If you want to buy a car in Switzerland, you must know where to look for it. Despite the small population, the Swiss used car market is extensive, offering lucrative prices.
Best used car websites in Switzerland:
There are several websites you can look for a used or new car in Switzerland; however, the majority of them has offers from dealerships rather than a private seller. Buying a car from a dealer is the safest way, but you can also find a private offer; the market has it all. Check out the best-used car websites in Switzerland in this article.
Buying a car in Switzerland as a foreigner? Don’t miss out on this article.
Best websites to buy a used car in Switzerland
AutoScout24.ch is by far the largest marketplace for finding used or new cars in Switzerland. It’s one of the most popular car websites in Europe.
AutoScout24.ch operates in 19 European countries and has over 2 million vehicles to offer. In Switzerland, there are around 136,000 cards available for sale.
On the website, you can contact a private seller or dealer directly via message or phone call.
For expats and non-German speakers, AutoScout24.ch has different language options, including Italian and French, but no English.
Car4you.ch is also a large website to buy a vehicle in Switzerland, with over 166,000 cars on sale. Luckily, this platform has options in English. Some vehicles are even available for purchase online.
You can use their super detailed search and apply filters to find exactly what you need. Buyers can even book a test drive online. Nonetheless, most vehicles are sold via dealerships; head to AutoScout24.ch for private deals.
Comparis is a great site not only for finding a car in Switzerland but much more, including various insurances, houses & apartments, and even cable internet deals. All services are available in English.
With Comparis, you can compare offers independent and transparent car searches to help you make the best decision by displaying a detailed price history. They also provide all car-related services like car loans and maintenance.
Currently, about 148,402 cars are on sale.
Comparis’s search engine allows you to choose between several car types, including:
- Delivery van
- Estate car/station wagon
They also have a wide offer of helpful articles written in English.
Autolina.ch is a smaller car marketplace with offers from Swiss dealers. The website has an English version. Currently, about 66,053 vehicles are listed on Autolina.
Searching for a car on this site is simple, and you get an overview of the total vehicles in the market in a few clicks. You can apply several filters, e.g., car type, year of registration, etc.
The information you receive lets you compare various options and decide what suits you; a new or old car.
When you see a car you like, you can contact the dealer to seal the deal once you find your car of choice. Whether you wish to buy a new or old vehicle, get several quotes from reputable sellers, and the same for those who want to sell a car.
Ricardo is a Swiss eBay where you can find anything from cars and laptops to clothes. It doesn’t have an English version, but German, French and Italian. Currently, about 4,500 vehicles are on sale.
On Ricardo.ch, you will see the majority of car offers from private sellers. Always request a test drive when buying privately.
Car prices in Switzerland
Used cars are sold at pretty affordable prices in Switzerland. For example, budget brands like Seat, Renault, and VW go for around $20,000 for models from 2020.
Read this article to learn everything about car pricing in Switzerland and the cheapest models you can find.
Used cars from a car dealer
Some large dealers specialize only in selling used and new vehicles online. Autokunz.ch is the largest company; they have over 500 at the location. You can visit their showrooms and choose the car right there.
Car dealerships vs private deal
In Switzerland, you have a wide choice when it comes to purchasing a car. Both dealers and private individuals offer used vehicles.
Car dealerships in Switzerland
The majority of offers you will come across in Switzerland are from dealers. Buying a used car from a dealership is the safest path to take; you will get a guarantee, and some provide insurance.
Dealerships can be found anywhere in Switzerland, even in small villages. The main advantage of a dealership is that you can easily visit their location, see various cars and test drive them.
Dealers will often help with all the necessary paperwork you need to accomplish as a new car owner. They will register the car and even offer insurance.
Private sellers in Switzerland post their advertisements on car marketplaces too. If you buy a car directly from an individual, make sure that you:
- Use a sales contract or purchase agreement.
- Get the necessary documentation from the seller, including a vehicle report, report of the recent inspections, car registration details, etc.
- Pay money via bank transfer and not in cash.
Checklist for buying a car in Switzerland
1. Compare the prices
You should always shop around; all these websites might have different price ranges depending on the services included and the pricing of a particular dealership.
2. Control and inspections
Inspect a car before purchasing it, and check all related documents, like the vehicle registration document, the protocol of the last MOT, and a complete service book. You should also check whether the vehicle passed the previous inspections.
This can be done by running the Vehicle’s Identification Number (VIN) on available decoder portals to find details on mileage and accident history. If the vehicle is over ten years old, ensure that it passes a technical control test to know if it fulfills the Association des Services des Automobiles requirements.
Maybe the seller even has receipts for maintenance work or repairs.
3. A test drive
When buying a used car, you should do a test drive. For this, you need to have a driver’s license with you. Does the engine start properly and stops smoothly?
Test the air conditioning, radio, power mirrors, heated seats, and all other electrical functions. Do you notice any irregularities or noise while driving? Do brakes work properly?
4. Write and sign a contract
There must always be a written contract signed between the buyer and seller, whether it’s a dealership or a private purchase. It must include your and the seller’s information, the terms of sale, and vehicle information.
The warranty period for used cars in Switzerland is mostly two years, but it can be reduced or extended. A dealer will prepare all necessary paperwork, including the contract.
For used vehicles, a contract should state whether it’s accident-free or not.
5. Register the car
To operate a vehicle on Swiss roads, it must be registered first. A seller will hand you the original vehicle registration document with which you can register a car in your name at the Road Traffic Office. However, you must have a car insurance certificate to complete this step.
Be prepared to pay between 50 CHF and 300 CHF for car registration and include services, e.g., plates, inspections, and registration certificates.
Car export in Switzerland: things to keep in mind
When buying a new car in Switzerland for export, you have to be aware of several things, for example, high custom taxes.
Buying a car in a non-EU country – in Switzerland
When buying a car in a non-EU country, you must pay customs duty and import VAT when bringing it home. For a simple passenger car, it amounts to 10% of the purchase price.
If you buy a new car from a dealer in Switzerland, you don’t have to pay the local VAT, but you will pay import VAT or other similar taxes in your home country or in the country where you are moving it to.
Even if you purchase the vehicle privately, the import VAT is due in another EU country.
Export from Switzerland
For the transfer from Switzerland to another country, you must have an export or temporary plates.
Additionally, a driver must present the customs certificate when registering the car in a destination country. Whether buying a car in Switzerland is really worthwhile depends on the amount of taxes you must pay. So make your calculations wisely.
Since Switzerland isn’t in the EU/EEA, buyers pay additional taxes when exporting it. Buying a car in an EU state often makes more sense in terms of savings.
Read this guide on buying a car in Switzerland, so you won’t do any mistake.
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