Here are my 2 cents on buying a new car:
1- Always always view it in day light.
2- always check all window, windscreen and back screen glasses for original (Toyota) stamps.
3- always stand at an angle to see the body curves and lines are all straight and "crisp"
4- always get on your knees to take a deep look under the body and wheel arches for tell tale signs of repairs i.e. bulges, or color sprayed on glass,wiring or tyres etc
5- check the engine bay area, especially for any fiddling with wring
6- check the radiator and A/C condenser for any damaged fins or repairs (peep through the grille or front bumper)
7- Check the tread of all 4 Tyres for any uneven wear
8- always take at least 20-25 minute test drive and take full u turns to check for problem with the drive shaft or "Godda". this will be
the toughest part as most sellers wont be comfortable with it. If i like a car, what i do is pay the seller like 20K as token money just to give the seller the comfort that I am not a tyre kicker. A long test drive will also highlight heating up issues etc.
9- In case of Prius the test drive will also help you measure the health of the batteries, if they are in good shape, you should average between 20-25 km/l
10- check all electrics such as engine check lights, abs check lights, a/c, head lights, cruise control, each power window, central locking, touch screen reverse camera, wipers (a repairing them can cost you dearly)
11- if applicable make sure all annual token taxes are paid.
12- always check import and custom docs,(especially bill of entry/ bill of laden) as a precaution get a copy of the docs, put your initial on each page and give it to the seller, so that in case any of the papers in missing you can get back to seller.
13- Never trust the auction sheet, 90% of them are fake!
All the car dealers are !!#!#*&$$^^$&@^, so I cant recommend any one- I would suggest don't haste go around and try to find a neat clean car. Depending on trim (s -s touring- g or g-touring, T4 etc.) and color, a 07 Prius should cost between 16-18.50.
Avoid buying a simple S spec Prius (or any basic spec imported car) as there is a great probability that it would have been used as taxi or rent a car in Japan due. If you can afford the extra buck, choose pearl white or pearl black (they cost 100 K extra) as they are most likely used as private cars.
Final advise, If you can wait, there are numerous importers who offer you to choose a car online from an auction house they will bid for you and import it for you. They will charge between 50K and 100K and take care of every thing from getting the car on ship and getting clearance at the customs.
Hope it helps.
Please remember me in your prayers