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-   -   How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH (https://www.englishforum.ch/transportation-driving/150141-how-privately-import-car-eu-ch.html)

p42 25.05.2020 21:36

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
You can keep your car on foreign plates for a year assuming your foreign insurer is OK with that. After a year sell your car back home or give it to a trader, or list on ricardo.ch from 1chf.

media_scotland 14.06.2020 10:51

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
Does anyone have any clarity on how long you have to wait until you can sell an imported car? Is it one year from when you get the documents stamped as you go through the border or is it when you first get your Swiss plates? I understand if you sell before the year is up you will have to pay some taxes.

Moved from Germany in March, should be Swiss plates this week. Need to buy a bigger car in Switzerland due to an expanding family.

ExploringLuzern 29.07.2021 12:40

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
Hi all,

I've read that it can take a few weeks before your car can go for the MFK. Although, when I export my car from the Netherlands, I will get a temporary license plate that's valid for just 2 weeks.
What do I do when I run out of time before getting swiss plates? Because officially, I would be uninsured, which is a no-go.

Are there other temporary licenses possible, or should the garage pick my car up with a tow vehicle of some sort? (and pay a hefty price)
I luckily do have a private parking garage where I can store the car legally without (insured) plates.

k_and_e 29.07.2021 13:52

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ExploringLuzern (Post 3332577)
Hi all,

I've read that it can take a few weeks before your car can go for the MFK. Although, when I export my car from the Netherlands, I will get a temporary license plate that's valid for just 2 weeks.
What do I do when I run out of time before getting swiss plates? Because officially, I would be uninsured, which is a no-go.

Are there other temporary licenses possible, or should the garage pick my car up with a tow vehicle of some sort? (and pay a hefty price)
I luckily do have a private parking garage where I can store the car legally without (insured) plates.

Cars in Holland are much more expensive than in Switzerland. It might be a better idea to sell the car in Holland and buy a new one here.

st2lemans 29.07.2021 13:54

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
It can take the better park of year, not just weeks.

Tom

p42 29.07.2021 14:13

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
It is a big lose in terms of money in most cases. Such fantastic bargains here used. You might be able to get the appointment brought forward. Agree the process could take a year with many "pointless" happenings. Pretty sure you can get Swiss day plates to drive for inspection. The car will be less desirable than a cheap Swiss equivalent when you sell. I do miss my Vauxhall Cavalier from the UK. I bought a V8 Audi S6 which ended up far more practical.

Landers 29.07.2021 16:07

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
Can't you keep your car on NL plates until after the MFK?

ExploringLuzern 30.07.2021 21:56

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
Sorry for my late reply, busy 'prepping for the move :)


Quote:

Originally Posted by k_and_e (Post 3332606)
Cars in Holland are much more expensive than in Switzerland. It might be a better idea to sell the car in Holland and buy a new one here.

From what I've seen on Comparis, the prices don't differ all too much. It's only a 2004 Audi A3, I think prices on older cars vary less in price between CH and NL.

Quote:

Originally Posted by st2lemans (Post 3332607)
It can take the better park of year, not just weeks.

Tom

I meant that if my temporary license expires because MFK takes too long, my insurance will expire too. In that case, your car is not allowed on the road, not even parked. Unless you're in a private parking spot/garage, which I luckily have.
Hopefully there's something like a temporary swiss plate I can use in that situation, like p42 mentions.

Quote:

Originally Posted by p42 (Post 3332613)
It is a big lose in terms of money in most cases. Such fantastic bargains here used. You might be able to get the appointment brought forward. Agree the process could take a year with many "pointless" happenings. Pretty sure you can get Swiss day plates to drive for inspection. The car will be less desirable than a cheap Swiss equivalent when you sell. I do miss my Vauxhall Cavalier from the UK. I bought a V8 Audi S6 which ended up far more practical.

I'm already moving next Tuesday, and in hindsight, it would have been better to just sell the car before I go. But as I'm going back to uni, my point of view is to just drive the car until its wheels fall off. I won't have money to buy anything else in the next 2 years, so I'm just hanging on this car for a while.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Landers (Post 3332655)
Can't you keep your car on NL plates until after the MFK?

I don't think that's how it works, not sure though. I think when they allow you to drive with your original license, they expect it to have passed some form of inspection in your home country. MFK is only for if you have or want Swiss plates if I'm correct.

The problem here is that CH says I can totally drive with my Dutch plates for a year, but there's no insurer in the Netherlands that will cover you when you register as a citizen abroad. I want that permit to have a part-time job, so I'm registering, which means I can't drive on Dutch plates.

From what I've found, importing my car should cost around 400CFH, which would be fine for me. I just hope that the whole MFK process will be smooth sailing and that I don't get stuck with a car without plates and insurance to even get to the MFK inspection.

ExploringLuzern 30.07.2021 22:00

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ExploringLuzern (Post 3333027)

I don't think that's how it works, not sure though. I think when they allow you to drive with your original license, they expect it to have passed some form of inspection in your home country. MFK is only for if you have or want Swiss plates if I'm correct.

Whoops, I misunderstood you there, but I can't insure my car when I'm deregistering in the Netherlands and registering abroad. And I have to hand in my Dutch plates when I export it from the Netherlands.

Landers 30.07.2021 22:18

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ExploringLuzern (Post 3333030)
Whoops, I misunderstood you there, but I can't insure my car when I'm deregistering in the Netherlands and registering abroad. And I have to hand in my Dutch plates when I export it from the Netherlands.

OK, I didn't realise that as Dutch citizen you had to personally deregister and also deregister your car when moving to another (non-EU) country.

When I brought my car (pre-Brexit) it was still registered in the UK. I got my export stamp at German customs but it had no effect in the UK. I drove it to the MFK on UK plates although of course I had to also have Swiss insurance in place/ready in order to get the Swiss plates. The car now sits on the original UK plates in the UK. I always though maintained a residence and some kind of residency in the UK.

st2lemans 30.07.2021 22:23

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
I imported one of my bikes from the US, and drove on US plates with Swiss insurance for the 10 months that it took to get the Swiss plates (two special MFKs later).

Tom

p42 31.07.2021 10:56

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
Your car sounds like a typical student car. Switzerland is a car buying paradise at the low end. Decent spec A3 start from 500chf. A dealer is selling a nice looking A3 with leather and Clima for 800, you might get it for 600 or 700. It is Ab Platz/for export, so will need an MFK.

The biggest immediate problem I see for you will be insurance, that will be 300 more than the cheapest Swiss online, insurance here is crazy cheap for basic cover. If/when you fail at that the cost of day plates, and renting garage parking space while the car is off the road uninsured. This could all take a year, and is a mental headache while you study. You are only here for 3 years I guess.

One big issue, an issue for anyone here every few years, will be getting the car through an MFK (The periodic safety check, typically 3 yearly intervals). You will need to clean the engine underneath, and fix any oil leaks, or at least make sure they are not visible on the day. Replace rotted rubber bushes, no play in steering, brakes OK, etc. Clean the windows inside and out, check bulbs, empty stuff inside, the usual MFK prep stuff you read on here. You could join TCS for a year's recovery service and show the car to them ASAP, they will do a pre test but it is all money. It can be surprising to know what unsafe things will pass, like tyres that are marginal but comply to the letter of the law, and what won't. There is an A3 on Ricardo with problems, but it won't need an MFK for a few years but it is drivable the seller says. I don't see that reaching 500chf on Ricardo. Cars like that are there every week. Why not buy that, swap parts between cars to make it perfect, put your car with the worst parts of the two on ebay Holland, say the car is in Switzerland, that you will drive it to the Seller's house after payment, come back on the Flexbus.

You will save 100s on insurance, get it done in one weekend, can visit family, and will end up ahead financially most likely and with a better car ready to go! The only thing stopping car flippers doing similar, is having paperwork to sell cheap Swiss cars in more expensive EU countries!

If you do put it through the test here, we would like to know if there is anything on a vanilla A3 that needs changing when bringing it it!

ExploringLuzern 31.07.2021 14:50

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by p42 (Post 3333075)
Your car sounds like a typical student car. Switzerland is a car buying paradise at the low end. Decent spec A3 start from 500chf. A dealer is selling a nice looking A3 with leather and Clima for 800, you might get it for 600 or 700. It is Ab Platz/for export, so will need an MFK.

The biggest immediate problem I see for you will be insurance, that will be 300 more than the cheapest Swiss online, insurance here is crazy cheap for basic cover. If/when you fail at that the cost of day plates, and renting garage parking space while the car is off the road uninsured. This could all take a year, and is a mental headache while you study. You are only here for 3 years I guess.

One big issue, an issue for anyone here every few years, will be getting the car through an MFK (The periodic safety check, typically 3 yearly intervals). You will need to clean the engine underneath, and fix any oil leaks, or at least make sure they are not visible on the day. Replace rotted rubber bushes, no play in steering, brakes OK, etc. Clean the windows inside and out, check bulbs, empty stuff inside, the usual MFK prep stuff you read on here. You could join TCS for a year's recovery service and show the car to them ASAP, they will do a pre test but it is all money. It can be surprising to know what unsafe things will pass, like tyres that are marginal but comply to the letter of the law, and what won't. There is an A3 on Ricardo with problems, but it won't need an MFK for a few years but it is drivable the seller says. I don't see that reaching 500chf on Ricardo. Cars like that are there every week. Why not buy that, swap parts between cars to make it perfect, put your car with the worst parts of the two on ebay Holland, say the car is in Switzerland, that you will drive it to the Seller's house after payment, come back on the Flexbus.

You will save 100s on insurance, get it done in one weekend, can visit family, and will end up ahead financially most likely and with a better car ready to go! The only thing stopping car flippers doing similar, is having paperwork to sell cheap Swiss cars in more expensive EU countries!

If you do put it through the test here, we would like to know if there is anything on a vanilla A3 that needs changing when bringing it it!

Thanks for your elaborate response, I do think you misunderstand me though :)
My car is not a typical student car, as I bought it when I worked and had more to spend. I studied automotive engineering/business, I like cars in general and keep my car in the best condition I can afford. It's a 2004 Audi A3 1.6 FSI with 220k km's on the clock, these are in the 3000-4000 CHF range on Comparis. I paid 4200 euro for it, back when it had 135k km, so I think prices are just about the same in the Netherlands and Switzerland.

The MFK definitely is something I'm looking out for and I've done a bunch of maintenance over the last few weeks (incl. cleaning the engine etc). But you never now what they'll find. I've also read that it's about as strict as any other European car inspection, in that case everything should be fine as I've never had problems there. And then I've even read some messages here on EF that they were very easy and even passed a car with worn tyres etc. I do hope luck comes my way during MFK.
Although, like I mentioned before, in hindsight it would have been easier (and more efficient) to just have sold my car here and buy one there (or not). But I'm days away from leaving to Switzerland, so that's out of the picture.

I'm not sure if I understand your comment on the insurance. Is it more expensive to insure an imported car?
From what I've calculated on Comparis (Zurich insurance) insurance would be almost half of what I pay in the Netherlands and road tax is quite a lot less too.

My parking garage is included in the WG luckily and I pay a measly 10 CFH extra for it.

p42 31.07.2021 17:53

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ExploringLuzern (Post 3333100)
I'm not sure if I understand your comment on the insurance. Is it more expensive to insure an imported car?
From what I've calculated on Comparis (Zurich insurance) insurance would be almost half of what I pay in the Netherlands and road tax is quite a lot less too.
extra for it.

It will take more than 2 weeks to get the car sorted, 400chf to get the car passed for MFK and registration fees. You will need Dutch insurance to keep driving on dutch plates during that period or Swiss Day Plates. So you buy expensive Dutch insurance, foregoing much cheaper Swiss insurance. The 300chf saving was that premium, assuming you solve the 2 weeks only insurance problem. This looks like a min 1000chf loss when you add in more expensive road tax and yet unforseen hassles.

Have a look at autoscout, there is a nice 170k km 2004 2.0 Turbo FSI Quattro A3 fully loaded for 1200chf. It has serious hail damage, but if you got that for 1000 and you are into cars... That is almost the costs above so far.

ExploringLuzern 31.07.2021 20:22

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
If somebody has a tip on where and how to fix a temporary license and insurance, I'm all ears!

st2lemans 31.07.2021 20:25

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ExploringLuzern (Post 3333220)
If somebody has a tip on where and how to fix a temporary license and insurance, I'm all ears!

You can only do that AFTER it has Swiss MFK!

Tom

ExploringLuzern 31.07.2021 20:34

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by st2lemans (Post 3333221)
You can only do that AFTER it has Swiss MFK!

Tom

Why would you need a temporary license after you passed MFK? Because after MFK you get your Swiss plates, which allows you to get insurance too?

p42 31.07.2021 21:33

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by st2lemans (Post 3333221)
You can only do that AFTER it has Swiss MFK!

Tom

Oh dear. I assumed that once someone had a Stamm Nummer after paying import duties, they could then buy day plates for the purposes of driving to and from the inspection (possibly even to a garage for corrective works), and for the inspection its self.

I have had the problem that the STVA would not test a Swiss car that was not insured. They wanted me to buy day plates before they would test it. A different STVA were fine with a motorcycle without plates but that was 15 years ago now.

ExploringLuzern 06.08.2021 12:31

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
I wanted to get back to this discussion I started, as I've recently moved and now know more than before.

As I wanted no risks of running into problems I wanted to follow the prescribed methods by our government. Although the day before I left, I found out that the process that the Dutch government describes is very cumbersome and unnecessary for the export of your car (and the local registration of yourself).

After a long and intense phone call with the Dutch vehicle authorities, I found out that formally exporting your car in the Netherlands isn't even necessary (in contrary to what their website says) and that it only gives 1 extra export document, which is the proof of export. Which is needed for some countries...but not for Switzerland.
So yes, I didn't need to export my car, hand in my Dutch plates and get temporary insurance and plates. I just drove to Switzerland with my Dutch plates and declared it at the border with the 18.44 form and 15.30 form, as I'm a student.

So in the end it's all good, but it's been somewhat frustrating that trying to follow the formal rules makes things 10x more difficult and unnecessary.

DL21 06.08.2021 14:15

Re: How to PRIVATELY import a car EU to CH
 
a temporary license aka police plates require that you have a C permit or are a swiss citizen. they are about 200chf / day. so i'd rule that out.

just drive the car to CH, do the border import process (should be free if you owned the car 6 months and are moving here and then deregister it in NL after it already has swiss plates. it only takes a couple of weeks usually to get an appointment for the import mfk. call them - they usually have more slots that the one the automatically assign you.


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