In order for your car purchase from Auto Trader Japan to go as smoothly as possible we have set up the following guidelines and terms of trading. If there is anything you are unsure of please contact us.

Before You Bid At Auction
A minimum deposit of ¥200,000 Yen or 20% of the vehicle price (whichever amount is greater) has to have been deposited with us.

Placing Bids On Auctions Online
Review the vehicle data of online auctions and place bids on vehicles. Be sure to note the full FOB prices including all fees for purchases. We will confirm ALL bids by phone before going ahead with any final purchase.
The starting price gives no indication of the actual final selling price, it is merely a starting price. Cars that begin at 0 may sell for 1,000,000 yen and cars that begin at 300,000 may sell for 350,000. The only thing you can know from the start price is that it won’t sell for any cheaper than that!

At The Auction
The vehicles are personally inspected by us at auction and a full description given to the customer.
We only ever bid on confirmed orders with final verbal go ahead from you.

We will always endeavor to bid on vehicles live at auction in order to reduce costs.

  1. We will bid up to the pre-determined amount the customer has set for the vehicle however we reserve the right to overbid by 10% if necessary to win the auction.
  2. In some cases a vehicle will not reach it’s reserve at auction. If a vehicle is unsold we will automatically negotiate via the auction house within the clients budget. This includes the negotiation fee.
  3. Multiple bidders on the same car. At times we have more than one party bidding on the same vehicle. In this situation, the party with the higher bid will win the car regardless of the other party bid amount.

After The Auction
If successful, the purchase price of the vehicle at auction is forwarded to the customer along with the FOB or C&F fees associated with it. If shipping is pre-paid (varies from country to country) or shipping insurance is also required please contact us as it is separate from our agent’s fee.
Successful purchases are transported to the Port. A full set of 10-20 photographs are taken when the car arrives and are then forwarded to you.
Vehicles are shipped approximately 14 days after full payment being received depending on shipping schedules and us receiving documentation from the owner. The faster you pay, the faster we can get your car on a ship

Final Payment
We require 100% payment prior to shipping. We only accept payments in Japanese yen, unless otherwise agreed.

Late Payment and Storage
If payment has not been made by the client within 48 hours of the issue date of the invoice by Auto Trader Japan. We reserve the right to charge a penalty fee based on the vehicle value.

Storage in Japan is expensive and each logistics/holding yard has a limited amount of courtesy parking before shipping. Once this grace period is over a parking fee of 500 JPY per day per vehicle will be charged.

Our Auction Fee
The standard auction fee for dealers is from 100,000 to 150,000 Yen depending on the value and volume of cars purchased. The auction fee for a one off retail customer requiring instruction from start to end of the export process is 150,0000 Yen. Higher end, more expensive cars will attract a higher agent’s fee as negotiated prior to sale. This agent’s fee covers basic auction fees, inland transport, customs clearance, GST and road tax reclaimation and paperwork fees as well as our own profit. Please note however that this standard agent’s fee only covers our member auctions in the Tokyo area where we are based. Any cars bought outside of Tokyo may incur excess inland transport to Yokohama or other destination ports. Auction fees and buyer’s advocate fees may also vary depending on through which system the car is purchased. We will endevour to explain all fees prior to each individual purchase and in any case will make sure the total cost is always under the FOB budget given.

Negotiating on Cars from Local Dealers’ Yards
In the case of cars we buy on negotiation from Japanese dealers’ yards our standard agent’s fee is the yard price plus 150,000 Yen for the FOB. This fee covers all the extra work involved in negotiating the sale plus most extra transport involved due to remote locations and sending a car carrier out to tranport a single car to the nearest port. If the car is in a really remote location such as Okinawa or Hokkaido we will quote accordingly. Please note that not all Japanese car dealers are willing to sell cars for export as many make their margins on the on road costs when a domestic sale is made. The cars we list on our site as dealer cars are those whose yard owners we have contacted and they have expressed agreement to sell for export at the given price.

Auto Trader Japan offers a service to assist you to import your own vehicle, which provides the opportunity for significant cost savings. Accordingly, there is no warranty should there be faults with the vehicle that were not included in the description provided by the supplier of the vehicle or auction. We inspect every vehicle ourselves but some things cannot be seen immediately i.e. Vehicles are cheap to import because there is some risk involved.

If warranty is a critical factor to you for the purchase of a vehicle then this says something about your risk profile and you may need to reconsider importing directly versus buying something locally that you can see and touch.

You need to carefully consider the immediate and usually quite large cost savings of direct importing versus the cost of buying something locally from a dealer just to receive the benefits of a warranty (that you may never require).

Your Country’s Import & Registration Restrictions
We assume that the buyer knows what can and cannot be imported to the destination country. We will not bear responsibility for cars purchased that are not eligible to import.

We assume that buyers are familiar with the regulations concerning import approval and compliance in their own countries. As such, the responsibility to comply and register the car is entirely the buyer’s. We are the experts at the Japan end and can arrange everything to do with the actual car purchase and export from Japan to your country.

Customs, compliance, tax, duty, registration is also entirely the buyer’s responsibility so please make sure you are familiar with all the regulations governing car importing into your country.

Car Condition
With the condition of the car you need to understand that we are selling second hand cars that will usually require some work. As a guide we often advise people that even an auction grade 3.5-4 car will need about $1000 to be spent on paint and minor repairs above and beyond what is in the description in order to bring the car up to showroom condition. Many dealers are prepared to do a lot of work on a vehicle before they sell it as they can get work done at wholesale prices and cars end up even cheaper. Second hand cars are by definition not in new condition and therefore scratches and small dents are to be expected on most vehicles. Lower grade vehicles often need body work and repaints of scratched and dented panels. Many vehicles need a full service, new battery, tyre replacement and full engine tune. Higher mileage vehicles may need certain wearable parts replaced.

Obvious wearable parts include tyres, battery and brake pads. After driving for a while other items that need replacing may also be noticed as would be the case with purchasing any other second hand car. In general, the Japanese really look after their cars and they are in better condition than similarly aged cars in the west but please take heed of the condition notes we make.

We will translate all information we have concerning the car fully and honestly to the extent of our knowledge. Only if we have communicated something incorrectly can you make a claim. (Eg. car is diesel when you specifically asked for petrol)

Auto Trader Japan is not responsible for problems that are not recognizable when the car is standing still at auction. We are able to start a car but not road test it prior to purchase. Hence we can usually detect most mechanical problems but a transmission problem that occurs only in 2nd gear will not be seen. Issues that can be detected only when a car is put up on a hoist or driven extensively fall into the same category.

Regarding the cleanliness of the car, please try to understand that many people sell their cars in the auctions without cleaning or polishing them. We will run cars through a high pressure hose wash when sending them to countries that have strict quarantine laws regarding dirt on cars but as a rule we do not detail cars before we send them.

Please be careful when the car first arrives. Auto Trader Japan is not responsible for engine problems caused by cold-starting vehicles and immediately revving them hard after several weeks of storage and shipping.

To increase the quality of the car you are purchasing and reduce the amount of money needed for re-conditioning costs the most obvious thing to do is buy a high grade car and be prepared to spend a higher price. Cheap cars are always cheap for a reason. Quite obviously if you want a nice car you must spend more. It is always worth it in the end.

“AS IS” Policy
Auto Trader Japan sells vehicles in ‘as is’ condition. Specifically, cars are sold as how they appear and are described on the Auto Trader Japan website or by our staff from auction. “As is” condition means that vehicles are sold in the exact state in which they are described. Because of the nature of cars, it is difficult (almost impossible) to be aware of everything right and wrong with the car but we try to get as close as we can. Although Auto Trader Japan does its best in selecting quality cars, customers must always understand that there is some risk associated with purchasing a used vehicle. We try hard to reduce as much of this risk as possible by providing as much information about the vehicle as possible.

Payments and Order Cancellations
Once a car in our stock or a car from Auction has been purchased we expect full payment to be made within two days. A Telegraphic Transfer/ Bank Transfer receipt must be scanned and sent to us as soon as the payment has been made.

An auction deposit is refundable prior to purchase but if the customer requests a refund for any reason, 10,000 Yen will be deducted to cover phone calls and admin costs. Refunds will always be made minus bank charges required for the transfer.

Auto Trader Japan will not accept order cancellations for any reason after purchase from auction. Make sure that you are certain about any purchase before giving the go ahead for us to buy on your behalf.

Shipping Damage and Theft
Auto Trader Japan is not liable for possible occurrences and/or deterioration after the vehicle has been transported to the port in Japan. Although very rare, customers must always understand that there is a certain amount of risk associated with transporting vehicles overseas. We use the same shipping lines that are used by new car manufacturers and would like to say that damage never occurs but it occasionally does and the shipping lines will not take responsibility for this. It is usually always minor but is something we cannot give any guarantee for. Shipping insurance will pay for total loss or very major damage that can be proven to have happened in transit but will not cover minor scratches and dents. Theft from cars during transport and shipping is an issue that is also beyond our control and if there are valuable items in the cars that the customer would like sent by post it can be arranged at his/her expense.

Last Word
As a general rule, cars in Japan generally do half the kms per year that similar cars do in western countries such as Australia, England, Canada or the United States and owners really look after their cars and regularly service them. This has to do with driving conditions here and is more often a cultural respect for personal possessions. Also because of the high cost of running a car (biennial shaken- compulsory govt. car inspection, high car taxes, high car parking costs, expensive tolls and fuel) second hand car prices are often half or less what they may be elsewhere in the world. Even taking into account the re-conditioning costs buying cars direct is still much cheaper than buying the same car in similar condition in your own country. Our job is to confirm what the auction inspection reads and to give our own assessment of every car bought whether from our stock or direct from auction and then buy and ship upon your go ahead. We do our best to give as detailed and honest a description as possible and work to help you as much as possible with every purchase. This said, there is always the risk that a problem is unnoticeable at auction or that damage may happen in transit. However, if you consider the thousands of dollars that is saved by buying direct, most people will go ahead and buy. Even worst case scenario is still cheaper than buying retail. If this is not a risk you feel you can take you might be better of paying retail price for something you can see and touch. This is a decision only you can make. We essentially are here to help those who have decided to buy and import their own car.

Your privacy is very important to us. Auto Trader Japan pledges not to share, trade, or otherwise disseminate your private information. We will also take reasonable steps to protect the personal information we hold on behalf of our clients from misuse, loss and unauthorised disclosure.

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※  We reserve the right to amend & update these terms of trade at any time, without prior notice.