Go Back   English Forum Switzerland > Help & tips > Transportation/driving  
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 17.02.2011, 18:33
faugrad's Avatar
Newbie 1st class
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Zurich (from Fort Lauderdale)
Posts: 29
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 24 Times in 9 Posts
faugrad has no particular reputation at present
Should I take my car from the US to CH?

As some of you might know from my post in the introduction section, my wife and I are planning on working in Switzerland for 2-3 years. Has anyone here taken their car to Switzerland, is it worth the headache? I am torn between keeping it in storage here or taking it to Switzerland.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 17.02.2011, 18:51
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Geneva
Posts: 84
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 9 Times in 9 Posts
russiangeneva has no particular reputation at present
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

I'm picking my car tomorrow - so I'm biased.

My answer is - it depends.

1) do you have a diplomatic status? If yes, you'll find 25-35% discounts here.

2) How much is your car worth? If it's an old car - might not be worth it - if it's a newer model - it'll probably cost you 1,5-2 times more here

3) did you own it for 6 months prior to importation? if yes, then you can bring it in duty-free - if not - you'll pay duty + VAT

4) Will you be able to service it here easily? (i.e. US cars probably require US tools due to difference in measurement systems)

I'd say yes, go ahead. But it really depends on what your car is.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank russiangeneva for this useful post:
  #3  
Old 17.02.2011, 18:53
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Fribourg
Posts: 428
Groaned at 1 Time in 1 Post
Thanked 212 Times in 102 Posts
Millso has made some interesting contributions
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

Some things to bear in mind.

The average car in europe has between a 1 and 2.5 litre engine (if I recall correctly this is much lower than in the US), anymore than that is unusual unless your rich to very rich therefore insurance on cars with large engines can be very expensive.

Also petrol is much more expensive in europe in general than in the US so large engines can be very expensive to run. I don't know what your car is but it's something to be aware of.

Just research how much it would cost to run and also what kind of insurance prices you'd have to pay.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 17.02.2011, 19:13
faugrad's Avatar
Newbie 1st class
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Zurich (from Fort Lauderdale)
Posts: 29
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 24 Times in 9 Posts
faugrad has no particular reputation at present
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

1) do you have a diplomatic status? If yes, you'll find 25-35% discounts here.

No, just a regular Joe (do have a Swiss citizenship though)

2) How much is your car worth? If it's an old car - might not be worth it - if it's a newer model - it'll probably cost you 1,5-2 times more here

It's a 2007 VW GTI, it's worth about $14,000 over here, not sure what it's worth in CH

3) did you own it for 6 months prior to importation? if yes, then you can bring it in duty-free - if not - you'll pay duty + VAT

Yes, bought it new 4 years ago

4) Will you be able to service it here easily? (i.e. US cars probably require US tools due to difference in measurement systems)

Being a VW, service should be easy

Looks like I'll be researching insurance prices, taxes, etc in the coming days. Might be cheaper taking public transportation.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 18.02.2011, 10:47
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: la cote
Posts: 3,590
Groaned at 21 Times in 13 Posts
Thanked 3,241 Times in 1,702 Posts
runningdeer has a reputation beyond reputerunningdeer has a reputation beyond reputerunningdeer has a reputation beyond reputerunningdeer has a reputation beyond reputerunningdeer has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

A few more questions for your consideration--

1. Is the cost of transporting it covered by your employer or will you be footing the bill?

2. Where do you intend on living?, and what would your need be for a car?
--if living centrally in a large city, it may be more hassle and cost than it's worth, esp. parking. If absolutley need it by living in outlying area or intending to drive europe while here, maybe consider it.

3. Does it have any modifications or special features? if so, it may be difficult to get conformtiy or re-modify back to original.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 18.02.2011, 17:10
faugrad's Avatar
Newbie 1st class
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Zurich (from Fort Lauderdale)
Posts: 29
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 24 Times in 9 Posts
faugrad has no particular reputation at present
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

Quote:
View Post
A few more questions for your consideration--

1. Is the cost of transporting it covered by your employer or will you be footing the bill?

2. Where do you intend on living?, and what would your need be for a car?
--if living centrally in a large city, it may be more hassle and cost than it's worth, esp. parking. If absolutley need it by living in outlying area or intending to drive europe while here, maybe consider it.

3. Does it have any modifications or special features? if so, it may be difficult to get conformtiy or re-modify back to original.

1. I would be footing the bill.

2. I am pretty sure we will be moving to an outlying area even if I get a job in a city such as Zurich. The rent inside the city is just too much IMO.

3. Just a tune, no other modifications though.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 18.02.2011, 18:07
dodgyken's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Democratic Republic Kenistan
Posts: 10,653
Groaned at 280 Times in 231 Posts
Thanked 19,403 Times in 7,402 Posts
dodgyken has a reputation beyond reputedodgyken has a reputation beyond reputedodgyken has a reputation beyond reputedodgyken has a reputation beyond reputedodgyken has a reputation beyond reputedodgyken has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

If you are over for 2 years - will you take it back again? If yes - then think really hard about whether the cost in importing and exporting again is really worth the time and money.

I'd sell - and buy something cheap for the 2 years you are over here. Then sell when you leave. You'll get a car fresh from the MFK and so you shouldn't have any problems for 2 years
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 18.02.2011, 18:18
Treverus's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Work in ZH, live in SZ
Posts: 12,174
Groaned at 347 Times in 280 Posts
Thanked 23,337 Times in 8,433 Posts
Treverus has a reputation beyond reputeTreverus has a reputation beyond reputeTreverus has a reputation beyond reputeTreverus has a reputation beyond reputeTreverus has a reputation beyond reputeTreverus has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

It depends on the spec and milage, but you hardly get a 2007 GTI for lest than 20.000. (www.autoscout.ch)

If you milage is low and you are looking at more than 10000 value difference, I would import it. If the price difference is 5000, probably not.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Treverus for this useful post:
  #9  
Old 18.02.2011, 18:51
faugrad's Avatar
Newbie 1st class
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Zurich (from Fort Lauderdale)
Posts: 29
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 24 Times in 9 Posts
faugrad has no particular reputation at present
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

Quote:
View Post
If you are over for 2 years - will you take it back again? If yes - then think really hard about whether the cost in importing and exporting again is really worth the time and money.

I'd sell - and buy something cheap for the 2 years you are over here. Then sell when you leave. You'll get a car fresh from the MFK and so you shouldn't have any problems for 2 years
Yes, I would take it back again. That's why I am torn and leaning towards leaving it here.


Quote:
It depends on the spec and milage, but you hardly get a 2007 GTI for lest than 20.000. (www.autoscout.ch)

If you milage is low and you are looking at more than 10000 value difference, I would import it. If the price difference is 5000, probably not.
Car has 55,000 miles so about 88,000 km on the clock. Just looked at the site, and GTI's are double what they are over here.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 18.02.2011, 19:02
Suisse2008's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Genf/Waadt
Posts: 298
Groaned at 6 Times in 5 Posts
Thanked 262 Times in 134 Posts
Suisse2008 has earned some respectSuisse2008 has earned some respect
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

Something to consider is the homologation. Even though your car is a VW, the specification rules are different in each country, hence the models are specific to each country. I imported a car many years ago; at the time they required several changes (turn lights, back brake lights, speedometer in km instead of miles) and that cost money. They might have loosened the rules on the changes required but I would check this if I were you. It might cost you a bundle.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank Suisse2008 for this useful post:
  #11  
Old 19.02.2011, 02:37
richardm's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: #murica
Posts: 665
Groaned at 15 Times in 15 Posts
Thanked 241 Times in 145 Posts
richardm has earned the respect of manyrichardm has earned the respect of manyrichardm has earned the respect of many
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

Check the documentation... Import rules are more lax for 18.44 (household effects) imports then they are for existing residents. My car's changes: a pair of bulbs. That's it. I have Swiss plates now.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 19.02.2011, 09:40
Newbie
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Zurich
Posts: 7
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
bp33 has no particular reputation at present
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

& keep in mind, the swiss public transportation system is one of the incredible aspects (in a positive sense) of living here.

trains and buses will drop you off just about anywhere (hiking trails, ski areas).

- and if you really need a car, there is the Mobility car sharing (see other discussions on EF for this).

best,
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 19.02.2011, 11:59
Bookworm's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: near Muri AG
Posts: 181
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 139 Times in 79 Posts
Bookworm has earned some respectBookworm has earned some respect
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

I don't know much about cars so I was surprised to learn when I came here that the same model car in Europe was narrower than the US one -- I don't know if this is true of all makes. Anyway, the parking spots here are measured to centimeter ... so if you have a wide car, no chance of parking without a lot of dings in your doors!

I suggest leasing ...
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 20.02.2011, 13:25
Mark75's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: by the lake (either one)
Posts: 2,510
Groaned at 45 Times in 39 Posts
Thanked 3,136 Times in 1,363 Posts
Mark75 has a reputation beyond reputeMark75 has a reputation beyond reputeMark75 has a reputation beyond reputeMark75 has a reputation beyond reputeMark75 has a reputation beyond reputeMark75 has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

Quote:
View Post
I don't know much about cars so I was surprised to learn when I came here that the same model car in Europe was narrower than the US one[...]
I never heard about an otherwise identical model being narrower in Europe than in the US aside from minor differences due to different trim levels or equipment.

It's probably more like two different models being sold under the same name in different markets. E.g. the European Honda Accord is sold in the US as the Acura TSX while the US-spec Accord is bigger than the European one.

Last edited by Mark75; 20.02.2011 at 15:51. Reason: clarification
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 20.02.2011, 13:52
marton's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Kt. Zürich
Posts: 11,366
Groaned at 523 Times in 442 Posts
Thanked 20,376 Times in 10,725 Posts
marton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

Quote:
View Post
I don't know much about cars so I was surprised to learn when I came here that the same model car in Europe was narrower than the US one -- I don't know if this is true of all makes. Anyway, the parking spots here are measured to centimeter ... so if you have a wide car, no chance of parking without a lot of dings in your doors!

I suggest leasing ...
Most European cars are up to 72inches wide - like the one in the avatar that is 72 inches wide, while US full size autos & SUVs go up to 80 inches (over 80 inches require special lights in the US). Some european SUVs are over 6 foot wide like the Cayenne - 76 inches.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 20.02.2011, 21:18
richardm's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: #murica
Posts: 665
Groaned at 15 Times in 15 Posts
Thanked 241 Times in 145 Posts
richardm has earned the respect of manyrichardm has earned the respect of manyrichardm has earned the respect of many
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

Quote:
View Post
I don't know much about cars so I was surprised to learn when I came here that the same model car in Europe was narrower than the US one -- I don't know if this is true of all makes. Anyway, the parking spots here are measured to centimeter ... so if you have a wide car, no chance of parking without a lot of dings in your doors!

I suggest leasing ...
I don't know about narrower but they do tend to be a bit longer. The Jazz, for example, is 15cm longer. US crash regulations often require some reinforcement at the ends of the car.
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 20.02.2011, 21:37
Village Idiot's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Basel
Posts: 3,686
Groaned at 35 Times in 32 Posts
Thanked 6,941 Times in 2,243 Posts
Village Idiot has a reputation beyond reputeVillage Idiot has a reputation beyond reputeVillage Idiot has a reputation beyond reputeVillage Idiot has a reputation beyond reputeVillage Idiot has a reputation beyond reputeVillage Idiot has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

For a car like yours, which is suitable for European roads and can be imported tax-free (provided you've owned it for 6 months), I'd import it in a heartbeat.
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 20.02.2011, 22:02
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Aargau
Posts: 62
Groaned at 1 Time in 1 Post
Thanked 64 Times in 34 Posts
amch has no particular reputation at present
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

Not sure if I would do it for a 4 year old car, but we brought a new Hyundai Santa Fe that we bought for $14,000 in the US (after lots of discounts and a trade in for an old car- 2009 was a great year to buy a new car in the US and a terrible one to try to sell an old one by ourselves). The same car would have been closer to 40k chf here. Even after paying 11% to the customs + about 2,500 for the lights +homologation, it was definitely worth it. The dealership here took care of all the paperwork and tests, even getting a letter of conformity for us. The only drawback is the cost of gas (2.7l engine). It is nice to go on trips though, we can pile in with 3 kids, skis and even take a friend of one of the kids along even on a long trip. Service is not an issue, the car is exactly the same as the one sold in Europe.
We shipped the car in the same container as the rest of household goods. Otherwise I remember getting quotes in the $1500 range to get the car alone to Bremerhaven.
Consider how much would you be able to sell the car for in the US if you don't bring it. Would you really get 14k? For 6k difference, I don't think the hassle is worth it.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank amch for this useful post:
  #19  
Old 25.02.2011, 07:06
Newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Zurich
Posts: 8
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
ivonburg has no particular reputation at present
Re: Should I take my car from the US to CH?

I have shipped my car from the US to CH, and it was super easy. It cost me $3500 from Los Angeles to Zurich, and was well worth it. Cars are so much more expensive here, and everyone has one, so it is useful. If you need a shipping company, I have a great one. Good luck!
Reply With Quote
Reply




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Swiss Car Insurance on Foreign Registered Car? gdaddy Insurance 12 20.11.2011 15:43
Interesting car situation; car on Zurich tourist plates inkiboo Transportation/driving 6 05.11.2009 15:05
long term car hiring or buying an used car. hsuray1986 Transportation/driving 1 28.07.2008 12:00


All times are GMT +2. The time now is 11:22.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
LinkBacks Enabled by vBSEO 3.1.0