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What kind of car do you recommend bringing to post, given the terrain, availability of parts, burglary/carjacking risks, etc.? What kind of car do you advise not to bring?

Definitely a 4x4 vehicle if you plan to travel around the country. Bring an extra set of tires too. You want high clearance. The roads are not well maintained. - Jul 21, 2017
Toyota Prados are the most common car and helpful if you plan on doing some exploring. In town, there are lots of small cars (Corollas, Versa, etc) During transition season, there are often lots of cars for sale, otherwise people import from Japan. Malawi is a right hand drive country. - Oct 16, 2016
The Toyota Prado Landcrusier is everywhere and for good reason as it's kind of a dependable tank of a vehicle and good on the potholed roads. Left hand drive. - Aug 2, 2015
Import a used vehicle from Japan--I recommend the Prado as parts and maintenance are easy and it will get you around South Luangwa too. Driving is dangerous here and a good car will also protect you from accidents. - Sep 17, 2013
I think that it's nice to have a big SUV (we have a Landrover) for anytime you travel out of the city---and even if you go into certain areas within Lilongwe. We also have a small sedan to take back and forth to work since fuel is so expensive. But it seems pretty important to have an SUV. The roads are severely potholed and the weather is really hard on your car, so I wouldn't recommend a nice car. The traffic is also a bit crazy. Toyota is the preferred brand because there are many here that parts are easy to come by. We've had to order our Landrover parts from the States. Not as easy. It's also right-hand drive, so we bought our cars here. Some still drive American-style cars here, but with all of the bicycles and pedestrians and even carts drawn by donkeys in the roads, I prefer to be in the middle of the road for better visibility. - Sep 26, 2012
4WD, needs to be able to handle really bad roads, right-hand drive. We drove a Toyota Hilux Surf (4Runner equivalent) and found it to work very well. - Sep 17, 2009
A four wheel drive is good for outside Lilongwe. Car hires are very expensive. In general, the roads -- unless you get off the beaten path -- are quite good, but a four-wheel drive is recommended. - Jul 27, 2009