Importing cars from the usa

Importing cars from the usa

US cars, even from the 80's, are popular in Europe as classics and there is an established scene of car enthusiasts here who are dedicated to these models. What could be more obvious for a car enthusiast than to think about a self-import from the States?. Is it worth doing the whole thing on your own or is it better to leave it to the professionals in the business?

The question is whether you import these cars yourself or turn to an agency that specializes in importing US cars. The way over agencies is surely the faster and more comfortable way. Because these help private people to bring the US-Oldie safely to Germany and on the German roads.

What do agencies do?

An agency that specializes in the import of US cars not only ensures that there are no problems with the car at customs.

In fact, an agency in the USA is also looking for the dream car of its private client in Germany. Ultimately, the agencies also conduct the sales negotiations with the seller on behalf of their private client from Germany.

If there are defects that are only discovered in Germany, the agency is then also the contact for the German car fan of US cars. The way over the agencies sounds quite comfortable, but is also more expensive than the self-import.

But only at first sight, because there are a lot of things to consider when importing a US car by yourself. Money and time one must invest for it already.

Find a US car

First of all it is important to find the car of one's dreams on the US market. Thanks to various Internet portals, however, this is not a problem nowadays. Many fans of US cars from Germany save themselves the way over the large pond in such a way. The complex search at the individual car dealers from place – possibly from New York to Los Angeles.


If the dream car is found, the transportation from the USA to Europe or. To Germany must be organized. The advantage of buying a US car on the East Coast of the USA is that there are many ports here that allow the US car to be shipped in a container without having to organize transport overland to one of the ports.

However, the jungle of forms is annoying, which every fan of US cars has to go through if he wants to ship his dream car to Europe. Of course, this is also connected with costs. It is advisable to hire a professional vehicle logistician for this purpose.

In this case, the fan of a dream car bought in the USA does not even have to worry about the required container and certainly not about loading papers and customs at the port of unloading. A transport of the US car in a container by sea usually takes about 6 days.


In addition to the actual purchase of the dream car in the U.S., one must factor in a number of other costs. The sea transport and the insurance strike with approximately 1000 euro to the account.

For customs and taxes you have to plan an amount of about 600 euros. The import clearance costs about 500 euros again. And if you want to have your dream car delivered to your door, you'll have to pay another few hundred euros for it.

Import from non-EU countries profit

A private person who has bought his dream car in the USA and imports the car via a professional vehicle logistics company or even takes care of it himself – including the rental of a container, can since 1. January 2014 but benefit from the Europe-wide harmonization of the customs tariff number 9705.

This led to a significant reduction in the cost of importing classic cars from a non-EU country, such as the U.S.

Customs duties no longer apply to these cars since then. The import sales tax rate has also been reduced to 7 percent. But the condition for such reduced customs quota is the original condition of the car.

This means that no intrusive changes should have been made to the chassis, steering, braking system or engine. The US car should also have an age of at least 30 years.

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