View Full Version : Importing Cars

31-03-14, 03:02 PM
Anyone ever imported a car from the US?

I'm toying with the idea of importing a classic american car into the uk (Mustang or T-bird).

Two questions...

does it need an IVA (if so, what modifications will I need to make)?
what import duty will I be liable for (I saw somewhere that if the car's older than 30 years I'm only liable for 5% tax)?

Any ideas anyone?

31-03-14, 03:29 PM
The 5% tax scheme for cars over 30 years old is true and is covered under BTI 9705.

For carrs younger than this, I think the Duty is around 10%, with 20% VAT payable on top (yes, you have to pay VAT on the Duty!). The VAT is also payable on all the import costs, too (shipping, clearing, etc).

IVA will be needed (not sure about old classics/vintage) and usually involves lighting changes (side indicators, DRL deletion, amber indicators, beam angle, etc).

31-03-14, 03:33 PM
Good topic, I've been seriously thinking about the same thing myself (Mopar though).

So far the two names that keep coming up are Hill shipping in the UK and RaysClassics.com, who can help source, ship and deal with the shit (paperwork, taxes etc).

I'll be interested to see the feed back on here, but my understanding is that of that age and if it's more or less standard, there are no IVA issues and just 5% duty (although that's probably more certain if you have someone like the aforementioned shippers doing the paperwork). The advice I have had to date is to arrange for insurance to be in place on landing, then take it off and (hopefully) get an MOT using the chassis number. Once all your import paperwork and MOT are in place, you send it all in for registration.

What seems to be a grey area is once it's insured and MOT'd, but the registration is going through DVLA, if you are allowed to keep driving it on the street.

You may have to make a few mods for the MOT, like fitting amber rear indicators, but this is age dependent (65 I recall, but I stand to be corrected).


m eeley
31-03-14, 05:15 PM
Reading with interest as I have been thinking of this too... Mustang...

31-03-14, 06:25 PM
check out the Rods N Sods forum (Traders - For Sale / Services (http://www.rodsnsods.co.uk/forum/traders-sale-services/) ) - Ray (from Raysclassics) is on there (have messaged him a number of time re a early 50's Chevy 3100/Apache or Ford f100 truck) seem's like a very knowledgable bloke a plenty of great feed back from people who have dealt with him.

Also v8.jimmy on there too (plus a fair few others)

As regards to duty, the 5% depends on the nature of the car, it needs to be factory spec for that to apply, if any mods, like clipped etc, then it goes up to 20% + VAT i believe - again worth messaging Ray, or v8.jimmy.


Dutch Paul
31-03-14, 06:28 PM
Sorry for the blatant thread hijack, but anyone interested in this?......


I have owned it for about 4 years, but due to a change in the Dutch classic car road tax system it sadly has to go.
It is Dutch registered in my name, but currently sorned and is now stored in the UK. I will be applying for export papers in due course.
Good points.....
1985 Chevy Silverado Stepside 350ci v8 and TH350 transmission with a manual shift kit
Chassis and bodywork fairly good for a 31 year old truck - a few scratches but definitely no serious rust or damage. It was resprayed in about 2005
Chromework pretty good - apart from a couple of dents in the bumpers
Impco LPG system fitted - 80litre tank fitted under the passenger floor - so no loss of load space
Starts and runs perfectly on lpg
Airco - but the pump has been removed by the previous owner
Electric windows
Twin exhausts with single silencer each side - sounds almost like a cobra
Bench seat
It has gone through the last 3 MOTs without fault

Bad points.....
Around 15-18 mpg although running on LPG isn`t too bad on the wallet
Transmission fluid leak needs looking at
Needs a new bottom in the back - wood rotted - a piece of 3/4 marine ply would sort this
It used to run fine on petrol, but I ran it only on gas for a couple of years - the last time I ran on petrol the carb leaked - maybe a stuck float or dried out gasket? Probably needs a carb rebuild?
Speedo makes an irritating squeaky noise - maybe the speedo cable?
Oil pressure and temp gauges don`t work - I never bothered to look for the fault.
From memory it`s got about 20k miles on the clock - but no idea how many times it`s been round the clock??

I was going to put it on ebay next time I`m in the UK for a couple of weeks - but for the right offer I will let it go.

It aint no sports car, but definitely has lots of character and it`s a nice old truck to drive. With a little TLC it would be a great truck.

Anyone interested send me a PM and we can maybe organize a viewing next time I`m over for a weekend.

31-03-14, 06:38 PM
I heard there are more american muscle cars in Sweden than all the EU countries toghether.
Why not buy them there?

01-04-14, 08:40 AM
Delfim has a good point there.
I travel to Sweden a lot and yank tanks are quite prevalent there indeed.

01-04-14, 03:04 PM
I found this on my searches.

A 1964 mini..... 1964.... are we sure???? I always said Longbridge were ahead of the game, steering wheels with airbags in 1964, WOW !

1964 Austin Mini - Specialty Sales Classics (http://www.specialtysales.com/car.php?carnum=4546)

01-04-14, 07:38 PM
A 1964 Mini would have had external door hinges, 10" wheels just for a start. :(
Some people will believe anything in the USA.

Purple AK
01-04-14, 07:54 PM
A 1964 Mini would have had external door hinges, 10" wheels just for a start. :(
Some people will believe anything in the USA.
Come on Kev, This is America we're talking!! Anything that slightly resembles an original is given a title from that year! ;-) Just noticed the last 3 digits on my post count there :cool:

02-04-14, 07:45 AM
shipmycar.co.uk will collect a $26k car from Texas, bring it back to the uk, convert it for uk use, supply it with UK plates and 12 months tax for just under £3k.

Don't think it includes the import duty though.

Anyone ever used these guys?

m eeley
02-04-14, 07:51 AM
Anyone any experience of importing restoration projects? I'm guessing thats not as straight forward?

02-04-14, 06:14 PM
as long as the restoration project is standard, i believe it to be easier and cheaper, than a restomod etc. again, worth speaking to those people mentioned earlier on (ray & v8.jimmy etc) to get teh info direct from the horses mouth