Selling A Canadian Car In The USA

Last Updated on January 18, 2023 by Leepu Da Maxim

Well, it is possible to sell a Canadian car in the USA but to do so, first, you have to import the car into the USA. moreover, you also have to ensure that the vehicle meets environmental and safety standards before importing the car.

Key Takeaways

Selling A Canadian Car In The USA – Main Tips

Engine Standards
U.S. and Canadian vehicle engine standards are not the same, so a vehicle sold in the U.S. must meet the engine standards.
Necessary ModificationsIf it does not meet the engine standards, some modifications may be incorporated which could cost $5000 or more.
Property TitleThe vehicle to be sold the must-have title to the property
DMV Registration
Any vehicle being sold must be registered with the local department of motor vehicles.
Import TaxesCertain taxes must be paid to import a vehicle. 

How Do I Sell A Canadian Car In The USA?

Many people moving from Canada to the United States decide to settle down for a long period in the United States. Of course in these cases, the users will want to relocate along with their vehicle

 In these cases, these people arriving in the United States may wish to sell their vehicle from Canada in the United States. To do so, they will have to comply with some important steps.

To transfer a car title from Canada to the United States, each person will have to meet more than one requirement. It is necessary to meet safety and environmental standards, clear the car through customs, take care of insuring the vehicle with a U.S. insurance company, and of course, register the vehicle.

1. Environmental Standards

An increasingly important aspect of recent times is the environmental standards implemented in various U.S. states. More and more vehicles need to comply with these environmental standards to avoid fines. The Clean Air Act and the Environmental Protection Agency aim to reduce the number of pollutants produced by each vehicle.

Of course, this is done decisively to reduce air pollution globally. That’s why any vehicle that is transmitted in many places in the United States must comply with these standards.

So, before crossing the border it is necessary to demonstrate that the vehicle meets these standards and complete a certain form from the environmental protection agency. We’ve provided some important tips to verify that a car meets these standards:

1. The Vehicle You Wish to cross into the United States must be identical to the same vehicles that are for sale in this same country. In particular, this is only taken into consideration when the cars have been manufactured up to 2001. Of course, the Environmental Protection Agency has a certain list that includes all identical vehicles.

2. To Easily detect whether a vehicle meets the emissions standards of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, you can look for the label. In general, this is a label that is usually added under the hood of the vehicle. This simple label indicates that the vehicle meets these environmental standards.

3. If A Vehicle is not on the list of identical vehicles and does not have a label, it must have a statement from the U.S. representative of the car manufacturer. Thus, it will be necessary to demonstrate that the vehicle can meet the appropriate standards. Also, it may be necessary to include the vehicle identification number.

Those vehicles that have not been modified and are more than 21 years old will be able to meet the requirements of the environmental protection agency. However, modifications made to a vehicle used by a disabled person are exempt from these requirements. 

2. Safety Standards

All imported vehicles must not only meet environmental standards. Besides, these vehicles must also meet the requirements of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Thus, a set of specific requirements have been developed here that refer to safety standards.

In particular, this is dedicated only to those vehicles that are less than 25 years old when they enter the United States. So, here the vehicle import guidelines of this office for Canada requires the following requirements to be met: 

1. Here again, an original manufacturer’s label is usually incorporated into the automobile. This label is responsible for certifying that the vehicle meets U.S. federal motor vehicle safety standards. In most cases, this label is usually located inside the door next to the driver’s side.

2. It is also necessary to prove that the vehicle meets these safety standards by having a letter from the original manufacturer. So, this is a letter that must incorporate the vehicle identification number as well as an official letterhead from the manufacturer. Sometimes this requirement can be a little difficult to meet.

3. Finally, the vehicle owner is required to fill out an hs7 declaration form from the u.s. department of transportation. With these requirements, it will be more than enough to be able to comply with the safety standards. Also, these safety standards are implemented to decrease the number of traffic accidents.

A vehicle cannot have a salvage title beyond the age of each car. Therefore, all persons must necessarily comply with these requirements and safety standards. 

3. Title Of Ownership

Of course, the owner of the vehicle must have the necessary documentation to prove that he/she is the true owner of the vehicle. In this case, it is a matter of having the original title of the vehicle, an original invoice, a certified copy of the title, a foreign registration, or a bill of sale.

Additionally, it is also important to consider each of the parts that have been added to the vehicle. So, all non-factory modifications must also be demonstrated by the vehicle owner. This requires the sales receipt for each of these parts to complete the proof of ownership of the vehicle.

4. Undercarriage Cleanliness

The undercarriage of the vehicle must be completely clean if the vehicle owner wishes to successfully pass through customs. This is an indispensable requirement established by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Therefore, it is recommended to apply a complete and efficient cleaning of the undercarriage of the car. Also, each of the imported vehicles must be completely free of foreign soil. At least that is what the U.S. Department of Agriculture states.

If someone else is in charge of shipping the car, the cleaning must be done just before entering customs. If you are responsible for crossing the border with your vehicle it is recommended to go through a car wash just before that.

5. Going Through Customs

Once all the above requirements have been met it is necessary to go through customs. Here all persons need to complete the Customs and Border Protection Form 7501. To save a good amount of time at the border, it is recommended to fill out this form in advance. However, this is not entirely necessary.

Some customs officials will help many foreigners to fill out this form. Of course for this, each person must have all documents and requirements in order. For your registration, it is recommended to request a copy of your approved form. This is important if you want to register your car successfully and without problems. 

6. Paying Taxes

If a person can prove that he/she owns a vehicle for one more year no import taxes or duties are due. This is what the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office itself states. On the other hand, some taxes or duties are due when the owner has not owned a car for a year or more.

In this case, the total amount of these taxes and duties may be pre-set for some vehicles. On the other hand, when there is no set value, a 2.5% tax must be paid on the total purchase price of the vehicle. The exact value of the Canadian vehicle is required on the customs form.

7. Registering The Vehicle 

To complete the vehicle registration process, the 7501 form must be approved after a certain data verification procedure. Here, it is also necessary to pay a certain registration fee to the state.

State regulations may vary as well as the amount is not the same for any vehicle. However here it is possible to receive the new license plates the moment you complete this process. The import process ends when the owner receives his plates and finalizes the registration.

Once this last step is completed the owner of a vehicle will have the possibility to sell a Canadian vehicle in the United States. Here, a person can opt for a dealer or a private buyer. When this happens, the title transfer must also be done. The person who chooses a dealer usually does not have to take care of these formalities.