Mexican Car Dealers to Run Down Cross-Border Black Market


Alejandro Villalobos, an automotive dealer displayed a green Toyota Sequoia 2002 covered 90kmiles outside a closed supermarket that doubles as a used cars one day a week. Alejandro set the price as 110,000 pesos ($8,500), painted only word on the windscreen, as ‘legalized’.

There are more than 6million imported vehicles inMexicothat are not supposed to be sold in Mexican market. They are actually used vehicles, both cars and trucks and took over the borders from US, not legally registered in Mexico.  Few Mexican citizens opt for non-registered cars as the price of such cars are lesser than the legalized vehicles that go under a bureaucratic process, where a buyer pays only sales and duty tax. However,Mexico’s retailers say that this illegal business is actually hampering their used car sales.

Mexico Automotive Industry Association president Eduardo Solis, says that US cars are messing with their country and have lessened the price on both new and used vehicles.  A decade ago, dealers sold 10 new cars for every 1000 Mexicans, and now the number has been reduced to 8 vehicles for 1000 customers, while the minimum age of any vehicle is not more than 15years.

The cross-border black markets haven’t evolved recently, but it is there in the business from many years. Federico Estevez, professor at Autonomous Technological Institute said that it is an ancient trade inMexicoand it began with Model T.

Long ago, the country had a closed automotive market, where people could only purchase vehicles developed inMexico, notably VW Beetle that was being produced in nation after a long time production was ceased elsewhere across the globe. The vehicles available in closed market were really pricey that prohibited poor people to buy such cars, encouraging the illegal business. Initially, the flow of illegal import vehicles was mild, but now it has been rising. Many of the vehicles have been brought from US and people find illegal ways to drive them on Mexican roads. Dealers and makers say import business is entering the nation due to corruption in the courts and custom posts.

The country’s automotive industry has been developing and many leading makers are having manufacturing plants inMexico, offering vehicles forUnited StatesandLatin Americamarkets.

The lax enforcement and political assurance of amnesties have motivated more illegal imports. Some politicians support imports in exchange of votes.  Few people prefer imported cars as they are considered having better quality than the ones available inMexico.


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