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Old 09-10-2012, 09:17 AM   #46
330zhp
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When my car arrived from the USA I just had a short visit to Canadian Tire where they verfied it 'Canadian' legal....$125 visit is all. I've had my car for the whole warm season now and am I completely happy. Tons of people have asked about the process I used to get such a car at such a reasonable price. They can't believe the car is 7 years old, and in mint condition. I'm just now organizing a safe and warm winter storage but i hope for some good colourful September/October driving yet... bit I'll miss it during the winter!
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Old 09-10-2012, 11:59 AM   #47
bigcletus
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330zhp, when did you import it ?? Did you bring a recall letter from the US ??? No visit to BMW dealer here ?? Were DRLs turned on in the US ??

Sorry for the ??? but I want to get as much info as possible.

Thanks
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Old 10-06-2012, 10:31 PM   #48
JiffyPop
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If your buying a used car privately, could you get the seller to write up a bill of sale for a smaller amount then what you paid so the 19% worth of taxes is reduced?
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Old 10-07-2012, 12:33 AM   #49
dcramer
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Yes, you could, but the border agents aren't stupid. You will be fined as well as have to pay the HST if they figure it out. They will look on craigslist, ebay, forums etc. My brother in law tried it, and paid for it.
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Old 10-07-2012, 01:10 PM   #50
330zhp
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigcletus View Post
330zhp, when did you import it ?? Did you bring a recall letter from the US ??? No visit to BMW dealer here ?? Were DRLs turned on in the US ??

Sorry for the ??? but I want to get as much info as possible.

Thanks
Brought it over the border in May, Yes, all the recall papers had to be in order before it left the USA. A BMW dealer down there did a PPI and an update of the recall notices was inclcuded in that service. They also did the DRL's. This cost a few hundred $'s but is necessary. Upon delivery I simply took it to a Canadian Tire to get the Canadian stamp of approval. You have a form that crosses the border with the car which you must present to Canadian tire within a limited time-frame. I also immediately went to a very good import (and independant) service shop in Barrie and he went over the car for me also as I still had the option of returning (a great benefit in dealing with Sportscarlocate!) it if I was unhappy. He thought it was a great find, very sound in every way. He was NOT a BMW dealer but services older BMW's MB and other higher end imports. Mine being a 2005 had no warranty so his inspection was important for me.
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Old 03-25-2016, 12:38 PM   #51
tanet15
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Instrument Cluster

How did you talk your way out of the instrument cluster change? When I purchased my U.S. 2011 BMW X5, they required me to change the cluster to km/hr and it cost me $3500 ! Do you know if this is still a requirement for the 2016 model?



Quote:
Originally Posted by HalifaxMMM View Post
I just recently imported a BMW after weeks of research on this forum – I thought I should compile all my findings to new buyers. I’ll try to update this as people add to the thread.

Step 1: Finding the right BMW

Everyone has their own way of sourcing vehicles, but my main source that I used when exploring used cars in the United States was from autotrader.COM (similar to autotrader.ca that we use in Canada). Keep in mind that if the VIN number starts with a LETTER, it is not made in North America and is subject to the 6.1% duty. The BMW X5 and X3 begin with numbers, which means they are made in North America and are not subject to the 6.1% duty.

You can narrow your results on this depending on where you live in Canada and how far from the border you are willing to drive. Make sure you have a local mechanic in the area check out the car, and possibly even a dealer in the area who can tell you what codes the car has been hitting (ie. HFPF issue on the 3 series)

Obtaining a Carfax is critical. Any history of the car being involved in a flood, lemon, junk status could mean that when you import the car into Canada, it will be branded as “Irreparable” which means it cannot be driven legally in Canada and only used for parts. Make sure your car is a clean title (no insurance write-offs, major accidents) – you wouldn’t want to buy a car involved in a major previous accident anyways.

Once all of the above is complete, you can proceed to purchasing the vehicle!

Step 2: First stage of Importing process / Paperwork

After purchasing your car in the U.S, you will need to e-mail your title to US Customs 72 hours prior to crossing the border so they will clear it for crossing. This is to ensure that the vehicle leaving the U.S is not stolen and does not have any liens outstanding (such as ownership by a Bank).

Emailing your title to US Customs (ie. If you are crossing the Lewiston Bridge):
E-mail your title to BuffaloVINNYOFFICE@dhs.gov with the VIN number, Make, Model and Year of car. You will then get a confirmation email from them. You MUST bring this e-mail with you when you export. (I will try to get a list of emails for all the bridges)

After dealing with US Customs, you will get into the line to cross the border into Canada with the following documents.

1. Passport
2. Bill of Sale
3. US State Title Certificate

Document you'll receive: Transport Canada Vehicle Import "Form 1" filled in and stamped by Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) as well as a Casual Goods Accounting Document which states the vehicle value and GST paid.

Both will be granted after you pay any applicable RIV fees and 6% GST on the value of vehicle.

If the vehicle was not made in the NAFTA zone (US/Canada/Mexico) you will also have to pay a 6.1% duty no matter the vehicle age. If you have air conditioning, expect to pay an extra $100 excise tax but don't bring this up if they don't because they don't always inspect the vehicles.

You will also have to pay the remainder of the tax (if you're in Ontario, you will pay the GST at the border, and the PST at the Ministry licensing office - the combined tax is 13% (HST)).


Step 3: After your car is in Canada

There are several things that need to be done after your car is in Canada prior to having it fully registered and licensed (this example is for Ontario).

1. Mechanical Safety Certification – this can be done at any local mechanic for about $50-100.

2. DriveClean Emissions Testing – this can be done at any DriveClean facility, they normally cost $35.

3. Registrar of Imported Vehicles Form 2 – In order to obtain the Form 2 from RIV, you will need to pay RIV $195. This can be done online on RIV.CA or by calling them at 1-888-848-8240. Make sure you have your Form 1 that you received at the border handy (the number on the top right is the Case ID).

You will also need to obtain a BMW recall clearance letter – this can be obtained by going into a Canadian BMW dealer (ie. BMW Toronto). They will charge you $500 and may push you to change your cluster (I was able to talk my way out of the cluster swap). I found out after I went through the process that Unity Auto in Toronto is able to provide these recall letters for less than what BMW is charging - I spoke to RIV and one of their reps (Stacy) confirmed this.

Sometimes if your lucky - RIV will already have your car's information in their system which tells them there are no open recalls on your car. This way you can skip this step altogether and get your Form 2!

After paying RIV and submitting the BMW recall letter, RIV will release your Form 2 on RIV’s website under “Track your case”.

4. Canadian Tire Inspection – This service is free, the main thing they check for is that your daytime running lamps are working when the ignition turns on. If your car does not have the ability to turn on DRL through your i-Drive, there are plenty of Car Audio/Alarm shops that can do this for under $75. Ensure that you have all your paperwork (Form 1, Form 2, title). Once they stamp your form 2 – everything is complete!

5. Get Insurance! I went with TD since they had the best quote for me.

Step 4: Final Step (Registration! Woohoo)

Finally – you walk into any local Ministry of Transportation location with your Form 1, Form 2, bill of sale, title, mechanical safety, and emissions test. The balance of your taxes (you only paid GST at the border) will be payable at this point.

Sit back and enjoy your BMW
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Old 03-28-2016, 01:47 PM   #52
ac_2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tanet15 View Post
How did you talk your way out of the instrument cluster change? When I purchased my U.S. 2011 BMW X5, they required me to change the cluster to km/hr and it cost me $3500 ! Do you know if this is still a requirement for the 2016 model?
Paying $3500 probably negated any benefit to buying a US car in the first place, no? Or most of it.

Did the government force you to buy the cluster from a dealership & have it coded, or would they just want to see the km/h units?

A brand new OEM cluster would've been $1000:
https://www.ecstuning.com/b-genuine-...r/62109236812/

Or you could've simply changed the dial insert itself for next to nothing.

This is why I'm intrigued to find out why you spent the amount you did.
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Old 03-28-2016, 01:52 PM   #53
HalifaxMMM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ac_2007 View Post
Paying $3500 probably negated any benefit to buying a US car in the first place, no? Or most of it.

Did the government force you to buy the cluster from a dealership & have it coded, or would they just want to see the km/h units?

A brand new OEM cluster would've been $1000:
https://www.ecstuning.com/b-genuine-...r/62109236812/

Or you could've simply changed the dial insert itself for next to nothing.

This is why I'm intrigued to find out why you spent the amount you did.
OP here, you could've visited www.recallcheck.ca and bypassed the cluster step. Sorry, I thought I posted it in my original posting but doesn't look like I did
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Old 04-19-2016, 08:37 AM   #54
DanielLee5
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Congrats ! I bought a car at the USA , too ( via this service https://clearit.ca/ ), it turned really cheaper , moreover , I am completely satisfied with the quality , it is just excellent ( I bought a used car, too ).
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