heritage, with the Tricolore “Le Bleu-Blanc-Rouge” flag decorating the body and interior in several places, including the wing mirrors. The car is valued at US$3.2 million, although a used car dealership in Munich, Germany, claimed to be selling one for US$4.5 million in 2019.

        “Is it insured for millions? A motorbike driver won’t be able to fix a scratch on that even if he sells his organs,” one netizen joked.
        Unsurprisingly, the Bugatti Chiron Sport 110 Ans is one of the most expensive cars in the world to insure. With a 10-percent down payment (US$326,000) and a 1.54-percent insurance-to-MSRP ratio, the Chiron Sport 110 Ans costs owners US$50,251 annually in insurance rates or $4,188 per month. The cost of insuring the Bugatti Chiron 110 Ans costs more than buying two Hyundai Kona crossovers (at US$19,240) and insuring them for a year, according to ValuePenguin.