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Importing R4 - problem with HMRC

bartoni79

Enthusiast
Messages
5
Location
Slough
#1
Hi,
Ive imported a new R4 and as a my previous post mentions some time ago, it was 1989 manufactured but 1990 registered vehicle in Canada. The import agent has entered the paperwork as a 1990 as this was the registration date and I now have a 20% import duty to pay (a difference of nearly £900). I entered the year of manufacture as 1989 in the c384 and the bill of sale also states its 1989. I had a conversation with them stating that this might be an issue but it seems that they forgot. Does anyone know of the best way to resolve this so that I can pay the reduced rate of 5%. The shipper/ import agent isn't particularly helpful and keeps reiterating the title says 1990, to which I've replied, that is because it was registered in Canada in 1990 and a new title will be difficult to get. I only found out this afternoon so will call HMRC tomorrow but i don't have proof its a 1989 vehicle apart from a screenshot of a live chat with Renault along with the VIN number. Renault advise that it will take 6 weeks and £100 to get a Certificate of conformity but i don't know if have the time to wait 6 weeks, plus the warehouse charges £10 a day for car storage. Any information / advice would be gladly received!!
 
Messages
321
#3
Why did you use an agent? The process is fairly straightforward and you would then be dealing with H.M.R.C. directly, instead of at one step removed. I realise it's a little late to reverse things now, but you should be OK once things are explained to them.
 

bartoni79

Enthusiast
Messages
5
Location
Slough
#4
Not sure this will help but the pdf copy of genuine parts book has year of manufacture tied to first chassis number so if yours is lower than the 1990 listing it must be 1989
Brian Whiteside of renault classic car club will assist in these cases for club members
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0ByjyTYVWAjtQaFQtNkpDa0pPWVU/view?usp=drivesdk
Many Thanks for your link!
I've tried to track down my year but matching the VIN on page 5 of the PDF but it doens't match anything. My VIN is VF111280003153XXX. (I substituted the last 3 digits for an X as I'm not sure if its a good idea posting VIN online?). Looking at page 5, I have a R1112 but the serial numbers have a letter in them. My VIN only consists of numbers so it matches none in the diagram. Am i reading it the wrong way?
 

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benchseat

Enthusiast
Messages
276
#5
R1128 is what you are looking for. If the VIN contains the string "112800" then you have a 1108cc car dating after 1981. If you need help to get a proper identification you need not the VIN, but the vehicle number — which will be similar to that on the VIN but should contain additional digits. This number is found on a square plate on the bulkhead (under the bonnet).

There should be two long lines of numbers with Renault lozenges at each end. The second line should start with a letter prefix (in your case probably J, E or G) and the numbers after this are the vehicle serial number. This letter should also appear on the VIN so possibly you have mistranscribed it. With this information it should be no difficulty for Renault or a Classic-Car club to date your vehicle accurately. They will need a legible photo of the square plate.

These details come from the official Renault 4 Parts Book PR 1104 page 01.23 (paper version).

There is only one "real" book about the R4 which contains hard information rather than Gallic fluff, and that is Album Renault 4 by Robert Séjourné. This indicates that model year 1990 for the R1128 had a rearview mirror mounted on the right hand door as well as the normal LHD driver’s mirror. This might enable you to date the vehicle : but "model year", I believe, starts in the previous August (CHECK THIS INFORMATION with experts). So there would be no contradiction in your car being described as "1990" but in fact being manufactured in the previous year.

By the way — forgive my ignorance — why is 1990 so much more expensive of Import Duty than 1989?
 

bartoni79

Enthusiast
Messages
5
Location
Slough
#6
Ah i see. Thanks for your help!
The problem is I don't have the car so I cant find the additional numbers under the bonnet.
Regarding your question, if a car is 30 years old i.e 1989, HMRC charge 5% VAT vs 20% VAT if the car is under 30 years old (1990 and beyond)..
 

angel

Enthusiast
Messages
1,901
Location
Athens, Greece
#7
The serial numbers on the Renault parts book always refer to the oval plate number, not the 17-digit VIN.
 

benchseat

Enthusiast
Messages
276
#8
The plate is square on later models, not oval. My description referred to the similar plate on my own vehicle, which dates from 1985. Unfortunately these do not give the type (e.g. R1123, R1128) quite so prominently. But (i) when dating a car, the oval (square) plate is where to start, (ii) the VIN quoted by "bartoni179" looks as if it might not be quite correct as it doesn’t include a letter prefix. Again, I’m comparing the numbers on my square plate with the VIN shown on my vehicle Registraition Document (V5).
 

Neil

Enthusiast
Messages
258
Location
llangennech
#9
The plate is square on later models, not oval. My description referred to the similar plate on my own vehicle, which dates from 1985. Unfortunately these do not give the type (e.g. R1123, R1128) quite so prominently. But (i) when dating a car, the oval (square) plate is where to start, (ii) the VIN quoted by "bartoni179" looks as if it might not be quite correct as it doesn’t include a letter prefix. Again, I’m comparing the numbers on my square plate with the VIN shown on my vehicle Registraition Document (V5).
The plate is square on later models, not oval. My description referred to the similar plate on my own vehicle, which dates from 1985. Unfortunately these do not give the type (e.g. R1123, R1128) quite so prominently. But (i) when dating a car, the oval (square) plate is where to start, (ii) the VIN quoted by "bartoni179" looks as if it might not be quite correct as it doesn’t include a letter prefix. Again, I’m comparing the numbers on my square plate with the VIN shown on my vehicle Registraition Document (V5).
BEFORE WE GO ANY FURTHER ON THE ABOVE SUBJECT:
WAS A NOVA SUBMITTED WITHIN 14 DAYS OF THIS RENAULT ARRIVING IN THE BRITISH ISLES ??
 
Messages
389
#10
Thought NOVA only applied to cars imported from EU countries?
People get very worried about these, its no problem at all, I have imported and registered several cars over the last few years without problems.
 

Neil

Enthusiast
Messages
258
Location
llangennech
#11
Hiya Stuart,
Good old HMRC. The following extract proves [once again] that THEY have bent-over-backwards to burden our lives with ever increasing layers of bureaucracy !! But how kind of HMRC to declare the NOVA on behalf of non V.A.T. registered companies or individuals importing from outside the EU ....

taken from: https://www.gov.uk/importing-vehicles-into-the-uk/telling-hmrc

Telling HMRC
You have 14 days to tell HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) after you bring a vehicle into the UK permanently. You cannot register the vehicle until you’ve done this.
You may be fined if you’re late telling HMRC.
If your vehicle has an engine below 49cc (or 7.2kw if it’s electric), you can register it without telling HMRC first.
If there’s a no-deal Brexit
You must tell HMRC if you import a vehicle from Ireland to Northern Ireland. You must do this within 14 days of the vehicle arriving in Northern Ireland.
Ask the VAT helpline for a VAT Notification of Vehicle Arrival (NOVA1) form. Do not use the online NOVA service.
If you import a vehicle from the EU
Tell HMRC by using the Notification of Vehicle Arrivals (NOVA) service.
You can use a spreadsheet if you’re a VAT-registered business and you need to use NOVA for lots of vehicles.
Ask the VAT helpline for a VAT NOVA1 form if you’re unable to use the NOVA online service.
If you import a vehicle from outside the EU
How you tell HMRC depends on whether you’re VAT-registered.
If you’re a VAT-registered company
You need to make an import declaration using form C88 (also known as the Single Administrative Document).
Submit the form electronically using the Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) system or the Customs Declaration Service (CDS) system. You can also get an agent such as a freight forwarder to do this for you.
You must then tell HMRC about the imported vehicle by using the NOVA service within 14 days. You can use a spreadsheet if you need to use NOVA for lots of vehicles.
Ask the VAT helpline for a VAT NOVA1 form if you’re unable to use the NOVA online service.
If you’re a non-VAT registered company or private individual
You need to make an import declaration using form C384. Send the completed form to HMRC by email or post.
HMRC CAR team
ecsm.nchcars@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk
HMRC
CAR team
BT Ops Level 8
Dorchester House
52-58 Great Victoria Street
Belfast
BT2 7WF
You can also get an agent such as a freight forwarder to make the declaration for you.
You might qualify for relief from VAT and duty if you’re:
Ask the VAT helpline for a form if you’re unable to use online services.
After you tell HMRC
HMRC will tell you:
  • if you have to pay VAT and duty
  • when your NOVA application has been processed - you cannot register your vehicle with DVLA until it is
If you’re a non-VAT registered company or private individual, HMRC will make a NOVA application for you.
 
Messages
389
#12
The key word here is permanently.
They date the car arrives in the UK and the date it is permanently imported can be very different.
Recently registered a Skoda Estelle that had been here for 3 or 4 years and changed hands at least 3 times!
 

Neil

Enthusiast
Messages
258
Location
llangennech
#13
The key word here is permanently.
They date the car arrives in the UK and the date it is permanently imported can be very different.
Recently registered a Skoda Estelle that had been here for 3 or 4 years and changed hands at least 3 times!
Yes Stuart, you did well.
When I started driving in 1964, I took pride in learning and memorising the rules. It wasn't long before I realised that my "rule-book" was out of date due to the intrusive and unwarranted interference from some power-drunk bureaucratic meddler who knew less about motor vehicles and common-road-sense than a squashed hedgehog!
AND IT IS EVERYWHERE AND EVERYTHING ONE GETS INVOLVED IN.

I recently approached an estate agent to sell some land I own in my village. Because there is a derelict building on the land, (although empty for 12 years) I was forced to pay for an E.P.C. (Energy Performance Certificate £75) or face a £50,000 fine. In fact, the estate agent refused to advertise until the certificate had been generated.
My apologies for going off-topic,
N.
 

edwin

Enthusiast
Messages
221
Location
Lichfield
#15
The key word here is permanently.
They date the car arrives in the UK and the date it is permanently imported can be very different.
Recently registered a Skoda Estelle that had been here for 3 or 4 years and changed hands at least 3 times!
Why?
 
Messages
389
#16
You only have 14 days from importing to sort the NOVA, or you can be fined, I think its something like £5 a day?
So you may have brought it over months ago but you only imported it yesterday for the paperwork...
 
Messages
321
#18
No, why import a Skoda Estelle. Joke.
Careful..... Skodas (even the rear-engined ones!) have a HUGE cult following..... I've owned one or two in the past! Basic, down to earth vehicles, designed for the masses, able to be easily repaired by owners, capable of travelling over rough uneven surfaces... sound familiar..........?
 

edwin

Enthusiast
Messages
221
Location
Lichfield
#19
Actually the Estelle is quite a good car and worthy of more attention, especially the convertible. Talking of over there, its the Velorex that i think is amazing, with a lace on fabric covering. Like a Vickers Wellington for road use. And then there is my Renault 4tl...
 

laxeian

Enthusiast
Messages
236
Location
Galicia
#20
Used to work with a guy that went from owning old Jags to owning a new Estelle coupe, deliverd with a factory staged engine ( rally spec),fun car. Car was destroyed whilst changing a flat by a lorry in the French Alps...
 
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