Buy

Importing my 360 from the US to the UK

Discussion in '360/430' started by cheetah360, Feb 16, 2004.

  1. cheetah360

    cheetah360 Rookie

    Feb 16, 2004
    32
    I am relocating to London within a few weeks, and would like to bring my 2001 Modena with me, although it's LHS driving.
    I spoke to a number of people at Ferrari UK, but no one was able to tell me precisely what I need to do. Apparently, the issues around exhaust / catalytic converter are probably OK, as the US is stricter than the UK. My 360 is a US export model, not a modified European model.
    More importantly, I am under the impression that I might have to pay some VAT tax. This seems wrong sincve I already paid a 8.25% sales tax in the US.

    Does anyone know *precisely* what to do to get this done in order to avoid such expenses. Are there any companies that specialize in doing the entire process?

    Thanks
     
  2. To remove this ad click here.

  3. SrfCity

    SrfCity F1 Veteran

    Nov 1, 2003
    9,842
    Orange County, CA
    Not too sure how that works but, I'd bet you'd be better off selling it here first then buying one over there a lot cheaper. My guess is you'd wind up with essentially the same thing and another $30 - 40K in your pocket......imo of course.
     
  4. davem

    davem F1 Veteran
    Silver Subscribed

    Jan 21, 2002
    6,624
    Stepford, Connecticut
    Full Name:
    dave m
    If you are going to be in England a while it would be much cheaper i suspect to sell yours here. They are much cheaper across the pond, plus you will have right hand drive.
     
  5. mw575

    mw575 F1 Rookie

    May 30, 2001
    2,924
    Lake Oswego,Or
    Full Name:
    Martin J Weiner,M.D.
  6. tvrfreak

    tvrfreak F1 Rookie
    BANNED

    Mar 31, 2003
    3,879
    Arkansas
    Full Name:
    F K
    If you are importing it into England permanently, then you would need to pay an assessed duty, whether you have paid the US sales tax or not. Not much point in doing this as a LHD car would be difficult to sell over there, and they generally sell for less anyways. You would be taking a hit on the duty and on the resale.

    If you are importing it into England temporarily, then there is no duty. You can import it for 6 months and get a further 6 month extension without any problems. At that point, you can drive it to another country and re-import it into England to begin the cycle again, although there might be a stipulated period for which you have to keep it out of the country.

    You will need to keep the US registration and insurance valid. And make sure the insurance covers you in England/Europe. You can always purchase additional insurance cover in England itself but If you do, shop around. The rates vary wildly, and without rhyme or reason.
    There are a lot of automated car-parks where you will have some difficulty unless you have a passenger in the car. No biggie in the overall scheme of things.

    Contact a shipping broker in England and they will handle it all for you. And welcome to the world of GATSO (speed camera) immunity!
     
  7. To remove this ad click here.

  8. cheetah360

    cheetah360 Rookie

    Feb 16, 2004
    32
    Interesting. I do like the option you mention of bringing the car on a temp basis for 6 months then extend. I actually am a dual citizen US-France, so I could easily drive the car to France (and leave it at my secondary residence) until I can bring it back to the UK. I wonder how many times I can play that game though? Any insights? I think I'll be in the UK for 3-5y, then back to the States, so I'm not too keen on getting a RHD permanently.
    Also, a couple of posts earluer mentioned I could save 30-40k by selling my car in the US and buy one locally. But given the exchange rate of Sterling/USD of 1.90, I suspect that the cost would actually be way against me. How much is a new 2004 360 in the UK nowadays?
     
  9. ross

    ross Three Time F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed Owner

    Mar 25, 2002
    33,157
    houston/geneva
    Full Name:
    Ross
    try this site.

    http://www.dvla.gov.uk/vehicles/vehicles.htm

    i imported my car from italy. admittedly this was made easier because its an intrnal ec move, but the whole process was really not that difficult. more of a paper chase than anything else. no modifications necessary.

    as to the wisdom of it, that depends on what you think your car is worth where you are; what you would want to replace it with here; whether you intend to keep it for life or sell it in the uk/europe.

    currently you can get a 360 coupe on the used market for as low as £75k or about $143k. go to the london sunday times to see what the rest of the market is like.
    3 years ago it was cheapest to buy ferraris on the continent and import them here, so the population of lhd cars exploded. then over the last year it became cheapest to buy lhd cars here in the uk because the re-sale mkt for them was lower. however, now with the dollar so low vs the euro and pound, i believe it would probably make sense to bring your car with you and import it. insurance is a little higher for lhd but not bad. and then of course you have to be automotively ambidextrous - ie you have to be able to drive a lhd car on rhd roads without forgetting where you are, which is not the easiest thing if you are not used to it.

    do your research and calculations.
     
  10. tvrfreak

    tvrfreak F1 Rookie
    BANNED

    Mar 31, 2003
    3,879
    Arkansas
    Full Name:
    F K
    There is no limit to how many times you can do it. You are essentially making the case that you are visiting the country with your foreign car. No limits on how mnay times you can visit the country using each mode of transport.

    The exchange rate has made buying a f_car there prohibitively expensive if you need to convert US dollars to do so. Don't forget the transaction costs...unless the seller takes US-dollar wires, you might pay quite a bit just to convert your funds, in addiition to the unfavourable exchange rate.
     
  11. peajay

    peajay Formula Junior

    Apr 17, 2002
    454
    near Paris, France
    Full Name:
    Paul
    I would be very surprised if you will find the same car less expensive in the UK, rule of thumb for most things used to be what you pay in dollars will cost you pounds. I say that after years of experience, but the currently weak dollar may have shifted that equation a little, but may have made it even more expensive compared to the USA. Take a look on line at UK prices to help you decide.
     
  12. To remove this ad click here.

  13. cheetah360

    cheetah360 Rookie

    Feb 16, 2004
    32
    Thanks. Interesting comment about being ambidextreous, which I actually am.
    Can anyone recommend an importer that can handle all the paperwork, including shipping the car? I'm pretty sure I want to keep this car for life, so I'll handle the LHD (besides, I plan to do a lot of driving in france, germany and Italy).
    Also, is there a VAT tax to pay on the import?
     
  14. ross

    ross Three Time F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed Owner

    Mar 25, 2002
    33,157
    houston/geneva
    Full Name:
    Ross
    the vat tax issue i am not certain about, but i suspect that if you bring it over along with all you other stuff, it just gets considered as part of 'household goods', and may only have to pay a small import tax. as far as somebody doing the importation - first ask the company that is moving your furniture because they are most likely to either do the car as well or have an agreement with a company that does; and then you have it all under one invoice which makes it convenient.
     
  15. F308 MAN

    F308 MAN F1 Rookie

    Jan 19, 2004
    2,907
    Isle of Man
    Full Name:
    Dave S
  16. Victory

    Victory Formula Junior

    Jan 28, 2004
    410
    I think you have to pay the VAT of 18%. You can't escape that. So it's not worth your while.
     
  17. tvrfreak

    tvrfreak F1 Rookie
    BANNED

    Mar 31, 2003
    3,879
    Arkansas
    Full Name:
    F K
  18. dan360

    dan360 F1 Rookie

    Feb 18, 2003
    2,669
    Boston
    I imported a car back in to the UK from Japan (a Porsche) back in 1998. Unless the law has changed (which it might well have) ->

    All that was said before about temp stuff is true. You can import it temporarily but wouldn't be able to sell it.

    If the Car is made outside the EU then you have to pay tax.

    But if the car is made inside the EU (since its an F-car here you're OK), then if you've owned the car for X time and done X miles then there is no tax to pay on the re-import to the EU/UK. I seem to recall 6000 miles and either 6 or 12 months (I just know that I qualified). This will then allow a full import with a limited title - as long as you keep the car for a further X time (either 12 or 24 months - can't remember this detail either). Once X time has passed you can sell the car if you like. Before it passes, if you sell you THEN have to pay the VAT.

    You will need to get a special MOT test done called the SVLA (I think) this requires a visit to some bizzare location in West London to sit through a super test. It think it does require an MPH speedo, orange indicators & fog lights etc, so a US car may/will not pass this test as is.

    Hope this helps - consult the DVLA (the UK's DMV equivalent) for more details :-http://www.dvla.gov.uk/
     
  19. Steve Darrah

    Steve Darrah Rookie

    Nov 5, 2003
    35
    Midlothian, Virginia
    Full Name:
    Stephen C. Darrah
    Don't know how relevant this may be, but I imported a 1992 NSX into the UK from the US in 1998. I had to have fog lights installed and wired for the car and there was an issue ,if I remember correctly, about the winshield glass. The total cost was arond $2800.00 for everything.I had a major US mover make the shipment and everything was fine. The car was "impounded" by the UK until I verified that all the required work was done. I did not have to pay any VAT tax or other taxes to import the car, although this may have been due to it's age.
    One important consideration about driving a left hand drive car in the UK is that it is very difficult to pass when driving on the left hand side of the road-you have to pull out much further than normal to see. I had several "near misses" which led to the NSX spending more time in the garage than on the road.If you take that SWEET 360 over there, be careful.
    Several other driving points. Roads in small villages and towns are extremely narrow-lots of opportunities to make outside mirror contact.Also, as you probably are aware,gas is very expensive.In dollar terms,in 1998,it would cost me ~$200.00 to fill up my Range Rover, and that was when the $/BPS rate was 1.55/pound.It is around 30% more today at the old price/liter.
    I would recommend that you try to get your company to foot the bill for as many costs as you can if you ship the car over.You will probably want to pick up a right hand drive "beater" if you take the 360. This will also have a cost impact-insurance,taxes etc.
    Good luck!!!
     

Share This Page