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Exporting to the US

When planning to ship a vehicle to the USA from the UK, it can be quite a daunting task if you are unaware of certain procedures.  The most important part of this is making sure that your vehicle is eligible to be exported into the country.  If you find out that your vehicle is eligible to be exported, but it does not comply with the countries emission standards, you will have to find out what modification your vehicle requires before it can be shipped.

The USA has a strict policy when it comes to the importation of vehicles manufactured outside of the U.S, or for vehicles that don’t conform to the USA Safety and Emission Standards.  These regulations are all dependant on the age of the vehicle that you are planning on shipping to the U.S.  While the safety regulations must be met by all vehicles under 25 years old, any vehicle over the age of 25 can qualify for exemption from these regulations.  The reasoning behind this is due to their date of manufacture predating the applicable Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS).  You will however need to make sure that you are able to provide documentary evidence to prove the age of your vehicle, if it is not identifiable on a permanently fixed plate on your vehicle.  Acceptable documentation for this would include; the vehicles V5C (registration document) or an original sale invoice for the vehicle showing the date that the vehicle was sold.

There are some other circumstances that let you bypass this regulation in addition to the age of your vehicle, for instance vehicle’s being imported by non-residents for a temporary period of time do not need to comply with the USA Safety and Emission Regulation set in place.

If you are planning on exporting a vehicle that is less than 25 years old you will have to make sure that it complies with the U.S Safety and U.S Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) emission standards.

Aside from the age of your vehicle and whether it meets the all of the emission standards set in place, you will have to make sure that your vehicle meets the requirements set out by the U.S Department of Agriculture (USDA), which states that your vehicle will have to be fully cleaned to avoid the potential importation of harmful pests and contamination.  With this you are highly advised to clean your vehicle before shipping it, making sure you pay extra attention to hard to reach areas such as; wheel arches, the undercarriage of the vehicle, as well as the engine bay and the cooling fans.  If your vehicle is found to be a contaminant once it reaches the country you will be required to have your vehicle steam cleaned and fumigated at your own expense.

If you require any additional information about exporting your vehicle to the USA, or about anything else to do with vehicle shipment, you can contact us and one of our friendly members of staff will be happy to help you.

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