Did anyone import a used car from EU?


======= Date Modified 08 08 2009 15:08:07 =======
========== This thread had been moved ==========
============= Edited by a Moderator =============
Hi, I'm thinking to bring my car in UK from EU. It is an Opel Corsa 1.4. I know that I have to register it and make technical adjustments for UK specifications. How much will it cost?


I've a imported a new car from the EU but this was ordered as a RH drive from the manufacturers. You mention technical adjustments, you don't find second hand RH drive cars in the EU obviously because everyone else drives LH drive cars.

All cars in the EU are built to the same technical specification (EU law), the only variation is the UK and Ireland markets where the cars are RH drive. Are you intending to import a LH drive car?


If it possible for you to keep your registration in your home (EU) country it is easier to just leave it. There is no legal need to register your car in the UK and it saves you bringing it through the MOT. It doesn't need many technical adjustments (sticker from km to miles on the speed thingy) but the insurance is quite expensive (especially if you want to take it back onto the mainland for a eg holiday). The only thing you have to do is, to put a beam bender sticker on your right front light in order not to irritate anyone; however, i am driving my car here for 2 years and i never got around to do it and nobody ever checks.


Yes, oz is right. You don't need any changes apart from the front light. I just kept my homecountry registration and driving around LH here in a RH country with no problems at all.


P.S.: Blue, I don't know if you have noticed but you cannot import a car from EU to UK because UK BELONGS TO EU, if you know what I mean. You are not leaving the European Union behind, you are just moving within the EU.


Yes it’s a LH drive car.
I have no fog light so I should make it installed.
The headlamps and side repeater indicators should be adjusted.
The speedometer should be fitted to miles per hour.

Apollo, in fact I don’t need to import it inside the EU but I should register the car in the UK which is not so different from the tax free importation. And the registration is compulsory after 6 months.


no it's not compulsory. You don't need to register your car here and likewise you don't need to register with the police etc. if you are an EU citizen. Furthermore, you don't need to change your speedometer to miles per hour - that little bit of calculation you can do yourself.

But if you want to do all that stuff and waste your own time--have fun..


On a different note, speed and parking tickets are now being sent to all over Europe (since 1st of January), i.e. if you park in the wrong place and receive a ticket you will have to pay it from now on even if you have a car with a foreign (EU) number plate.

Avatar for XJR

Apollo, that is not the case! If you import a car you have to register it through the DVLA which involves showing lots of documents and paying some fees.

This is not optional - it has to be done by law.

You will also have to prove that any necessary changes such as fitting a rear fog light and converting the headlights has been completed. 'Beam bender' stickers are not acceptable - it must be a
permanent conversion. It is very dangerous to leave the lights unchanged, it can dazzle oncoming drivers and cause

On top of all this there is the cost of physically transporting the car from one country to another.

Blue, in my opinion it is not worth importing a Opel Corsa into the UK. Assuming you spend most of the year in the UK the most cost-effective thing to do would be to sell the car in its original country and then buy a Vauxhall Corsa (the same car) in the UK.


XJR, you are right.
Apollo, these informations are from www.dvla.gov.uk and they should be true.
However wherever in the EU you must register the car after 6 months.


what are you guys going on about "importing" all the time. My car is registered in the Netherlands. I changed the lights over there. Then I drove onto the ferry and that was it. No registration, and nothing else. My car is still registered in NL and I know 100% for sure, that I do not need to register it in the UK!


if my car is registered in another EU country and I drive to UK, then there is no registration necessary. I'm just driving a car registered in a different EU country, and this is legal. I checked with my local government and they assured me this. The only problem is of course the lights - but I changed those.

We are not talking about "importing" a car from the US to UK, for instance. What we are doing is like driving from France to Germany, no registration necessary - at all.


If you are moving to a different Community Member State, you must register your vehicle in that country as soon as possible after arrival and, at any rate, within six months of moving...

It is from European Commision portal


Related to the topic:

Is changing your driving licence required? I once lost my driving dutch driving licence and that had a lot of trouble getting a new one as I had (previously)not changed it into a german one. Dutch authorities did not want to give a new one and German authorities did not know me.

I pressume cars and driving licences are OK in a foreign country until something goes wrong and you are dealing with DVLA and alike.


This is really weired. I have my German car with a German number palte and German insurance in the UK, I checked with the police, the DVLA, and the embassy and everybody said: Don't worry as long as it is road legal in the country of registration you can do whatever you like. The only thing is that you have to have an address in the country it is registered so they can send you your tickets. That's it and a sticker (beam bender) is complely legal and you can even get an MOT with only the sticker. And to be honest, nobody is ever going to check you anyway if you are not getting a ticket every week how will tehy know you have the car here. Furtehrmore there is no need to register yourself nor the car anywhere as the UK has no law which forces you to register.
To Rick:
The replacemnt of your driving liscence should work over the embassy.