Selling a US BMW to a Canadian? - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 18 Old Mar 25th, 2008, 8:54 pm Thread Starter
 
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Smile Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

Some riders from British Columbia and Alberta are interested in buying my Washington state registered 2000 LT. I need to know what documentation or forms are necessary for me to provide to the purchaser in order for them to have a smooth transition through Canadian customs. I hope there are some riders out there that have experience in international bike sales. I am very excited about replacing the LT with a GSA and want to be prepared when I receive "the offer I can't refuse". Looking forward to playing in the dirt!
Terry
Bellingham, WA
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post #2 of 18 Old Mar 25th, 2008, 11:34 pm
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Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

All you have to do is give them the title and bill of sale. It's their responsibility to get the recall letter (if needed) and any other paperwork the Canadian Government may want.

I just sold a used GT to a fella from BC...

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post #3 of 18 Old Mar 25th, 2008, 11:36 pm
 
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Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

Terry, I've brought a couple of motorcycles from the U.S. into Canada, and it works quite well. The same procedure applies to all road registered vehicles of any description. Where you can help is to provide a letter from the manufacturer describing all, if any, open service recalls. BMW, till recently provided this letter free of charge, but I hear now they grab about $500 bucks from the new owner ... a sleazy cash grab, if you ask me. Also, a copy of a clear owner's title will be required. The rest is up to the new owner once in Canada, such as an inspection to ensure compliance with emissions, kilometre sticker on the mileage speedo face, etc.
Don 't be afraid of it.
Harleyhoover
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post #4 of 18 Old Mar 26th, 2008, 7:06 am
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Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

The seller of my bike also obtained a temporary trip permit for me as I had out of country plates attached. My insurance company needed the VIN number prior to me riding to insure it. Good luck.

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post #5 of 18 Old Mar 26th, 2008, 10:36 am Thread Starter
 
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Thumbs up Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

Hey Ron, Harleyhoover and Ted,
Thank you for your invaluable assistance. Nothing like "been there done that" experience when it comes to dealing with bureaucratic paper mazes.
Terry
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post #6 of 18 Old Mar 26th, 2008, 12:48 pm
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Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

Be very careful - especially your buyer. I just helped a friend sell an older Cessna 182 to a Canadian citizen, and you can't believe the amount of paperwork and confusion on both sides of the border. It was as though no one has ever done this before.
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post #7 of 18 Old Mar 26th, 2008, 10:39 pm Thread Starter
 
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Red face Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

Thanks for the heads up Niel. I called to Ride West BMW in Seattle this AM. Leiv Ellingsen, the salesman there, told me that the name of this letter is called a "Recall Clearance Letter". He said that the Canadian buyer has to go to a Canadian BMW dealer to obtain one of these documents. He said that since the Canadian is buying a used bike from a private owner "there should be no problems". I'll believe that only if and when this sale actually happens. My limited experience has found that border customs regulations are open to a wide array of interpretations often determined by the mood of the agent holding the documents in hand. Again thanks alot to all of you for your help.
Terry
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post #8 of 18 Old Mar 29th, 2008, 6:54 am
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Smile Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

I am a Canadian who purchased my 05' LT on e-bay in Tampa Bay, Fla. in May/07. Saved $$$. I drove home on the 30 day temp. Fla. permit. No issues at the border as long as U.S. Customs had the original title for min. 72 hrs. prior to crossing. (photocopies not accepted)
The R.I.V. (registrar of imported vehicles) required I produce a recall letter. I requested the letter from my dealer who put me on to BMW Canada, who wanted $500.00 (ouch!) They cited admin fees to query U.S. databases... I contacted B.M.W. Motorcycles of Tampa, Fla. who were more than willing to help and provided it free of charge... in 20 minutes! It worked like a charm and the $500.00 is still in my pocket. (lol)
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post #9 of 18 Old Mar 29th, 2008, 9:39 am Thread Starter
 
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Unhappy Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

Here is the latest info that I got regarding the Recall Clearance Letter.
I contacted the salesman at Ride West. He said, "last year it was possible for Ride West and other dealers to provide this letter, but about 6 months ago they got a stern letter from corporate BMW stating that they were not to do so any longer. It is the responsibility of the Canadian BMW dealers to do this." So I called BMW corporate customer relations. I guy named Casey told me the same thing and that only Canadian dealerships can do a safety clearance inspection and check for proper VIN tags. So that's what I've been told. Sounds to me like now there is no way that Canadian BMW buyers can get around paying an additional "$500 import tax" to BMW dealers.
Terry
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post #10 of 18 Old Mar 30th, 2008, 11:50 am
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Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Route66
Some riders from British Columbia and Alberta are interested in buying my Washington state registered 2000 LT. I need to know what documentation or forms are necessary for me to provide to the purchaser in order for them to have a smooth transition through Canadian customs. I hope there are some riders out there that have experience in international bike sales. I am very excited about replacing the LT with a GSA and want to be prepared when I receive "the offer I can't refuse". Looking forward to playing in the dirt!
Terry
Bellingham, WA
Do you have a buyer for your bike yet as I AM LOOKING FOR ONE MYSELF.If you do not have a definite buyer can you send me price,pictures and info on the bike too.Also what is the difference in a BMW K1200LT and a K1200LTC.....PAT
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post #11 of 18 Old Apr 5th, 2008, 10:40 am Thread Starter
 
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Red face Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

Here is the response my Canadian buyer got from BMW Canada in regards to bringing the LT into Canada:
Thank you for contacting BMW Canada.

Please accept this as confirmation that your BMW Motorcycle will not require a Letter of Admissibly to be presented to a Canada Border Services Agency officer before the vehicle can enter into Canada.

Once the vehicle is here in Canada, you should make an appointment at a BMW Retailer in order to request a Recall Clearance letter. The Retailer will conduct a visual inspection of the vehicle to ensure all VIN plates are intact and as well obtain a Car Fax report to check the vehicle's history. The Retailer will check the recall history and complete any recalls that are required. BMW Group Canada will only issue an official recall clearance letter once the required daytime running lamp retrofit work has been completed and documented by an authorized Canadian BMW Retailer. Once the process has been completed, the Recall Compliance Letter will be issued for a fee of $500 plus tax. Please note that the approximate timeframe for obtaining this letter is three to four weeks.

You should also be aware of the importation duties involved when importing a US vehicle to Canada and the Registrar of Imported Vehicles (1-888-848-8240) can confirm these details.

We hope this provides clarification to your inquiry and if you have any further questions, please don't hesitate to contact us at 1-800-567-2691 or by email to [email protected]

Sincerely,
BMW Canada
I sent the buyer a link to www.run-n-lites.com so he could save some $$ by doing the running lights himself. Seems like an odd nit-picking item to require for the LT. I added PIAA lights to really increase visibility.
Terry
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post #12 of 18 Old Apr 5th, 2008, 6:28 pm
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Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

Do not be suckered by this! Daytime running lights are for CARS! The LT already has them. The federal inspection is done by Canadian Tire - no need to visit the stealers here at all. The recall letter is absolutely needed and the 500 bucks is pure BS on the part of BMW Canada who is trying to protect exhorbitant mark-ups here. FYI, the list for a new 2008 LT is 29K vs 22 in the US - this with the dollars on par - see the issue?

so, pay the 500 bucks and enjoy the ride and the savings or get the letter from a US dealer and screw BMW Can - your choice
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post #13 of 18 Old Apr 6th, 2008, 4:43 pm
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Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bapper
BMW Canada, who wanted $500.00 (ouch!) They cited admin fees to query U.S. databases... I contacted B.M.W. Motorcycles of Tampa, Fla. who were more than willing to help and provided it free of charge... in 20 minutes! It worked like a charm and the $500.00 is still in my pocket. (lol)
I had a similar experience with BMW of Daytona ... in fact, at the time (March 2007) I was told by the local Canadian BMW Dealer that it was not possible for them to provide the information on a US Bike.

Clearly they've found a way to do it -- and it has resulted in the manufacturer providing some limited protection to Cdn Dealers.

I suggest that the recall data be obtained by the US Vendor prior to completing the sale. As outlined on the RIV.ca site, it simply confirms that there are no outstanding recalls on the vehicle. I suspect a vendor's local US Dealer would be able to get that to them for nothing ... or very close to it.

For a US dealer it's a simple as keying in the Bike's VIN and printing out the resulting screen -- then stamping it with a dealer stamp or printing it on letterhead. Have seen it done at both Honda and BMW dealers in the US.

Still some pricing adjustments required ($ near-parity) on big ticket items including cars and bikes. Meanwhile, Canadians will continue to express their view on the price differences with the purchase behaviour ....... to the dismay of Canadian dealers I suspect.
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post #14 of 18 Old Apr 7th, 2008, 10:03 am Thread Starter
 
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Red face Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

Nope,
As I stated in a previous post, the Canadian buyer must go to a Canadian BMW dealer. I and the Canadian buyer have been told this from
BMW Canada, the Canadian border regulators and by Washinghton and Idaho BMW dealers. What used to work in the past no longer works now. BMW is the only dealer who does this. The buyer must pay a Canadian BMW dealer to do this "inspection".
Terry
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post #15 of 18 Old Apr 8th, 2008, 1:32 pm
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Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

sucks to be us, I guess. Another reason to justify the class action suit that some Ontario car guys have launched against ME and BMW.

We unfortunately have become used to this style of business practice from some big companies - doesn't make it more palatable tho.

G
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post #16 of 18 Old May 2nd, 2008, 4:46 am
 
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Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

I recently bought a K1100LT, and asked the seller to get the recall letter from his local dealer prior to my receiving the bike, which he did.
This worked around the problem of the dealers being told they could not issue recall letters to Canadians; I will be taking it home to Victoria soon, so I guess I will see if the letter is accepted. It is a genuine BMW dealer letter, so I don't see how they can refuse it.

Glenn
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post #17 of 18 Old May 2nd, 2008, 8:59 am
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Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ted Shred
All you have to do is give them the title and bill of sale. It's their responsibility to get the recall letter (if needed) and any other paperwork the Canadian Government may want.

I just sold a used GT to a fella from BC...
I recently bought a 2000LT in NH. All I needed from the seller was the Title and Bill of Sale which was presented to US Customs 72 hrs before I could take it across the border. In return I paid the seller by certified cheque and was off to Canada with my Bike. All a person needs at the Canadian border is a copy of the Title and Bill of Sale and paper work stamped by US Customs. The remaining paper work is the responsibility of the buyer and has to be presented to Canadian Tire before the bike can be inspected and finally registered in Canada.

It was really a painless transaction and went quite smoothly. If the seller could get a copy of the recall letter from a dealer in the US I'm sure the Canadian buyer would be quite appreciative.

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post #18 of 18 Old Jun 14th, 2008, 8:35 pm
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Unhappy Re: Selling a US BMW to a Canadian?

I am in the process of purchasing a 2006 K1200LT from a private owner in Washington and have encountered the same thing regarding the recall letter.
I have been told that some US dealers if asked for a printout showing "no open campaigns" will suffice as the recall letter, however it should show the VIN number. This is an internal document. BMW in their wisdom should remember that all customers inclluding those wishing
to import a bike from the USA are a BMW customer and should be treated like one, not gouged as their first experience dealing with Corporate BMW. A fee of $50-$100.00 would be quite acceptable, but don't try to fleece a new customer right off the bat.
Jim
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