Majority of the countries across the globe use the left-hand driving system. Despite this, there is still a considerable population that incorporate the right-hand driving system on the road. One of these nations is Japan. So, if you plan to import a used car from Japan, then you should expect to receive a right-hand-drive vehicle.
Of course, if it is legal in your country to drive a right hand drive car, then you are free to do so. However, before you do that, make sure you watch the video below to discover the pros and cons:
Now, if you don’t want to get confused, you can always convert your right hand drive vehicle into a left hand drive system. We understand that the phrase ‘right hand drive’ has a negative connotation. After all, there are plenty of old wives’ tales depicting botched conversion jobs. In reality, for quality right-hand-drive conversions must be performed according to standards.
If you want to know what goes on behind these right hand drive conversions, keep reading this post. We will share everything you need to know about the job.
How Much Does it Cost to Convert a Car from Right Hand Drive to Left Hand Drive?
The price of right hand drive conversions usually depends on the make and model of the vehicle. If it is a common car, the service and parts will be relatively affordable. Of course, if you need the service for a rare or a highly desirable model, the cost can be higher. You can expect right-hand drive conversions to cost around $1,600 to $2,150.
How to Convert a Vehicle from Right- to Left-Hand Drive
Remember that a right-hand drive conversion is not a simple mechanical project. Watch the video below to get an idea:
So, you should only let professionals complete the work for you, especially if you are importing a vehicle from a used Japan car auction. Typically, conversions include the following processes:
- Re-positioning the steering wheel
- Re-positioning the dashboard
- Exchanging the rack and pinion
- Replacing the shift know
- Re-positioning the side mirror and adjusting its angle
What are the Steps in Converting a Right Hand Drive Vehicle?
Indeed, some of the processes we mentioned can be done by DIY mechanics. That said, the conversion process is generally not an easy one. If you want to know why that is true, check out the steps below:
- The first step is to dismantle the entire dashboard, including everything below it. The dashboard has to be re-positioned, but the harness can simply be inverted.
- Now, the mechanic has to use an LHD steering rack assembly as a replacement for the existing one. There is a possibility of damaging the airbags during this process, but professionals already know that they have to be cautious.
- The third step is to re position the pedal assembly. For manual cars, the mechanic has to dismantle the mounts of all three pedals, then reinstall them.
- After completing the previous step, the mechanic has to take the brake master cylinder, then re position and realign it. Making the smallest mistake in this procedure can be dangerous. So, it’s crucial that a trained professional perform it.
- Now, the mechanic will inspect the firewall and re position the accessories on it, including the blower motor, AC ducts, cables, and wires.
- Of course, adjusting the doors should not be forgotten. If the controls are on the door instead of the car’s middle section, it should be removed and installed to the appropriate position.
- Finally, the wiper mechanism and motor will be removed and replaced.
As you can see, the process involved in converting a right-hand drive vehicle is complicated. So, if you plan to import a used car from Japan, make sure you’re ready to hire a mechanic to perform the conversion for you.