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  #101  
Old 10.03.2008, 08:55
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Re: [Import] Bring car to Switzerland?

To clarify this: You can drive an imported car without paying import taxes for up to 2 years from your first entry into Switzerland. Your entry date into Switz is written in your permit. At the boarder with the car you ask for a paper with a stamp that basically says you are importing the car without import taxes. It took the Basel boarder control over an hour to look up all the information and issue the paper. Police asked us for this paper twice.

You only pay vat after your two years living here are up OR when you would like to register the car locally eg when you international rego/insurance expires. Local insurance can be obtained on international export plates, but you will need the paper from the boarder control.

For paying the vat you take your car to the Zollfreilager where they will determine the current value of your car. They look up the value in a book and then weigh the car. You pay them the vat in cash and they issue you with a stamped paper. Make sure your omissions test (little green sticker on your window from your last Swiss car service) is valid, clean your engine and you can now make a date for your registration control test :-) They will tell you what modifications are needed for local registration.

Sorry, some of this has been said before, but having first hand experience of this I thought it could be helpful.
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  #102  
Old 10.03.2008, 11:42
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Re: Importing a car from the US

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You raise a number of good points on differences between European cars made in the US and the challenge of importing back to Europe. Anyone have experience with importing BMWs. Am thinking of bringing my new Z4 over from the US to Switzerland.
Hi, I know a little bit about BMW electronics.

BMW configures cars for the USA and Europe differently.
The USA vehicle is marked as such in the "GM" code of the vehicle.

This means that for example, the nav system is loaded with US languages, the radio is programmed to US requirements, and certain features are/are not available in the US.

By changing the programming of the GM code from US to Europe you can then code your vehicle as a Euro vehicle.
This will make the radio work properly over here, eliminate the "Accept" screen on the nav (not required in Europe) and load some Euro languages if you want.

It will also set the rules for things like daytime running lights etc for compliance with Euro laws.

Be aware that authorised BMW dealers are normally NOT interested in changing the vehicles GM code. They work on the principle that "it shall stay the same as the factory made it"

So to change the GM code you need to find a friendly independent BMW garage with the right software tools.

Good luck!

PS: might be easier to sell the US Z4 and buy a Swiss Z4....
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  #103  
Old 11.03.2008, 20:23
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Re: [Import] Bring car to Switzerland?

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To clarify this: You can drive an imported car without paying import taxes for up to 2 years from your first entry into Switzerland. Your entry date into Switz is written in your permit. At the boarder with the car you ask for a paper with a stamp that basically says you are importing the car without import taxes. It took the Basel boarder control over an hour to look up all the information and issue the paper. Police asked us for this paper twice.

You only pay vat after your two years living here are up OR when you would like to register the car locally eg when you international rego/insurance expires. Local insurance can be obtained on international export plates, but you will need the paper from the boarder control.

For paying the vat you take your car to the Zollfreilager where they will determine the current value of your car. They look up the value in a book and then weigh the car. You pay them the vat in cash and they issue you with a stamped paper. Make sure your omissions test (little green sticker on your window from your last Swiss car service) is valid, clean your engine and you can now make a date for your registration control test :-) They will tell you what modifications are needed for local registration.

Sorry, some of this has been said before, but having first hand experience of this I thought it could be helpful.
Oh! So if you have a US Car, they will look up the value in Switzerland for the corresponding Euro-model! That VAT (11.6%?) on the Euro-model will be considerably MUCH more than its US value! Thanks for the info. I was thinking it would be based off of what US sale receipt, if the car ownership was less than 6 months.
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  #104  
Old 28.03.2008, 22:54
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Form 13.20A / Car import / what to do next???

Hi all

Can anyone help advise me pls?

We brought our car from Germany (german plates, german car, german docs) and now I have the Form 13.20A and the Insurance Doc from the Ins. co.

Do I just need to go to the Strassenverkehrsamt now with these docs and pay them and then I get a Swiss plate?

Or is there something else?

I am getting a bit confused as I have completed so much paperwork now, I am losing track!

Thanks for any input! Much appreciated.
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  #105  
Old 31.03.2008, 12:09
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Re: Form 13.20A / Car import / what to do next???

Why don't you ring the Strassenverkehrsamt and ask them?
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  #106  
Old 12.04.2008, 05:17
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US Cars in CH

Hi all,

I just found this forum and have read many of the postings. I too am thinking of bringing a US car to CH. However, my situation is somewhat different. It is very likely within a few weeks I will be made a job offer to move from the US to CH. I already have my cars.

I understand that I am allowed to drive on my US plates for 12 months. Does anyone know the real restrictions? Do I just bring the car in and drive (with insurance of course) or must I pass the emissions/noise testing?

Now fast forward a year. What must I do to get Swiss plates?

I will go into a little bit of background. In the US I live in a non-emission zone. As a result I do not have to sibmit to annual emissions testing. In the quest for a faster car, it has been modified. This includes no catalytic converter, louder exhaust (not unreasonable, just louder than stock), quasi-racing suspension, bigger turbo, bigger brakes, etc. The car is German manufactured automobile.

The US is very loose on allowing modifications to cars. I am not sure how CH would react to car like this being brought in. Would the garages be willing to pass it or would I have tons of problems?

The nice thing about bring the car, is that it paid for. It costs me only shipping. I would then have a car that can go a reasonable speed when visiting Germany. The bad part is that it may be very difficult to deal with.

I have a few options.
1) Bring the older Porsche that is modified to CH and deal with it.
2) Get rid of the older Porsche and go buy a relatively new 911 and have it shipped over. I wouldnt worry about the 6 months as sales tax in Colorado is about 7% and CH VAT is around 7%. If the car is exported I dont have to pay CO taxes. I can get a fairly new 911 here for $45K. The car would be stock and probably much easier to get into CH.
3) Leave the Porsche sitting in my garage in the USA (next to my other cars that will be left) and buy a cheaper car in CH. I am think a Boxster or Boxster S that is a few years old.

I must also state that I will probably buy a normal car (as part of the salary) for my wife. A two seat car won't work for the wife and kid and we need 2 cars. For the normal car I am partial to the A3 2.0TDi (well I really like the S3). I like the A3 because it is big enough to hold a few people but very easy to park. I have spent 20% of my time Germany over the past two years and have rented A3s most of the time. I just like the size for parking in the cities. For highway driving I liked the 3 series....

I realize that many people in Europe say one car is enough for a family but...

In the US we have a saying.

You can take the person out of the trailer park, but you can't take the trailer park out of the person.

This means, you can move an American out of the US, but you can't completely remove the "American" from the person. American families simply have an auto (or more) for each person. Asking my wife to not have a car just wouldnt work.

Anyways, TIA for any advice.

-Dana
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  #107  
Old 12.04.2008, 14:51
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Re: US Cars in CH

If you have read the many other posts about importing cars from the US then you should know that the general advice is don't bother,
Leave it behind and buy a new one here
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  #108  
Old 22.04.2008, 15:14
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Re: [Import] SUV to CH?

Hi, Richard!

I wonder if you can tell me if the best port to bring the car from the USA is Bremen, or if you have any other suggestion?

Kind regards

Lacke
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  #109  
Old 18.05.2008, 17:28
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Should we import 2 Toyota vehicles (RAV4 and 4Runner) from US to Geneva

I am considering an offer from Geneva based company.

My wife and I live in the US and have 2 cars:

- 2004 Toyota 4Runner: 3.4L, 4x4
- 2004 Toyota RAV4: 2.4L, 4x4

Both of these cars are almost paid off (and we love them to be honest - 100% reliable in every way).

Does it make sense to bring these vehicles to Geneva? I can already see how it might be difficult to park the 4Runner.

So many questions ...

- Shipping (company will pay for shipping)
- Any modifications? Possible costs?
- Insurance? Any experience insuring these vehicles?
- Any annual property taxes or road taxes specific to these vehicles?
- Is there LoJack equivalent in Geneva area? Possible installation costs?

Many thanks for advice.

Leon
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  #110  
Old 18.05.2008, 17:34
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Re: Should we import 2 Toyota vehicles (RAV4 and 4Runner) from US to Geneva

Big cars here are hard to park, just to warn you.

Here is a website on insurance`s www.comparis.ch

Hope it helps
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  #111  
Old 17.07.2008, 18:36
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Re: [Import] Bring car to Switzerland?

I've seen a lot of talk about importing new or new-ish cars..
Is it just wishful thinking to contemplate importing a 25 year old car from Germany to CH? I've got a soft spot in my heart for A1-body (Mk.1) diesel volkswagens, and there are a lot more of these on the market in germany than down here.. and by definition, an A1 diesel golf is well over 20 years old at the newest. Assuming it is a specimen in good enough condition to warrant the trouble, does anyone know if importation would be more than just a routine matter of paying VAT and import duty?
Is the TUV inspection comparable to MFK enough to make some guesses as to whether it'd have a chance at being registerable/drivable in CH? (still havent found a concrete list of inspection standards for MFK anywhere online)
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  #112  
Old 24.07.2008, 06:29
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Re: [Import] Bring car to Switzerland?

Is there anybody here who brought a US Toyota Prius in Switzerland? I'm seriously considering to do so. The only question is whether it'll be possible to service/repair the car if anything breaks. The US and the European versions are very similar, but I'm not sure, for example, that the electronic diagnostic system uses the same codes. The mechanics don't really know the answer (no experience with the US model). If anyone here has a first-hand experience, please share!
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  #113  
Old 24.07.2008, 07:11
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Re: [Import] Bring car to Switzerland?

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The US and the European versions are very similar, but I'm not sure, for example, that the electronic diagnostic system uses the same codes.
In the past (not sure if this still applies) the Euro-Prius had the advantage of being a plug-in hybrid. Meaning you could force the car to run only on battery power and plug it in at night to recharge thus saving money by using less or no gasoline. The US version wasn't allowed to operate in this manner.
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  #114  
Old 30.07.2008, 22:24
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Re: [Import] Bring car to Switzerland?

I have read this entire thread. It should probably eventually be digested into a sticky and then this can serve as the help thread.

A few of the most informative sites I have found so far:
http://switzerland.isyours.com/E/imm...les/index.html
(Registering and Importing sections)
http://en.comparis.ch/immigration/car/important.aspx#01
http://www.ezv.admin.ch/zollinfo_pri...x.html?lang=en
http://geneva.angloinfo.com/countrie...toregister.asp

I am currently in the US with a contact living near Zurich. Some of my contact's co-workers have mentioned a desire to import a car similar to mine, a 2006 Lotus Elise Sport (111R), and I was wondering if I might have some help breaking down all the expenses for such a transaction.

Here is my best guess at an itemized list of costs I will incur:
  1. Shipping and insurance (I estimate no more than $3000 USD if I drive the connections between ports. This includes gas.)
  2. Import Duty -
    1. Customs Duty (0%) - if I can acquire a EUR. 1 certificate
    2. Consumer Tax (4%)
    3. VAT (7.6%)
    4. Other (?%)
  3. Vehicle Registration
    1. The origin of assembly for the vehicle is Norwich, UK so I should be able to get a EUR. 1 certificate of compliance else...
    2. Technical Inspection by the Automobile Service (inspection for 130 CHF, and 45 CHF for the registration papers)
Did I miss anything obvious? Thanks in advance!
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  #115  
Old 31.07.2008, 07:45
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Re: [Import] Bring car to Switzerland?

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    1. The origin of assembly for the vehicle is Norwich, UK so I should be able to get a EUR. 1 certificate of compliance else...
    2. Technical Inspection by the Automobile Service (inspection for 130 CHF, and 45 CHF for the registration papers)
Iīm not sure if it was in this thread or another (And canīt be bothered to look) but it has been discussed at length that just because a car is built in Europe doesnīt mean it will meet European standards without a lot of modification,
I think the discussion was based around Porche and how US and European moels have completely different suspension set ups, and different Engine Management setups among other things.
I have no idea about the Lotus Elise but it could be an expensive assumption to make that because it was built in the UK then the EUR 1 cert or the inspection is a walk through.
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  #116  
Old 01.08.2008, 16:58
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Re: [Import] Bring car to Switzerland?

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Is there anybody here who brought a US Toyota Prius in Switzerland?
I do not think that it makes sense to import a relatively inexpensive car like the Prius from the US to Switzerland.

Base price in Switzerland is CHF 39'350 incl. taxes.

Base price in the US is US$ 21'500, at the current exchange rate of 1.05 plus 4% automobile tax plus 7.6% VAT you're at CHF 25'000. Then you need to ship the car which will cost a few thousand dollars and you will need to modify and register it which will add another few thousand (no idea how many). In the best case you will save a few thousand bucks, maybe not even that.

Importing can make sense for expensive cars or for cars that are not officially being sold here, but not for a Prius.

Last edited by Mark75; 01.08.2008 at 20:53.
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  #117  
Old 17.11.2008, 20:15
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Re: [Import] Bring car to Switzerland?

Perhaps I missed it, but please help me out.

I am Czech (EU citizen). I have my address in CZ (everybody has to keep an registered address in CZ as long as is CZ citizen) as well as in CH (resident visa in CH).

I brought my car to CH, but I am thinking about the option to drive it on CZ licence plates forever and keep paying the mandatory insuranace in CZ (as it is cheaper).

Is this possible or am I breaking some local CH law?
I guess for DE or AT citizens will be similar.
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  #118  
Old 17.11.2008, 20:22
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Re: [Import] Bring car to Switzerland?

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Perhaps I missed it, but please help me out.

I am Czech (EU citizen). I have my address in CZ (everybody has to keep an registered address in CZ as long as is CZ citizen) as well as in CH (resident visa in CH).

I brought my car to CH, but I am thinking about the option to drive it on CZ licence plates forever and keep paying the mandatory insuranace in CZ (as it is cheaper).

Is this possible or am I breaking some local CH law?
I guess for DE or AT citizens will be similar.
Yeah, you missed it. If you would have read this thread (and others) you would have seen that you have one year after becoming a resident to register and insure your car in Switzerland.
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  #119  
Old 17.11.2008, 20:29
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Re: [Import] Bring car to Switzerland?

Hi,

I am looking for a garage in either Affoltern am Albis, Zug or Zurich that can perform a "Swiss conformity" test for an imported car. I was told that I needed to go to a garage which is used to perform those tests before applying for Swiss licence plates.

I am therefore desperately looking for an English or French speaking garage

Glin
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  #120  
Old 17.11.2008, 20:55
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Re: [Import] Bring car to Switzerland?

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Hi,

I am looking for a garage in either Affoltern am Albis, Zug or Zurich that can perform a "Swiss conformity" test for an imported car. I was told that I needed to go to a garage which is used to perform those tests before applying for Swiss licence plates.

I am therefore desperately looking for an English or French speaking garage

Glin
You were told wrong. There is no such requirement - of course, it might be in your interest to go down that road but if it's a modern car available in Europe there's probably no need.
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