Is there a risk in buying a Japanese import?

I'm looking to replace our ageing Vauxhall Zafira and a local garage is selling Volkswagen models imported from Japan. Most have very low mileages but all seem to have DSG gearboxes. As they are models specced for Japan, rather than Japan only models are they a safe bet?

Asked on 28 January 2020 by Stefan Chilcott

Answered by Andrew Brady
Tread carefully. The cars are likely to be odd spec and, depending on how much preparation work the garage does, might have some strange features (such as a non-European navigation or infotainment systems). You might even find it's difficult to insure a Japanese import and it's likely to be harder to sell at resale time. What sort of history do they have, too? There are plenty of good second-hand Volkswagens around - I'd look elsewhere.
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