Maintenance fees for Kei cars and regular cars - Waku Waku

Explore, Experience
Enjoy Japan

Maintenance fees for Kei cars and regular cars

Lifestyle

Maintenance fees for Kei cars and regular cars

Let's learn about the difference in maintenance fees between a kei car and a regular car in Japan, which you should consider before buying a car!

Pan Pan

Pan Pan

Published on 30 Jul, 12:00

1. What is a kei car?

Kei car, also known as the yellow plate car, is a light automobile first produced around the Showa era 24 (1949). Due to its ultra-compact design, which is suitable for traveling on Japanese streets, it is considered a national car in Japan.

Maintenance fees for Kei cars and regular cars

The standard size of Kei cars has changed over time. A Kei car must be less than 3.40m long, less than 1.48m wide, under 2m high, and have an engine of only 660cc (100-150cc for recently launched ones). It is easy to spot a Kei car on the street because of its distinct design. And you may have noticed that usually, families in Japan will have at least one Kei car used for grocery shopping. Why is that?

2. The costs to keep a car in Japan

In Japan, buying a car is one thing, and maintaining it is another. People usually have more problems with the maintenance costs rather than the initial car purchase cost. The maintenance cost in Japanese is 維持費 (ijihi), which includes:

a. 車検代 (shakendai): periodic vehicle inspection fee

b. 税金 (zeikin): taxes

c. 保険料 (hokenryou): insurance

d. メンテナンス費用: maintenance fees

e. Other costs (gasoline, parking fees...)

Now let's go into details about each cost.

Maintenance fees for Kei cars and regular cars

A. Periodic vehicle inspection fee:

For new cars, it is once every 3 years, then once every 2 years, the car must be inspected. Routine inspections at the dealerships are usually more expensive than gas stations and shaken specialized stores, but the quality is not much better.

There is always a sticker on the car's front windshield with the next scheduled date to take the car for inspections, so don't forget it, or you will get fined.

B. Taxes:

There are 2 types of taxes, one that is already included in the shaken which is 自動車重量税 (jidoushajyuryozei – vehicle weight tax) and the other one that is paid annually is 自動車税 (jidoushazei – vehicle tax). By looking at the names, you can already tell whether a Kei car or a regular car usually bears higher taxes.

C. Insurance:

There are 2 types of compulsory insurance, and one is also included in the shaken according to the government regulations, which is 自賠責保険 (jibaisekihoken). The second one is voluntary insurance, which means that when an accident occurs, an insurance company will help with the compensation 任意保険 (ninihoken). You can go to insurance companies to choose the right package for voluntary insurance. You should note that the insurance fees will vary by age, vehicle type, and driver's license level (yellow, blue, or green license).

D. Maintenance fees:

For example, oil change, battery change, change of the rubber band of the wiper... then this is the maintenance fee.

E. Other costs:

Depending on the type of vehicle, the fuel cost, parking fee, car wash fee... will also vary.

3. Comparing maintenance costs of Kei cars and regular cars

Maintenance fees for Kei cars and regular cars

A. Kei car

  • Periodic vehicle inspection fee: Varies depending on the store. The Super Fast package is about 9,500yen, and the Super Safe package costs about 24,786yen.
  • Mandatory insurance: 21,140yen
  • Vehicle weight tax: 6,600yen
  • Sticker fee: 1,100yen
  • Annual car tax: 7,200yen
  • Voluntary insurance: 30,000 – 50,000yen/year
  • Maintenance fee: about 10,000yen/year (excludes tire change)
  • Other costs: 5,000 – 15,000yen/month

B. Regular car

  • Periodic vehicle inspection fee: Varies depending on the store. The Super Fast package is about 9500yen, and the Super Safe package costs about 26,588 – 28,475yen.
  • Mandatory insurance: 21,550yen
  • Vehicle weight tax: for a small-sized car 16,400yen, for a medium-sized car 24,600yen, for a large-sized car 32,800yen
  • Sticker fee: 1,200yen
  • Annual car tax: Under 1000cc costs 29,500yen/ year. From 1000 – under 15000cc costs 34,500yen. From 1500cc – under 2000cc costs 39,500yen.
  • Voluntary insurance: 30,000 – 50,000yen/ year
  • Maintenance fee: about 15,000yen/ year (excludes tire change)
  • Other costs: 8,000 – 20,000yen/ month

(This comparison table is for reference)

4. Should you buy a Kei car or a regular car?

Each type of car has its own advantages and disadvantages, so this decision should be based on your usage needs and family budget.

If your family is small, with a limited budget, and you have no need to go out too much or too far away, the Kei car is a reasonable choice. Depending on the year manufactured, the mileage traveled, the car's condition, the sales price will vary. However, you only need about 20-30man (equivalent to 50-60 million VND) for a used Kei car, and you can already own a convenient and compact Kei car. Since it is a light vehicle, if you use it to travel long distances or climb hills and cross streams, it will be hard on the Kei car. It will go on a strike.

If you are like my family and love to go out but have a limited budget, you can buy a regular 4-seater car like the current Honda Fit 1300cc. In addition, on the day that I got my license, my husband had to add my name to the insurance, which cost about 980yen for switching the insured from 1 person to 2 people, with the insurance ending in July the following year. My family bought the cheapest insurance package, so for any family with 2 drivers, you will need to account for this amount.

0

From the same writer

Maintenance fees for Kei cars and regular cars

Let's learn about the difference in maintenance fees between a kei car and a ...

Pan Pan Pan Pan · Lifestyle · 2 months ago

0
My first time selling old stuff in Japan

It was the first time I tried selling second-hand stuff to a second-hand stor...

Pan Pan Pan Pan · Lifestyle · 7 months ago

0
Experiencing the light-up event at Tokyo Mega Illumi Racecourse - 大井競馬場

During the winter in Japan, the whole country is filled with illuminations to...

Pan Pan Pan Pan · Travel · 9 months ago

0

Read also

Got something wrong on our system. Please reload and try again!
Success action!