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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all,

I am also looking to import a car.
I have found a site that looks good.
I am wondering if I import a car myself I'll need to add the following.

VAT @ 17.5%
Duty @5% - is this right. ?? also is it Duty on price plus vat or just price ??

Shipping.. about 600 odd dollars.

SVA costs.

Have I missed anything ? I don't want to budget for one amount and find I am 5 grand short or something...

thanks for your help.
Steve
 

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duty and Vat

Steve, by my understanding of this matter (having been a parts importer for rather a long time) is that both duty and Vat is calculated on the landed cost (UK) of what you buy. There are hundreds of different rates of duty that apply to goods, you can be safe applying 10% but it maybe 5 on a car I am not sure, so in essence, if you pay £1000 for a car and £500 to get it here the duty and Vat is calculated on £1500 not £1000. My advice to anyone buying overseas and parting with a sum of cash you cant afford to lose, is go there to touch and feel your purchase
before parting with your cash. If you can trust who you are dealing with, so much the better. Then again, if you spend 5k on the car, 2k on the visit to see it, £600 to get it here and so on, it fast becomes cheaper to buy one here. Good luck
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Are there copious amounts of rip off merchants out there then.?

I have spoken to a few people on this matter and have been recommended various people.

obviously you can never be 100% sure about what you are getting even if you go there and touch it, but are there any cases where it just doesn't turn up ?

thanks for your advice.

/Steve
 

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dont know

Steve, but this is the motor industry you are discussing. Would you buy a copy of some magazine (UK based) ,see a pretty picture, transmit your money unseen and expect it to arrive on your doorstep as if by magic ? If so, dont worry ! If you send money overseas you will spend more money in legal costs trying to recover it if it goes wrong than you will have spent in the first place. Many basic questions are to be asked ; how to trust the other side, who is responsible if the car is damaged between the garage and the port, will they even tell you !, how long will it hang around dock-side, and what might happen to it if it hangs around for too long. Did you know for example that if you insure the car while its on the boat floating on its way over here, you are only covered for a total loss
ie if the container falls off the deck or the boat sinks, not if the front wing gets stuffed in because the chap driving it out of the hold forgets to apply the brakes. If these barriers werent to be considered, we'd all be doing it wouldnt we. Or maybe we already are. There are hundreds of happy people who have done it, but I bet there are an equal number of horror stories. Will your friend who recommended the source(s) underwrite the whole deal when it goes wrong, or will he (or she) just say 'oh dear'
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I think that there will be more people doing this when they realise the savings that can be had.

I know we live in a bit of a suspicious world. perhaps some of these places are just fronts soaking up large sums of money from people like me. I was thinking about doing a test with a 300zx as I can afford to lose the money they are going to auction for.

I have seen a couple for a starting price of £100 quid, so that means that including shipping and all of the expenses you are looking at about a grand landed, if it doesn't land I'll have lost a couple of hundred quid..

Then if that goes ok I'll have a little play in that then get a real car from them.

Again there are a lot of questions in your post that I will have to ask the dealers regarding liability etc.. I have wondered the smae myself but if it turns out to be realistic then I'll have to do it. and report back on my experience.

Thanks Danoh any pointers for the rest of us. Thngs you'd have done differently?

cheers
Steve
 

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Well the only real thing I would have done differently would have been to go to Andy (Dirk) for advice from minute one as having him take care of customs and shipping makes the entire operation very much easier... And chances are he can probably source you a car anyways... If you locate your own car though, use him as your clearance agent :D

Other than that my experience was pretty good, I dont think I'd have done anything any other way. My car is a good test case for Rexis anyway, as it didnt cost a great deal by Skyline standards, infact I will soon be writing a "Skyline on a budget" Article for the main GTR pages. However, I am a little concerned that it may take some of the glamour out of the car when people realise that you could be driving a Skyline for the price of a crappy used Vectra... So I may not go ahead with it...

My best advice for anyone importing - Speak to Andy or Rob @ Kleer Freight!

Good luck Steve, hopefully it'll all pan out good for ya, I must admit I cant actually find many horror stories so I'm pretty sure its a safe way to buy cars these days...

Cheers,

Dan
 

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Have to add my own expiriences here - we went through www.bestjapancar.com and it was daunting parting with £5k or so having never seen the car in the flesh, but at the end of the day we decided to take the risk.

I would happily recomend them to anyone, and I am sure we will use them when we upgrade to a GTR.

we did also use someone who works with bestjapan for sorting out the SVA, customs etc, but having gone through it once would quite happily do all that myself next time.

there are good savings to be had - but at the expense of a little risk ;)

Simon
 

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Can add that Miguel @ New Era was extremely helpful and I would have no hesitation in trusting him having seen a car he supplied to a good friend.
 

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Who dares wins comes to mind.

The deal is
Car price
charge for transporting to japanese port and admin £300-500

depending on company and location of nearest port.

Freight average £600 (£850 for bus 4x4)

this end you have :-
10% duty then add all together and whack in 17.5%VAT
Plus of coures £125 for agents fees and port chargers.
Then transport from port to home.

That raps it up. Then if the car is newer than 10 yrs old you have
Sva conversion,SVA test, MOT and registration.
They mostly all need a Battery and tyres and a little paint.

and after all that it is still worth it !!!!!!

But to do this for a profrit actualy ties you wonga up for a long time
Average 12 weeks from order to delivery then say a month to sort out SVA, MOT and registering.

This is from my experience only others may find it different.
I have imported say 15 cars for myself and friends and almost all have been as above.


I better tell you my worst experience though. I did buy a lovley little Nissan Figaro. from a reliable source.
The car turned out to be a stolen and recovered car in Japan.
Even though it was sold to me legaly it was still on the Interpol register of stolen cars.

The company I bought the car from didn't know that it was once a stole car.
I was looked at as a car thief at the local nick.

It took me 9 months to get it sorted out. I had a restriction notice put on it by the police and wasn't allowed to move it "while investigations were going on"
DVLA would not register it until I had a letter from the police. The police would not write a letter until they had one from Interpol. Interpol are uncontactible.

To say it took a bit of sorting out is an understatment.


Hope this helps.


Rick
 

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OK then.

Steve, dont know why you didnt ask me in the first place you tit:D

Call me on 01795 581366 ( KF ) and I will tell you what you need to know. We have bought cars from Japan for the past 6 years and I am sure I can do you a favour and grab a nice one for you without profit. Happy to help you.

If you are in a position to buy one, I am off to Hong Kong next week to watch our GB touring cars in a race in Macau and then onto Tokyo for some business and a few giggles, I am going to the USS auction in Tokyo and could easily pick something up for you with my very own eyes whilst I am there though I fully trust and respect the opinion of our long term car export agents and could easily do it over the phone for you:)

If you want some help, just call me, I can tell you exactly whats involved without ifs or buts or maybes OK :)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks Andy,

I didn't want to bother you because as per our last chat I am not ready to roll yet.

Have been keeping tabs on what is going on over there at the mo and it is looking good.

I will definately come and see you before I go for it. and I would like to use you for the deal, but until I have the money in my pocket I don't want you to waste time on a favour that I may not have the offer of if I mess you about.

I have found out a lot from this thread.

will speak to you soon.
Cheers
Steve
 

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I must say the savings arent that great compared to a few years ago. For instance, my COST price on an Evo V is very similar to the price you see them going for on Autotrader.....which just goes to prove that there is a big market in Grade 1 and 0 cars over here. Ideally you should be looking at grade 4 cars or better, ive only once bought a 3.5 and it just wasnt nice......

Also worth considering is that even if an auction starts at £100 that doesnt mean if no-one else bids you get it for £100. There is usually a reserve which isnt shown. Youi'll notice some cars start at £0 !!

A 1991 300ZX will set you back about 250000 yen at the moment, going on recent auctions of grade 4 stock.

BTW im happy to give you help on who i use over here for customs clearance/ port arrangements if you will be using Southampton like i do.

Chris
 

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almost forgot - the insurance DOESNT cover the car for loading/unloading as its a 'grey area'. I had a very low front splitter wiped out as a car was unloaded at Southampton - did nearly £700 worth of damage, but the shippers said it was the unloading people and vice versa.......

Chris
 

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thank god for that

there I was thinking it was all roses. It must be even worse when the DVLA change the SVA rules in between when its paid for and when it arrives !
Call me a pessimist
 

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ive only once bought a 3.5 and it just wasnt nice......
My car was only a grade 3.5 and its not bad :( I hear that different auction houses use different grading systems so that a 3.5 in one place, may well be a 4 in another... My car has cosmetic scabs but runs and drives fine... Cars are a risk wherever they come from in my opinion :)
 
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