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Old 12-31-2007, 05:45 PM   #1
2nd Gear Member
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: missy
Posts: 70
Is it worth it to Import used from the US?

Hey guys, new member here. I've been browsing through alot of the threads on here for awhile now as I am really interested in buying an e36 m3 or 328i for my next car. I tried the search button and found some people who were looking to do the same as I plan to, but these threads were pretty old, and I know that the RIV has made some changes to the BMW/Mini admissibility list. The reason im looking to the states is because my dad has just bought a place in Florida and he brought fourth the idea of buying a car down there and driving it back up here to Mississauga. However, I don't have a tonn of money to spend. In the end i'd like to spend no more than $13,000. I have found some nice looking e36 m3's, a 97, and two 98's for around $12,000 with milage ranging from 135,000km to 160,000km. I just wanted to know if there was anyone else in the area who has maybe had some experince doing this, or even knows someone who did this recently. I just don't know if it will be worth the hassle. Should i just save up and buy a car here instead?

Thanks in advance for helping out a newbie!
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Old 01-29-2008, 02:09 PM   #2
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Orillia
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Hey Davis

I recently brought a 97 E49 528i back from Florida. I bought it on ebay site unseen...I got it for a good price. But as in any purchase you get what pay for. The car runs excellent except for an annoying ABS/ASC sensor light that I cannot get off. Various other little things like the rear window actuators are gone too. So the first thing to do is find a good clean car. DO NOT spend all your money on buying the car, as you will have to put some into it when bring it over.

First off, you have to pay 6% import duty on BMW. Then GST and PST along with the RIV fee. To get the recall clearance letter from BMW will cost another $500.00. And there is no way out of it. Since you will pay less for a car in the will save that much on the taxes alone.

All in, I saved a couple thousand over a car here. But i have a 10 year old car with absolutely no rust anywhere. Almost hate driving it in the snow.
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Old 01-29-2008, 03:07 PM   #3
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Posts: 6,247
Basically, it's only worth it for a reasonably expensive car. There's a baseline of how much you have to pay, so a 500 dollar car might end up being like 2500 (after transport and various fees). So if you're saving 500-1k over the price here, not worth it. But if you're buying a new car that's 30k here and 25 there, then you're still up several thousand dollars.
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Old 01-29-2008, 04:48 PM   #4
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: missy
Posts: 70
Thanks for the replies! I will be able to see the car that I purchase in person, so I'll try to test everything out when I'm there. Thanks for the advice guys, and if I end up doing it, I'll post up how it went and some pics of the car!

thanks again
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