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Thread: Importing a car - WOF

  1. #1
    Ben123456789 is offline Junior Member
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    Default Importing a car - WOF

    I'm planning to move to NZ with my girlfriend, probably next year. I'd like to take my car with me, because I'm (a) fairly attached to it and (b) the one's I've seen advertised in NZ are worth considerably more than I could sell mine for here in the UK.

    I normally do all the work required for the WOF myself, so my plan would be to do what I can before shipping it. But from experience with MOT's in the UK I know there is often stuff that I miss that gets picked up at the test station!

    So my question is: at what point is the WOF carried out? I.e. can I pick the car up from the port on a trailer, take it to the WOF testing station, and if they ask me for silly money to do the repairs, tow it away and do the repairs myself?

    Also, what do they check for during the MAFF inspection at the port, apart from cleanliness? Do they insist that any repairs are carried out before the car leaves the port (apart from steam cleaning)?

  2. #2
    Taffy's Avatar
    Taffy is offline He who shall be ignored
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    Hi, when you import a car you get it cleared through customs and MAF (MAF will want to check nothing came in with the car!). It's not as simple as just getting a WOF, the car must undergo a full compliance check before it can be registered for use on NZ roads. Only certain testing stations can perform compliance testing. This is a fairly strict test to ensure the car is roadworthy. You also need to check that your make and model is available in NZ, as if that model has never entered the country, they will need to crash test it! A friend had this with an M5 BMW he imported, the car couldn't be passed as that specific model was never released in NZ, so had to be scrapped - a total waste of money.

    In general, if your car isn't unique or really special, importing it can work out way more expensive than selling and buying a replacement in NZ. When you consider shipping alone will cost around 2000 quid, then compliance costs about $350, plus any work required to be carried out, then you need to register the car, which is another $200ish. From experience, getting a car through compliance on average costs about $1000, but that's based on the Japanese import market.

    If that hasn't put you off, the compliance stations don't quote or do work (usually), you need to remove the car and get it fixed up and return it. Once the car has passed compliance, you'll be issued with an MR2a form. You take this to a registration agent (Post Office, VTNZ etc) and they will issue you with NZ registration plates.
    Taffy

    The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing you will make one.

  3. #3
    Ben123456789 is offline Junior Member
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    Thanks for the reply, I understand the process a bit better now.

    FYI, I got quoted around 1000 for roll on roll off about a year ago when I was looking into this originally. My car is a Subaru Impreza Turbo 2000. In the UK I would be lucky to get 2000 for it, but in NZ the same car with similar modifications (there are over 3000 of performance mods on my car) or an STI version would be $10k to $12k, which is a lot more than 2000 plus shipping.

    The Impreza WRX (which is a Jap import and essentially the same car as the Impreza Turbo 2000 in the UK) is very common in NZ, so presumably I shouldn't have a problem. But I will check with a vehicle certifier.

    If I imported it and it turned out not to be road legal, presumably I could still use it off-road (track racing)?

  4. #4
    Taffy's Avatar
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    Yeah seems like it may save a few coins (as long as the exchange rate doesn't move!). 2k for the car, 1k to ship, $1500 estimate for compliance and registration at current exchange rate is around $8000 all in. As you say, there shouldn't be issues with it as Subaru's are very common in NZ.

    If there are any issues and you can't get it registered, you are free to use it for racing. The only thing you can't do with it is use it on public roads.
    Taffy

    The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing you will make one.

  5. #5
    scarf is offline Junior Member
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    Hi, importing and registering a vehicle to/in NZ is not as bad as it seems if you talk to the right people first. I work as a vehicle certifier in Christchurch ,NZ and certify many cars imported from the UK. You need to proove 4 things to the certifier for your car
    1- proof of ownership and previous rego in UK
    2- proof of an approved frontal impact standard
    3-proof of an approved emission standard
    4-proof that the car and its components where built to a approved standard.

    There are exemptions if you can't proove or your car dosn't meet any of these standards.

    The process is- your car is cleared by MAF( they just check its got no snakes hiding in it!)
    They inform you its cleared and ready to pick up from the wharf
    You ring an approved tow truck to go pick your car up for you, and drop it anywhere you like.
    You take the car to a entry certification place.
    The certifier checks the four things above as well as a full structural and safety check.
    If all is okay then you get issued with a warrant of fitness and ownership papers, then you can drive away.
    If the vehicle fails eg needs a new tyre etc, you get given a fail sheet with the items needing attention, you take the car away get someone or yourself to fix these problems, take it back to get rechecked and passed, then your away driving.

    If you need any help give me full deatils of vehicle and i can tell you exactly what problems you will encounter.

  6. #6
    Paul Bateson is offline Junior Member
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    Default importing that car

    Hi there, you make the importation process sound reasonably pain free. i called a company today who wants 4000 nz to do everything. it sounds a bit steep?

  7. #7
    Taffy's Avatar
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    Does that include shipping?! That does sound quite pricey. I used to import cars from Japan and that was around $2200 for shipping and customs clearance, then on average $1200 to get the car to WOF standard and get it registered.
    Taffy

    The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing you will make one.

  8. #8
    scarf is offline Junior Member
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    Sounds really steep. Depends what it includes though.
    It will be a lot cheaper if you organise it yourself

  9. #9
    nikobulg is offline Junior Member
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    Default Hi scarf,I want to import car for me from japan,but not sure what cost is invilved

    Quote Originally Posted by scarf View Post
    Hi, importing and registering a vehicle to/in NZ is not as bad as it seems if you talk to the right people first. I work as a vehicle certifier in Christchurch ,NZ and certify many cars imported from the UK. You need to proove 4 things to the certifier for your car
    1- proof of ownership and previous rego in UK
    2- proof of an approved frontal impact standard
    3-proof of an approved emission standard
    4-proof that the car and its components where built to a approved standard.

    There are exemptions if you can't proove or your car dosn't meet any of these standards.

    The process is- your car is cleared by MAF( they just check its got no snakes hiding in it!)
    They inform you its cleared and ready to pick up from the wharf
    You ring an approved tow truck to go pick your car up for you, and drop it anywhere you like.
    You take the car to a entry certification place.
    The certifier checks the four things above as well as a full structural and safety check.
    If all is okay then you get issued with a warrant of fitness and ownership papers, then you can drive away.
    If the vehicle fails eg needs a new tyre etc, you get given a fail sheet with the items needing attention, you take the car away get someone or yourself to fix these problems, take it back to get rechecked and passed, then your away driving.

    If you need any help give me full deatils of vehicle and i can tell you exactly what problems you will encounter.
    Hi scarf,

    I am currently looking or found a Suzuki swift 2005.Chassis number:DBA-ZD11S.manual 4wd.it would cost me $3900 US or $4800nz which includes (FOB-2120+ freight-1730+ insuranse-50)total us3900$. What other cost will face here in nz so I can make my math is it worth it.
    Regards
    Niko

  10. #10
    scarf is offline Junior Member
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    You will be required to pay -gst (15%) on the price of the car and shipping (4800).
    -$nzd 300 approx for maf and customs clearance (sometimes included in shipping depeding on company used)
    -approx $nzd 80 tow truck from wharf to somewhere.
    -$nzd 450 for compliance check
    -$nzd 280 approx registration and number plates
    -$nzd ? for any repairs required should the vehicle fail the compliance check on anything.

    That is all
    Last edited by scarf; 26-01-2012 at 12:40 PM.

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