By on April 13, 2012

Welcome to New Or Used Without Borders, where the international team of TTAC answers your intercontinental car shopping questions.

Robstar asks:

My wife & I are about to have our first child in December.  We visit Brazil (SJC, SP) typically twice per year to see my wife’s relatives. Usually each trip lasts about a month (I’m only there the last week or two).  My wife has talked to me about possibly buying a car in Brazil because of our frequent travel there and our need to get around with an infant/toddler.  During past visits, I drove or we took the bus together.  Now that she’ll be taking an infant with her, she wants to be able to drive herself when I’m not there.  We are also worried about safety using public transportation — A single mother & a baby/infant who may speak English at an inopportune time may appear to be an easy target for criminals.  In any case, our current transportation options won’t work because they are not automatic & not as safe in an accident as we’d like.

Our current options are:

1974 (IIRC) VW Beetle with a 4 speed, 1.5L, 40’ish hp.  — Not in any way safe enough for the baby.

2004? 2005? VW Polo, 5-speed, 1.8L.  Not sure on HP but I’d guess it’s 90’ish ? 100?  — 5 speed.

We are trying to decide if we want to buy new, or have my father-in-law help us look for something used.  I’ve asked my wife about renting, but it’s not safe to leave an unsecured car outside overnight (and my in laws don’t have a gate secured spot in their house for a third car).  I don’t think my brother-in-law would be opposed to an upgrade of his Beetle, so that is what we’ll most likely do.

 Here are our requirements in order of need … (Listed in the response.)

Marcelo answers from Brazil: (Read More…)

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