Buying a car is always a question of price. Isn’t the dream car cheaper somewhere in times of internationalization? Often yes. Because Germany is an expensive place, even when it comes to car prices. These tips will give you a good overview of Shipping a Car to Germany.
Why you can save on imports
A look across national borders is often worthwhile when buying a car, as it can sometimes save you real money. Some car models are much cheaper to buy abroad than here – even those that were produced in Germany. The latter is therefore also called reimport. The Netherlands, Denmark, Finland, Greece, Spain, and Portugal are good buying countries for vehicles. As a German, you do not have to pay the high taxes and duties that are available for locals in many EU countries when buying.
Check approval and costs
Before importing or reimporting, you should make sure that the car is approved in Germany. For this, you need all relevant documents from the exporter or seller at the approval authority. In addition, you should calculate which additional costs you will face. These include the transfer costs (at least € 400), VAT if applicable and other administrative fees. If possible, ask insiders for tips and experience.
Examine the equipment
Different countries, different customs, and preferences. This is particularly evident in the equipment. The basic equipment often differs from country to country and different extras are often preferred. For foreign cars, therefore, pay attention to engine performance, emissions, basic equipment, and special equipment. Also note that individual models may need to be technically converted slightly to obtain German approval, for example, if they come from the USA.
On the safe side with the purchase contract
Did you find your dream car and do you agree with the seller? The next step is the purchase contract: Make sure that the contract contains the price, equipment details, and the concrete handover date. With a new car, you should also make sure that the term “new vehicle” is explicitly mentioned. If you are linguistically insecure, you should have the contract translated. Important: Pay only when you have the contract, vehicle documents, and ignition key in your hands and avoid cash transfers via service providers.
Important documents when handing over
After the contract is signed, the vehicle is handed over. As a buyer, you should in any case receive the invoice or contract as well as the original registration certificates part 1 and part 2, and all ignition keys. Also request the so-called Certificate of Conformity, or CoC for short. It is a certificate that the vehicle complies with the European standard and may be registered. If the car does not have a CoC, a complex full acceptance test is due in Germany. Also insist that the guarantee documents, i.e. service booklet and guarantee card, are stamped and provided with the chassis number and delivery date. Good to know: If the manufacturer still has a manufacturer’s guarantee, every dealer in Europe has to provide guarantee services.