Smart Car of America Forum banner
1 - 20 of 40 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
120 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am having great difficulty finding a 2017 453 manual with options in America. I was wondering if anyone ever bought overseas and imported and if so, what was the process and cost? Did modifications need to be made for emissions?
 

·
Super Moderator
MY08 cabrio MY09 Brabus MY21 Bolt
Joined
·
8,096 Posts
Many mods required render this MISSION IMPOSSIBLE - unless you have DEEP, VERY DEEP pocket$…
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,543 Posts
Ok- good to know. I mean, if it is like 5k, not a huge deal and may be worth it. If like 10k, nah.
European-spec vehicles must ship through a stateside certified independent commercial importer. A list is available from the EPA.

This, however, can be an expensive process because the vehicle must also conform to EPA and DOT safety requirements and would be subject to conversion to US specification at an EPA accredited Conversion Station. This process is not only costly$$$$ but could take 3-6 months to complete.
Good Luck
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
120 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Here’s 4 manual transmission one. US spec. For the extra $5k, Just add your the options you want.
Looks like I will just keep looking for one that already has the factory options. If I can find a 2017 manual, I would add the stuff I want. I have yet to find a 2017 manual—I have only seen one.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
83 Posts
I own one of the last UK 453 petrol Cabrio's made, a 1.0... 5 speed manual, and I am curious what is the extra safety, and differences you guys get on a USA spec'ed 453?

I can see from Smart leaflets that you get six airbags, and we just get four. Anything else?

If its down to compliance paperwork meeting USA standards, I can see the problem, but physically there should not be that much of a difference between a LHD European car and a USA car.

PS....I have seen the opposite situation, where I wanted a new Honda Civic Coupe MK1, only made in Ohio USA to Japanese quality control, and importing them via Honda USA to Honda Europe to the UK was held up for 6 months with meeting European compliance. It took me a year on the waiting list till I got the car. Worth the wait, It was so reliable, I had it for 10 years. My only American made car LOL :D

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
325 Posts
US spec cars have different emission controls, DOT (Dept. of Transportation) glass, tailamp lenses, and headlamps. There are also side guard beams installed in the doors and side marker lights. The fuel system evaporative control is also different, I think.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,731 Posts
And U.S. spec 453s have 8 air bags. I bought Euro spec headlights for my 1990 Mercedes 300E to get rid of those awful, ugly U.S. spec ones used at the time. Some of the regulation differences just don’t make sense.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
120 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
The question remains, did they even make manual coupe in 2017 and if so, how many? I have literally seen one.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,543 Posts
The question remains, did they even make manual coupe in 2017 and if so, how many? I have literally seen one.
If you have literally seen one. Then you have answered the first part of your question. That would be yes. The second part is going to be harder.
Good luck
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
120 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks- I think a unicorn would be easier to locate.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
17,719 Posts
It is possible to do what you're looking to do, but you're looking in the wrong place. You aren't going to import a 453 from Europe anytime soon unless you have income like Jeff Bezos.

However, you can import a car from Canada! U.S. importation law has a "substantially similar" clause that allows you to import a car that's younger than 25 years old so long as it has the same equipment as the same make and model already sold here. Cars from Canada generally meet this clause because the country's car safety and emissions regulations are similar to ours. This exclusion was designed so that Canadian citizens could move to the U.S. and take their cars with them.

However, everyone from dealerships and regular people use the clause to buy cars from Canada. Most recently, some U.S. dealerships were found to be taking advantage of exchange rates by buying Audi RS6 Avants in Canada and flipping them for extra profit here.

Now, before you go off onto the Canadian equivalent of Craigslist, there is a caveat. Canadian VINs often don't show up in U.S. DMV systems and may not show up in the system of an auto parts store.

And before you pull the trigger on a Canadian car, contact an import broker here in the States. They'll guide you through the process. I had a lawyer assist me with my recent car imports. lol
 

·
Super Moderator
MY08 cabrio MY09 Brabus MY21 Bolt
Joined
·
8,096 Posts
COVID-19 rules may complicate border crossings and such?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
120 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Well- this all sounds too complicated and not worth it. I will just keep looking in the States. Thank you to all that replied.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
17,719 Posts
COVID-19 rules may complicate border crossings and such?
Yep. You'll likely be stuck depending on shipping, which is surprisingly expensive, even for a smart!
 
1 - 20 of 40 Posts
Top