Here Is What a Car Dealership in North Korea Looks Like

Visiting a car dealership while on vacation probably isn’t at the top of your list. After all, there are plenty of car dealerships in your town (or close to it) that you can visit on a regular basis. In addition to perusing the dealership showroom, you’ll be able to take advantage of the free coffee and there are plenty of salespeople that will be more than happy to chat with you and even show you around.

Unfortunately, this might not be the experience that you’ll get if you were to visit an auto dealership in North Korea. One YouTuber did just that during his tour of the country run by Kim Jong-un and, luckily for us, he recorded his experience.

The North Korean dealership looks a little staged

The three-minute video was shot by YouTuber Erick Tseng, who took a trip to North Korea back in 2015. Sure, it’s an old video, but we’re pretty sure that not much has changed in the dealership since. In either case, the dealership in question is Pyeonghwa Motors, which is the only dealership in town.

Tseng spends the entire video checking out some of the cars in the showroom, but also makes comments about the people standing around them. “There are a bunch of men and this woman over there, who I’m pretty sure are just actors,” Tseng said.

According to Car Scoops, it’s been reported that foreign tourists who visit the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea are taken on tightly-controlled, pre-arranged tours through certain parts of the city. It has also been claimed that many of the parts of these tours are staged in order to show a better side of North Korea, which is why Tseng made the comment.

As he continues to walk around the dealership in the video, Tseng also comments on the “employees” standing around and not doing anything. Which goes to show that they may have just been stand-ins as part of the tour. Although to be fair, many car salespeople stand around in dealership showrooms in the U.S., so it’s technically not that unusual.

Pyeonghwa Motors is a “genuine land of curiosity”

Pyeonghwa motors peace car, Pyongan Province, Pyongyang, North Korea.
Pyeonghwa motors peace car, Pyongan Province, Pyongyang, North Korea. | (Photo by Eric Lafforgue/Art In All Of Us/Corbis via Getty Images)

Pyeonghwa Motors is a brand that’s local to the North Korean market and you likely won’t find any of its cars anywhere else. Car Scoops reported that it is only one of two automaker brands that ever existed in the country and it stopped making cars back in 2012.

According to the Koryo Tours group, which guides tours through Pyongyang, Pyeonghwa Motors is a “genuine land of curiosity.” Judging by the stoic and look of the wandering “employees” in the video, we couldn’t agree more. The brand is reportedly responsible for about 20% of the cars driving around Pyongyang, but considering most of the residents can’t afford to buy a car, we’re not too surprised they stopped making them.

You can still visit this dealership

 Pyeonghwa motors car advertising billboard, Pyongan Province, Pyongyang, North Korea.
Pyeonghwa motors car advertising billboard, Pyongan Province, Pyongyang, North Korea. | (Photo by Eric Lafforgue/Art In All Of Us/Corbis via Getty Images)

In case you ever plan a trip to North Korea, or get invited on one, the Pyeonghwa Motors dealership looks like a pretty interesting stop. Fortunately, you can still take a tour of it, but note that the “staff are not actual guides,” notes Koryo Tours. By the looks of it, they’re definitely just there for decoration, just like the cars. Well, at least there’s a gift shop where you can buy a souvenir of your stoic experience.  

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