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  #1  
Old 03-15-2000, 01:55 PM
emb3.2
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i would like to bring a euro spec 500e in to the u.s. does any what the differences are or if it can not be brought in at all.

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  #2  
Old 03-15-2000, 02:27 PM
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We brought in around thirty cars in the mid eighties and learned a lot getting them to pash the FTP Federal Test Procedure.

The whole process stopped for two reasons: #1 the dollar to mark rate changed drastically and #2 the EPA changed their minds (with great proding from the manufacturers). It seemed that allowing a car to pass for just one test was an advantage over what the manufacturers had to do (build a system with min failure rates for 50k miles).

The new rules state that a importer (now classified as a manufacturer) must do a version study and certify cars by class. This pretty much filled what was left of the industry as there is no way to do this for just one car. There may still be someone doing it as I have seen some late model euro cars. I sure would advise against it. The cars have little or no value here, often can't be insured and a dealer won't talk about a trade. They can't be sold at (most)auctions.

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Steve Brotherton
Owner 24 bay BSC
Bosch Master, ASE master L1
26 years MB technician
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  #3  
Old 03-15-2000, 02:39 PM
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yal yal is offline
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We have talked about this do a search on this forum for "importing an mb from germany" you will get some advice there from me and some other people.

There are no real differences as far as road wordeness is concerned (there use to be pre-1985 but not now). Euro cars tend to have stiffer suspensions and are sometimes tweaked differently there. The headlights are not sealed beams and the side indicators do not double as parking lights like the US models. You would have to run into a very very very very anal retentive cop or inspection officer for those to be a problem.

My advice is to do your homework on your local laws at your DMV and check out the NHTSB or NTSB website for directions. As I am in NY like you I can tell you there really isn't a problem. When you get your car do not go to the dealer on Northern Blvd for service...they seem to have a problem with grey market vehicles ...GOOD LUCK

yal
88 230E (W124)

[This message has been edited by yal (edited 03-15-2000).]
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Old 03-15-2000, 02:50 PM
jsr
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I doubt this applies to a 500E, but they did just recently change the rules on importing cars.

Last fall in an AutoWeek they mentioned that now people (no companies) can import cars that "have significant historical or technical importance." What they seemed to mean by this is cars that either are rare sports cars or ones that may of played a part in history like being formerly owned by the ruler of a country. For the sports cars there are certain limitations though, most importantly probably (and what cuts an 500E out) is that it canít be a model that was imported or very similar to one imported. Even a different engine didnít seem to count, it has to be a completely different car. Secondly, there was a limitation on how many miles you could drive it in a year. I believe it was something like 2000 miles, they feel that is enough to allow you to drive it to car shows and other events (it is not supposed to be a daily driver). They also have the right to inspect your odometer at any time to make sure you are not driving it more then the limit.

hmm, now if I could just come up with the $1.4 million so I can import a CLK-GTR...
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Old 03-15-2000, 05:30 PM
emb3.2
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thank you all for your advice i was asking because the price of german 500e is much less than a u.s. spec . I have been in touch with an importer and they told me all they may need is letter from MBNA stating that the car basicly conforms aside from a few minor tweeks. I have contacted MBNA and so far they have no idea what I'm asking for. Possibly because the car can not be brought in with out heavy mods. thank you Eric
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Old 03-16-2000, 03:31 PM
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Before I purchased my US spec '92 500E I looked into importing a 500E from Germany. With a price of between $10k-18K for a 500E in Germany it certainly seemed worth it. A ship from Bremen with insurance is less than $1000.

Both MB and BMW have made it clear that they will not provide a letter stating that both US and Euro cars are the same.

I spoke to some Importers and the cheapest "conversion" quote I could get was $8000!

So it just wasn't worth the headache and subsequent lower resale value so I told my cheapside to take a jump and paid $30k for an immaculate black '92 500E with 59K miles and full history. Oh, yes and its brilliant!

David Hendy
PS There is a 100k mile car for sale in Pa for $25K if you are interested.
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Old 03-16-2000, 11:06 PM
emb3.2
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david ,thanks for the info I saw the same posible cheep german spec cars, but with 8k in mods I'll just make do with my '93 300e 3.2 for now. Thanks to everyone for their input. Mercedes Shop is with out question the most valuable source of info on M-Bs on the net today.
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  #8  
Old 03-16-2000, 11:36 PM
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emb:


Its just not worth it to bring in a car from Germany, theres so much work to be done on the car, taxes, etc...I've tried to bring in cars from Germany and it just hasnt worked. Like you said, the cars are substantially cheaper in Germany...if your ever in the city of Boblingen (umlaut over "o" pronounced BoobLINGen), head MB factory, the cars are dirt cheap. You can purchase and 96 or 97 S class for about 15 grand. But again, with all the conversion, shipping, taxes, re-sale value of a euro spec, its just better off to buy it here.

Agron
1989 300E
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  #9  
Old 03-22-2000, 12:26 PM
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Article at MSN: http://underwire.msn.com/underwire/reallife/Lu/81lucille.asp
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