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Coming to USA: should I sell my bike or bring it over?

883 Views 4 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  meese
Hi all,

long time I don't post here... but I guess I'll be starting over again, as I'm due to come to USA (New Jersey) from January 2013 for a few years (at least 2-3, maybe more) :cool:

So... what should I do with my LT?

I bought it 4 years ago, when it only had 10,000Km and was in nearly mint condition... it's now 6 years old and has 60,000Km, carefully owned and driven and always serviced yearly at the local BMW dealer. It's really good looking, I added a few vaulable accessories (like the Navigation system, a fully-integrated intercom/phone/iPod system from Autocom, the Xenon headlight, a wonderful V-Stream windscreen). To cut it short, it still has a good value if I sell it now to get a new bike when I'm in the U.S.
I was thinking to service it, change the brakes, fluids and tyres, and put it on sale. And then get a GTL when I'm in USA.

If I'm not selling it and leaving it in Europe, I will hardly drive it more than once per year, it will get old and lose value, so I'm not planning to leave it there just standing. I'd rather give it / sell it to another KLT lover who can make good use of it.

Or, as third option suggested by my KLT friends in Italy, I can ship it to USA and use it there: would you ever consider an option like this, if you were me? Anyone has an idea of the cost associated, inlcuding shipping, any needed conversion/nationalisation/registration, any local tax needed, usage fees and so on?

I'm really un-decided, I like the GTL but somehow the idea of leaving the luxury of the KLT forever... is keeping me from selling it.
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Hi, Corrado.

I faced the same question with my '99 LT when our 4-year stay in Wales was coming to an end.

Basically, you can do it either way, but the easiest and cheapest solution would be to sell your bike and buy another one over here. I figured out that after selling my '99 in the UK and buying a new '02 LT in the US with all the current discounts and promotions, it came out just about even. Except that I ended up with a 3-year newer bike that was already legalized for the US.

There are places that can ship your bike over (we had a K100LT shipped from the US to the UK), and you know your own bike well. But the customs importation process was difficult and expensive, and you're really only allowed a temporary 6-month permit so they would frown on a stay of several years.

Another advantage to selling yours there and then buying here is that you could pick up a GTL, or just find a lightly used LT and save even more cash. For that, you just need to do some test rides, which you can do easily enough over there before you move. That alone may seal the deal, if you decide that you really like the GTL.
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The only time I've been without a bike in the last 30 years is when we moved back to the States from the UK.

We were too busy getting moved, looking at houses, buying furniture, and generally getting settled to worry about bikes. After three months I said screw it, walked into dealer, handed them my driver's license and a credit card, and rode out.

I won't ever let it go that long again . . .
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