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American 25 Year Car Import Rule

They kept coming back because Mercedes offered power with German specs and features that were not available from Mercedes in the US market. Unlike today, there was no import ban on a new Euro-Benz. I mean, the Defender and Mini Cooper come with modern safety technology that has made them more than just rideable. But no, according to this rule, it would be much better to conduct a “classic” 25-year-old import instead, which may not have this technology. The grey market was largely forgotten until the late `90s, but a booming economy and a two-year waiting list for the Ferrari 360 and 550 created a pool of American buyers willing to pay to federalize cars purchased in Europe. As a result, the number of “grey market” vehicles was significantly reduced, as expected: in 1995, only 300 such cars arrived in the United States, compared to 69,000 in 1985. But it also prevented collectors and car enthusiasts in the U.S. from getting their hands on many coveted classic cars — and so the law was changed again in 1998 to allow the importation of non-compliant vehicles older than 25 years. Vehicles manufactured to these standards carry a certification label by the original manufacturer near the driver`s door. If you are purchasing a vehicle abroad certified to U.S. standards, you can expedite your importation by ensuring that the purchase contract establishes this fact and by presenting the contract to CBP at the time of importation. As recently as 2015, Mercedes and BMW saw grey market imports question their interests and profits.

They pressured U.S. traders and local authorities to curb gray market imports. “We nipped him in the bud,” Steve Cannon, then CEO of Mercedes Benz USA, told Reuters. For protection against the importation of dangerous pests, the United States has the Department of Agriculture require that the chassis of imported cars be free of foreign soil. Have your car steamed or thoroughly cleaned before shipping. In addition to being cool cars, these models – and a number of others – have something in common: they won`t be eligible for import until this year. That`s thanks to a legal clause known as the 25-year rule, which states that certain makes and models of cars that were not previously certified for import or use in America can now be imported as antiques. They are no longer subject to the regulations that previously prevented them from entering the country. If the vehicle was not originally manufactured as a racing car, it can only be imported temporarily under box 7 of the HS-7 declaration form.

A letter of approval from NHTSA is required to import a vehicle on this basis. The NHTSA grants authorization in annual instalments for up to 3 years if tax is not paid on the vehicle, or up to 5 years if tax is paid. If the vehicle was originally designed for use on the road, it should be in full race configuration at the time of importation and it should lack the equipment and functions necessary for use on the road. When the MG F first rolled off the assembly line in 1995, it was the first “real” MG sports car built since 1980 (and only the third car produced by the Rover Group after its acquisition by BMW). The small, fast roadster has had a seven-year production period, but it`s not until 2020 that the first models will be legally available to U.S. buyers. Vehicles must be certified to U.S. federal emission standards by their manufacturers in order to be sold in the United States.

Vehicles that do not meet these requirements are considered non-compliant. A currently certified ICI, a list of which is available from the EPO, must import non-compliant vehicles for you. The only ICIs authorized by the EPA are located in the United States. It is therefore recommended to contact an ICI to discuss the cost of modifications and testing before deciding to import a non-compliant vehicle. ICI is responsible for ensuring that your car meets all U.S. emissions requirements. (Effective July 1, 1998, the EPA will no longer have a one-time exemption for vehicles five model years or older.) Note that the EPA denies access to certain manufacturers, models, and model years if an ICI is not certified or does not want to take responsibility for the vehicles in question. Before it can be legally imported into the United States, a vehicle that was not originally manufactured to comply with all applicable FMVSS and/or that has not been certified by its original manufacturer must first be eligible for importation by NHTSA.

The agency determined that the Canadian certified passenger cars were built on or after 1. September 1989, are eligible for importation, provided that these vehicles are equipped with automatic restraint systems that meet the requirements of FMVSS No. 208, “Protection against shocks of the occupants”. When a vehicle manufactured on or after that date does not have automatic restrictions, it has been determined to be eligible for importation. Without this finding, the vehicle cannot be legally imported into the United States. Note: Imports from Afghanistan (Taliban), Cuba, Iran, Iraq, Libya, North Korea, Sudan, Serbia/Montenegro/Kosovo or Yugoslavia in which the governments of these countries are involved are generally prohibited in accordance with the regulations of the Office of Foreign Assets Control of the Ministry of Finance. Before attempting to carry out such an import, information about the prohibitions and licensing policy should be obtained by contacting the following address: Fortunately, there is a huge industry built around the importation of gray market cars into the United States – the last of them were built in the field of modern safety standards and can easily be treated as a normal car. But in the current state of the law, until the car you want is 25 years old, you can`t legally import it into the United States for road use. If you bought a grey market Mercedes-Benz, the car you got had the same logo and was often mostly the same model sold by Mercedes-Benz in North America.

However, the grey market Mercedes-Benz 500 SEL you owned was never allowed to be imported or sold by Mercedes-Benz. In fact, they created this rule to protect the interests of automakers, and they went so far as to break some beauties along the way. They demolished everything from a classic Land Rover Defender to a Mini Cooper with fake news and made sure the videos are shared with the world to serve as a lesson on what happens when you try to bring a car into the country when it`s not allowed.