Autochek is an auto-tech startup that was founded in June 2020 by Etop Ikpe. The startup helps user buy, sell and fix their cars. Ikpe founded Cars45 before leaving the company to start Autochek. The startup has a mobile app through which it renders its three cardinal services.
In this review of the app, I used the version 1.4.0 which already had more than 1,000 installs. In the next sections, I will take you through the features of the app, my experience while on it and an alternative to it.
Discouraging stories of fraudulent deals relating to car purchases abound on the internet with victims losing huge amounts of money. One of the red flags that people often see but fail to consider as important when they look for cars online is a low price that does not match the value of the car.
This creates a need for a safe and trusted avenue to make car purchases from an online source. Having the car vetted and marketed by a brand with a good reputation greatly reduces the chances of losing money due to fraudulent dealers.
Autochek app is one that provides a secure way of finding and buying cars, selling cars, and requesting for technicians online. All the services are split into features for users of the app.
Autochek’s major features allow you to buy, sell and fix cars. These three options can be accessed directly from the home page. To buy a car, you select from the list either by brand or price. I selected from the Audi brand and a 2010 Audi Q7 priced at N9.9 million popped up.
Other details about the car such as transmission, engine type and colour are also displayed with the vehicle. You can pay a token to take the car for a test drive while you make your decision about buying or not. Cars that are listed on the app are pre-vetted by technicians who check for faults and ascertain that the vehicle is fit for use by whoever purchases it.
You can list your car for sale as well. Before your car is shown to the public, you have to book for an inspection after which Autochek’s dealers bid for the car on the auction platform or through the general marketplace.
One of the key features of the app is the option to apply for a loan to purchase a car. If you select the option that prequalifies you for a loan, you will be asked to input details like your name, BVN, average monthly income and preferred downpayment value.
Once the form has been received and checked on Autochek’s end, a list of cars whose prices fall within the range of loan that can be offered will be sent to you afterwards. You can then accept the loan offer, complete the downpayment and take ownership of the car.
The last feature allows you to request for a technician to fix your car. You can either book an appointment if you know the fault or select the option that helps you to diagnose the car and identify the fault. You can book other services like tyres and wheel care, engine maintenance, cleaning and detailing on the app.
Alternatives to Autochek
Buying, selling or swapping cars is not limited to Autochek alone. One of the competitions for the startup in Nigeria is Cars45 as it also helps people to buy fairly-used cars that have been verified. Cheki was a competition until September 2020 when it was acquired by Autochek.
Both Autochek and Cars45 offer financing options for people who can’t afford cars at the moment but are willing to take a loan and payback in the future. Cars45 accepts instalments of up to 12 months at 2.5% monthly interest rate.
General user experience
The app’s features were easy to find and comprehensive in their offerings. I set up a profile in quick and easy steps and was able to peruse the products on the app in a simple process. Users who left reviews about the app on the Playstore majorly had good user experiences with the app and with Autochek’s service offline.
One of the reviewers, Tochi Njoku, said: “My experience with Autocheck inspection officer was one of a kind. The way they handled my vehicle I was really amazed. Thank you Autocheck for providing these wonderful services.”
Because the purchases can be hastened by the pictures of the cars that are provided, picture quality is a very important factor to consider. The pictures that are associated with the cars are taken from different angles and of good-enough quality.
In summary, Autochek has come a long way in the few months since it was launched. It has raised $3.4 million pre-seed funding from TLcom Capital and 4DX ventures. Golden Palm Investments, Lateral Capital, MSA Capital, and Kepple Africa Ventures also participated in the fundraising.
The app does a comprehensive job of bringing cars to those who want to buy them and, technicians to those who need their services.
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