About 78 places in the world use right-hand drive while the remaining use left-hand drive systems. Cars with the steering wheel on the right side are designed to drive on the left side of the road. Vehicles with the steering wheel on the left side are made to drive on the right side of the way. Major areas once under British colonies still drive on the left-hand side of the road.
A few significant countries accustomed to the right-hand drive system include the United Kingdom, Australia, India, South Africa, New Zealand, Jamaica, Japan, Malaysia, Nigeria, etc..
Hub Of The Automotive Industry In Africa
Nigeria, the African automotive industry hub, has more than 180 inhabitants. You can imagine what’s going on the roads. Yes, there is the potential for every imaginable car to find a buyer. On the other hand, road safety becomes a big challenge.
Using Nigeria as our favorite country for this topic allows us to answer the questions below based on our experiences. Indeed, there are some other questions necessary to be asked regarding road safety, but we would like to start with these four that have good connections to importing used cars with a right-hand drive to Nigeria:
But what about the cars imported to the countries using different drive systems?
Is there any risk to road users?
What about going to the extent of changing the position of the steering wheel, known as steering conversion?
Finally, what is the second-hand value of a car with a right-hand drive system today?
It’s a land of opportunity, and Nigerians are doing well there. You’ll know that well if you’re a part of that demographic.
Life’s good there.
A big part is giving back to those who helped you make the best of the opportunities.
I’ve seen many Nigerians and other Africans, in general, do just that. And I’ve noticed a pattern of what they send and why.
Well, some of the best automobiles come from Europe. They buy them from the UK and send them back home to Nigeria.
But it’s a lot easier said than done.
It can present a lot of hassle from right up front and shortly.
Physical, behavioral, and last but not least, legal. But should that stop you from doing what’s right?
Not at all. And here I will tell you all you need to know to do it the best you can.
Read also → Why is car steering conversion right-hand to left-hand drive not worth it?
Example: Sending Right-hand Drive Cars from the UK To Nigeria
If you’re planning on sending a car from the UK to Nigeria. Then there’s good news, and there’s uncomfortable news.
The good news is that you will find some of the best cars at lower prices in the United Kingdom.
It doesn’t matter if it’s brand new or used. The cars that you can get are going to be amazing. But that’s all the good there. However, challenges arise when choosing to use the vehicle in a country with a driving system different from that in the UK.
The first and most pertinent issue is the driver’s position in the car.
In the United Kingdom, as far as the driving laws go, all the cars here have right-hand drive systems.
And it has been that way from the very beginning.
But since 1972, Nigerians have been using left-hand drive cars. And it is illegal to get a vehicle that doesn’t have a left-seat driver.
So what do people do?
Why Nigerians Buy Cars From Right-Hand Drive Countries
Now, this is difficult, but not impossible. Many Nigerians buy cars if they get a great deal on the vehicle.
It involves a process of redesigning the seat and steering arrangement. Have a look at the gist of it and then decide if it’s worth it or not.
It all starts with altering the steering wheel’s position from the right-hand side to the left. That will entail opening up the dashboard and then tweaking the machinery.
Then, it’s time to set the vehicle’s dashboard into the proper position. It is a crucial step in the process and needs much attention to get it right.
Now, the mechanic will have to alter the position between the rack and pinion of the car.
After that comes the turn for putting the shift knob of the vehicle into the correct position, it is also going to be as important, if not more.
And now, for the final step in the process, it’s time to set the side mirror into position.
It might look simple upfront, but it’s anything but that.
You’ll get the right parts with decent quality if you want to make sure this works right. And more importantly, you’ll have to ensure the mechanic who does all this is reliable.
Quality of service is going to matter a lot in this.
Are you down for all this?
The Reality of Making This Change to the Vehicle
Well, even if everything goes right and you successfully change the right-hand drive car to a left-hand drive one.
But making this change to the vehicle is only partially risk-free.
For this operation to go well and keep working for you for a long time, Every bolt with the system must be in place.
And I’m giving rather conservative estimates here.
And then you complete it even.
Still, it would be best to regain the mobility precisely as before. And the whole orthopedic system is going to be compromised.
Long story short, you will only regain some of the functionalities.
The same is the case here, but it can be perilous because of the unpredictability of the whole thing.
Imagine you’re driving around, and then suddenly, this thing breaks down on you.
Your life might be at risk, or someone else’s. So, this isn’t something that you can take lightly.
What is the best way to avoid all of this?
Why not bypass this left-right drive interchange altogether?
How can you do that?
Buy your desired Car from Germany.
Germany is synonymous with impressive technology. And that is very much the case with automobiles.
The awesomeness of German automobiles is not news, and people worldwide want these.
But that’s not why I suggest you buy your desired car from Germany and return it to Nigeria.
Do you know that Germans use left-hand drive vehicles, just like Nigerians?
So why not buy the vehicle you want to send home from Germany instead of the United Kingdom?
Not only will you get yourself a high-quality vehicle, but you won’t have to go through all the hassle and the expenses for the side change.
Then, the concern becomes logistics and who to buy from. How will the whole deal go down and all that?
Then let me tell you that you will be OK with this.
Want used vehicles? You’ll get that.
Want new ones? You’ll get that as well.
This brings us to the end of the article, and now it’s up to you to decide where to buy your next vehicle. Remember that every change we make in Nigeria somehow influences the automotive industry in Africa. Despite this, let’s keep making positive changes for our continent, Africa.
Buying from Germany is going to make things a lot easier for you. But the most important among them all is the safety factor.
Your choice would be intelligent and wise.