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Importing my TR6

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 22/03/2019 at 20:34, britsportscar@gmail.com said:

I have recently returned to the UK , and still have my TR6 in storage in Florida.  I bought it in Canada  around 2005 then moved to Florida in 2010 where I had it titled.  Has anyone any recommendations as to how best to bring it back to the UK ?

It's been some time since I last brought a car in from the States but the cheapest way was to have the car taken to a RoRo (Roll-on Roll-off) port.  An internet search will find you companies that operate from Jacksonville or Brunswick rather than from New York or Boston.  

However please note ; the rules were that the car had to be driven onto the ship (like a huge ferry) ..even if that were only at 5mph. (but often cars have to be towed off the ferry ship because they wouldn't start).   The other important restriction was that no parts or anything not belonging to the vehicle were to be transported within it.    This ruling was because at one time dealers would buy an old van and pack it with engines and the like, rather than crating them up and shipping them separately.  But of course when a van door's broke open during a storm, these heavy lumps crashing around caused havoc among some very nice cars.!  Insurance claims and health n' safety were not impressed.   So nothing but what you'd normally have in the car when driving locally around.  Anything else is not allowed, not insured, not open to discussion, and easy pickings for dock workers.

The alternative, and in particular for very expensive or non-running cars with a pile of bits is to put it into a container. There are companies who 'consolidate' your bits into a larger container, so yours & five other cars might be packed into a 40ft container. This of course needs securely packing (done by the consolidator, not you),  but is then only handled once on and once off the container ship, so costs are reasonable and shared between various owners. A container usually takes longer because of the packing and shipping / customs paperwork.  It may be an option if you have valuable spare parts and/or household bits to ship as well, or if you can link in with someone else shipping at the same time from the same place.   

Whichever route you choose, the shipping agents will handle the paperwork. There are companies which also handle the customs paperwork, but I've done this myself because ; the customs guys are decent to deal with and help you with any questions, and that a British-made classic car or motorcycle was charged no VAT and a nominal fixed rate for import duty.   EDIT :  I've just phoned a shipping company and they say it's 5% VAT and no import duty.. so I must have remembered wrong.   The 5% VAT is charged on the value of the car + the cost of shipping freight (not overland transport).  Then there's usually a fixed administration rate to pay to the company doing the packing and handling the consolidation (this is not the same company who actually owns the ships / does the shipping).

The company I last used, to bring a Norton Commando back in 2011, was Schumacher Cargo Ltd, who have an agent here in Needham Market, Suffolk.  Ian is the chap to speak to and his number is 01449 723576 or email < Ian@ScLUK.org >   Perhaps you might mention my name ( Peter ) to him as  I'm presently considering buying a non running car, in bits, with its engine apart, and with a spare chassis from Arkansas.  I may well have to have the engine packed into a crates attached to a pallet, with all the loose bits of trim inside the car.  These would then need to be road transported to their US depot, for consolidating into a container, which would then be shipped from Huston, Tx.

But I'd certainly be glad to hear of a cheaper way to get car in bits and spare chassis back from Arkansas USA  to Felixstowe, UK. ?  


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