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Old 08.08.2008, 22:16
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Importing a used car from Germany

i was talking about getting another car, and a friend asked me to look at mobile.de ... a quick look around showed that

a) the prices of used cars there appear to be significantly lower than equivalent CHF values of comparable cars here
b) it goes without saying that they have a larger selection of vehicles than most swiss sites
c) many vehicles indicate that 19% German VAT can be reclaimed (if the car is exported out of the EU)

I have read thru all the threads here on the subject of importing a vehicle, and it appears that

a) there is no customs duty to be paid for a car that originated in the EU
b) the vehicle tax amounts to 4%
c) Swiss VAT needs to be paid at 7.6%
d) most standard EU cars should not need any modification at all to be admitted into CH

in short, it appears that I can bring in a car at listed gross price less 19%, then pay some 11-12% to the Swiss, and with a small amount of paperwork, I'm home free

this could potentially be interesting for many of us here.
now, anyone actually done this and can shed some light on the subject?






So on the whole,

Last edited by dino; 08.08.2008 at 22:17. Reason: spelling
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Old 10.08.2008, 18:56
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

All the information you need (in english):

http://www.ezv.admin.ch/zollinfo_pri...x.html?lang=en
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  #3  
Old 12.08.2008, 14:49
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

thanks for that scriptis

as I said, I've read everything that has been posted on the forum.. just wondering if anyone has actually done this, and if it does work out as simple as it says in the documents (particularly the refund of the 19% German VAT)
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Old 12.08.2008, 15:05
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

If you buy a car from a private seller in Germany, he will not charge you 19% VAT, in fact, he won't charge you any VAT at all. So nothing to claim back at the border.

With dealers, it depends. If it's a commission sale, no VAT is charged or paid either. So caveat emptor (buyer beware). Make sure you get an invoice / receipt that clearly shows the VAT amount included in the purchase price.
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Old 21.04.2011, 16:50
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

Hi,
I was wondering as the search function did not give me much results>


That VAT reclaim from Germany for buying a car at a dealer, is that also valid for 2nd hand vehicle?

For example:
The dealer Ford whatever in Germany has a 2nd hand car. I buy it to import it in germany. Is that possible to reclaim the VAT?

I heard conflicting version such as #no its only for new vehicle.
But on 2nd hand dealer-s websites it says tax reclaimable...


Thanks.
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Old 24.06.2011, 10:38
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

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Hi,
I was wondering as the search function did not give me much results>


That VAT reclaim from Germany for buying a car at a dealer, is that also valid for 2nd hand vehicle?

For example:
The dealer Ford whatever in Germany has a 2nd hand car. I buy it to import it in germany. Is that possible to reclaim the VAT?

I heard conflicting version such as #no its only for new vehicle.
But on 2nd hand dealer-s websites it says tax reclaimable...


Thanks.
I post an update as some users have been asking me- about the answer!

1) Yes it's possible to claim VAT back from a dealer in Germany about a 2nd hand vehicle.

2) Those vehicles are the one they can give you the VAT back (usually vehicle from companies or from previous leasing)- it's stated on mobile.de or autoscout.de. Check the little "box" saying "vat reclaimable" when doing the search. 95% of cars I have seen which were marked as "vat reclaimable" were really "vat reclaimable". Sometimes the dealer assistant said it's not "vat reclaimable" because they don't know the process.


3)Of course it's reclaimable if you're leaving out of UE= Switzerland

4) It's possible also in Italy or France. But Italy the dealers are less familiar with the export process, and in france there's really limited amount in vehicles.

5) The real question is : it is worthy?. answer:
Definitely not worthy for any vehicle less than 15000chf minimum- in terms of hassle, efforts, duration, money.
But as stated on this forum it's worthy for expensive vehicles.

6) The key relies on the VAT difference:
19% back from Germany and 8%+4% to pay for Switzerland. All other costs are fixed and should not raise above 500-1000chf.
Therefore if your car costed the equivalent of 15000chf:
You get back 2850chf. But need to pay 1800.
Ie you "save" 1050CH". of which will be greatly deduced the other costs.

But if your car is 40 000chf:
You get back 7600chf. But need to pay 4800. You save 2800chf!!!


7) Remember to get EUR1 form or you risk to pay lot of money.

Edit:
8) Of course the "base cost" of the 2nd hand vehicle is cheaper in Germany. I noticed price difference between similar car in Switzerland and Germany of about 1500chf minimum for the type of vehicle I was looking for. Some will say that the cars here are in very good condition and have a much higher market value (reselling cost, etc...).


etc...
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Old 24.06.2011, 11:04
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

Example:


Always ignore the "CAR NEW PRICE". You won't know it.

The German dealer is selling the car 2nd hand at a price.
Let's say it's a red Ford Taurus () for 15000euros.

The dealer adverted it as "VAT reclaimable".


1) If you live in Switzerland and decide to buy it: You will get 19% of the 15000euros= 2850 Euros back.
At the import (customs at borders) they will claim 8% for TVA and 4% import fee (of purchased price)= 1850Euros to pay.
Then you'll need to pay quite a few administrative extras, and take the risk some things are not "complying" and pay more-
Ex: I had to replace rear disk brakes for Swiss inspection= +780CHF additional.
But those )(mechanical issues excepted) won't go over 1000chf.



2) How much cost such car, 2nd hand in Switzerland?

Probably more, let's say a Red ford taurus would costs the equivalent of 17000euros. Yes it's higher. But the only "profit" you would make it's the 7% difference between German VAT (19%) and Things to pay in Swiss (8%+4%+ additional).
So at the end it might be better to buy in Switzerland.

Unless of course if you go for expansive car, where 7% would make the whole difference!
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Old 24.06.2011, 11:31
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

Good Useful Info for people here Nice work
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Old 03.07.2011, 19:35
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

Sorry everyone I'm missing something here.

Why are we discussing VAT (MWST) on used cars? Surely if you're buying a used car in Germany there's no VAT/MWST.

Vat is only paid once when the car is new.
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Old 03.07.2011, 19:37
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

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Sorry everyone I'm missing something here.

Why are we discussing VAT (MWST) on used cars? Surely if you're buying a used car in Germany there's no VAT/MWST.

Vat is only paid once when the car is new.
Not true.
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  #11  
Old 07.07.2011, 15:42
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

Don't do it!

You must go on MFK (car check) and they will find 1001 possible reasons not to let you pas.

My German colleague bring his car directly from German test (witch is very, very thorough) and he was forced to change complete brake system , windscreen and both front lights just because of small scratches.

And all of that just because he didn't want to go to Swiss service stations.
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Old 07.07.2011, 16:04
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

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Don't do it!

You must go on MFK (car check) and they will find 1001 possible reasons not to let you pas.

My German colleague bring his car directly from German test (witch is very, very thorough) and he was forced to change complete brake system , windscreen and both front lights just because of small scratches.

And all of that just because he didn't want to go to Swiss service stations.
I agree with Billy here-
They have "tighten" the process to be veeeery annoying and picky.
And the "little profit" (or saving) you make is going to be turned into additional expenses and risks.

But, billy, it's actually very worthy for expensive vehicles.

Look the forum, it's full of people earning 120 000chf/year and more who can buy BMW, AUDI, etc...

For the cost of a 40 000chf, the 7% saving represents 2800chf-
For 80 000chf it's 5600chf!
(on top of the fact that the base price of similar vehicle is cheaper in germany)
And probably those rich people are doing a technical check in germany prior to import, meaning less risks of "failing" the "technical exams".
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Old 12.07.2011, 16:42
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

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a) the prices of used cars there appear to be significantly lower than equivalent CHF values of comparable cars here
It means by importing 40 000CHF car you are getting yourself a car which costs 50 000CHF here ( leaving 2800CHF in your pocket)

I am looking for 3 years old Land Rover Defender and price difference can be up to 10K for 30-40K CHF car.

Also Euro is quite low now.

VERY tempting.
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Old 25.08.2011, 23:34
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

I'm also thinking about buying a second hand car in Germany. I won't buy any car before see it very close, so I'm going to take the train directly to Hamburg (900KM I know...) to visit the stand (Autohus.de)

I'm looking for an Opel Astra 1.9 CDTI 100hp. After searching in comparis.ch, I realised this car In Switzerland costs about 8500CHF, with 130000KM. In Germany this car, with the same KMs costs 5400EUR (VTA included) which corresponds to 6180CHF.

Now, let's take the profit from VTA: 6180CHF less the 7% taken from the VTA advantage = 5750CHF. I'm saving 2750CHF

I think that importing cars from Germany is worth even for cars cheaper than 15000CHF. In the case of Opel Astra it's worth for sure.


Quote:
Then you'll need to pay quite a few administrative extras
Now my question is about the costs to complete the process. CorsebouTheReturn, can you be more specific in this point pls? Whats extras and costs?

About the MFK. I think they are very meticulous for every cars, it doesn't matter if it's imported car or not. How do you know they aren't also picky with Swiss registered cars? In fact, it scares me a little... I'm going to buy a car with 130000KM, so I'm sure there are alot of parts that won't be in perfect condition.

Autohus.de is one of the biggests stand in Europe, I think I can trust in their cars. Once a car has been checked and cleaned by them, it is inspected and assessed by an outside independent automotive expert.


Relatively to the necessary documents to import a car, I went directly to the MFK and asked them, I didn't understood half of what the man was saying but he gave a paper with some important topics

- Formulaire 13.20A (What is this???!!)
- Preuve de 1ere mise en circulation ŕ l' étranger (regular documents of the car that everyone must have when driving)
- COC - certificate of conformity (long list with all technical details, in Autohus it costs 90€...)
- Acquit ou quittance des douanes (the proof you paid the 8% + 4%)
- Carnet antipollution - y comrpis le service antipollution (Does anyone know what is this? Maybe the EUR1 stands for this?)

Thanks in advance
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Old 25.08.2011, 23:44
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

Aside from anything to do with whether it's a bargain to import from Germany or not, when the gearbox, or other major item fails at 140,000 kms, how will you get the car back to Hamburg??

BTW don't forget to deduct the rail/air fare to Hamburg and the fuel back and your time - presumed to be 2 days and an overnight stop from the CHF2750 saving...
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Old 26.08.2011, 01:18
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

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I think that importing cars from Germany is worth even for cars cheaper than 15000CHF. In the case of Opel Astra it's worth for sure.




Now my question is about the costs to complete the process. CorsebouTheReturn, can you be more specific in this point pls? Whats extras and costs?

About the MFK. I think they are very meticulous for every cars, it doesn't matter if it's imported car or not. How do you know they aren't also picky with Swiss registered cars? In fact, it scares me a little... I'm going to buy a car with 130000KM, so I'm sure there are alot of parts that won't be in perfect condition.

Autohus.de is one of the biggests stand in Europe, I think I can trust in their cars. Once a car has been checked and cleaned by them, it is inspected and assessed by an outside independent automotive expert.


Relatively to the necessary documents to import a car, I went directly to the MFK and asked them, I didn't understood half of what the man was saying but he gave a paper with some important topics

- Formulaire 13.20A (What is this???!!)
- Preuve de 1ere mise en circulation ŕ l' étranger (regular documents of the car that everyone must have when driving)
- COC - certificate of conformity (long list with all technical details, in Autohus it costs 90€...)
- Acquit ou quittance des douanes (the proof you paid the 8% + 4%)
- Carnet antipollution - y comrpis le service antipollution (Does anyone know what is this? Maybe the EUR1 stands for this?)

Thanks in advance

I just payed 21 % to import mine (it was free but whatever) I told them it was worth (and that i bought it for 3k)
carnet antipollotion is your emissions test. ask for this from your opel garage (mine was 25euros) then you can go to any gargae and have the test done (test to be done BEFORE the mfk) 13.20 they will giove you at the border. if you do not know good german someone else has to fill this in for you (80CHF)

in your case it really is not worth importing as you will maybe save a couple of 100 imho

my import cost was 1500ish including all
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Old 26.08.2011, 01:20
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

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Aside from anything to do with whether it's a bargain to import from Germany or not, when the gearbox, or other major item fails at 140,000 kms, how will you get the car back to Hamburg??

BTW don't forget to deduct the rail/air fare to Hamburg and the fuel back and your time - presumed to be 2 days and an overnight stop from the CHF2750 saving...

why would you bring it back to hamburg? any garage can fix it....IF it breaks
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Old 26.08.2011, 07:40
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

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why would you bring it back to hamburg? any garage can fix it....IF it breaks
Not if he garage in Hamburg has offered a warrantee...
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Old 26.08.2011, 08:35
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

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Not if he garage in Hamburg has offered a warrantee...
A warranty on a used Astra with 100'000 + km? You're 'avin a larf! He'll get statutory warranty if he buys from a dealer, but that'll be it.
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Old 26.08.2011, 18:17
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Re: Importing a used car from Germany

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Aside from anything to do with whether it's a bargain to import from Germany or not, when the gearbox, or other major item fails at 140,000 kms, how will you get the car back to Hamburg??

BTW don't forget to deduct the rail/air fare to Hamburg and the fuel back and your time - presumed to be 2 days and an overnight stop from the CHF2750 saving...
If you don't like to take risks buy a new car. I'm sure that buying a 130000KM car anywhere in the world always take risks. I already bought two cars in Germany when I lived in Portugal, now I'm just living 900KM far away from there... it's not a big deal.
An item such as a gearbox is not supposed to fail at 130000KM neither other major item.
Anyway, if I want to, I can have the warranty for 1 year, but have to pay extra 399€.

About the fare and the fuel back it's going to be around 200€. No problem about that, I see it as tourism. I was planning to visit Berlin soon, this way I will take advantage from the fact that Hamburg is so close

Anthony1406, can I do the carnet antipollution in any garage? I didn't understood what's the point about visiting the opel garage first?

Quote:
warranty on a used Astra with 100'000 + km? You're 'avin a larf! He'll get statutory warranty if he buys from a dealer, but that'll be it.
The warranty from Opel expired, only the warranty from the dealer (if I pay for it).


By buying in Germany I'm saving 2750CHF. Then I have to subtract 300CHF for documents and 250CHF for rail/fuel. I don't expect to have any surprise at MFK because every car in Autohus.de is inspected by Dekra (vehicle inspections). As it says on the website "All our cars come with reports which are available for your inspection. You can see these reports on our terminal.". With all the costs included I expect to save at least 2000CHF, I consider it alot of money. If you think it isn't I can give you my IBAN
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