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Does anyone know how simple or difficult it would be to import a right hand drive Japanese cube to the U.S.?

My uncle in Japan is planning on buying a new car, and he asked if he could just ship his 3 gen. cube to me.

On his side (Japan) he claims it is really simple to ship it, but was wondering can I register it in the U.S. to be a daily driver?
 

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im not sure but i heard its alot. the cube is nothing crazy so registering it might not be that much but to import a whole car that many cost you half of what a cube already cost. just from what i heard
 

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here are the basic steps to import from Japan

1. Choose the car you want to purchase.
2. Select an export agent in Japan. (If buying from an auction house they may have their own export agent)
3. Get all docs from the shipper.
4. After arrival the car will need to go through quarantine. You can then collect the car with your shipping docs
5. Comply the car for road use. This will require some modifications.
6. Tow the car to be inspected at a transport department. They will check for mod plates etc.
7. Register the car.
8. Go and show your friends your new ride!

A few Tips
· Learn as much as you can before purchasing a car.
· Take care of the tariff, it can add up to a lot due to the value of a car.
· You NEED to have a contract with a RI (registered importer) that will perform the needed modifications PRIOR to shipping the vehicle!

Keep in mind that your uncle can't directly ship to you, it has to go through a licensed exporter. The car will have to be modified to meet the requirements of the US government as well as your local DOT before it leaves Japan. You also need to find out what tariff’s and taxes apply, it could be quite costly.

But it can be done!! - Dan
 

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exactly square1 IMO defeats the purpose unless you truly truly want RHD and are willing to pay for it.....brother works for BMW in Germany and could get me a hook up over there only.....damn global companies.....by the time we figured tariff and taxes that aren't added on like they are here and DOT conversion....I could just buy one here and be done with it....you could sneak it through canada (cheaper) but would have a hard time registering it I figure.
 

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All the supporting documents will be in Japanese. 8)

Catalictic converter will be the first modification.

If you know someone in the military thay have done this. I shipped my mustang to Puerto Rico (its a US territory but compleatly different laws) with no problems.

The wacky part is it has to be registerd in both places and insured in both too, before shipment.

If the vehicle is not 100% paid for the bank wont let it go either. I had to get a waiver (due to good credit) and provide that to the shipper.

During shipment alot of vehicles get molested too. Horror stories on this, again talk to a military person.
 

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killercube said:
you could sneak it through canada (cheaper) but would have a hard time registering it I figure.
I've actually heard of people doing this but it's not without it's own set of issues. It's pretty easy registering a car in the US from Canada. But bringing in one from another country through Canada would require it to be registered in Canada first. So here again is the cost of taxes, tariff's, or whatever Canada has for their requirements, then to do it all over again in the US. That's a lot of costs and trouble for a Cube, or any entry level car for that matter. For what it would cost whichever way one chooses, he / she could probably buy a more expensive car right here at home. But then again, if owning a RH drive Cube is really important then it may justify the cost. - Dan
 
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