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Taking a UK car to France(7 Posts)
Has anyone any experience of taking their UK car when they go to live in France and going through all the (I'm guessing) paperwork, having the plates changed, etc?
We've been living in the UK, bought a second hand Renault Kangoo here and I'm wondering whether it's worth taking it back when we return to France, or better to buy a car when we get there. It's just that cars seem sooooo expensive in France...
Second hand cars are expensive in France.
The proceedure for getting french plates is pretty simple and costs about 300 if I remember correctly.
You need to get a certificate of conformity from the manufacturer (which should be easy as it is a renault) then get a control technique (MOT). Depending on the car you may have to change out the headlights. For us this was the most expensive bit (500) but some cars can have the lights adjusted without changing the unit.
Then you go to the prefecture with the bits of paper and they will give you a carte gris.
Yes the process is pretty simple though I struggled with the paperwork...my French isn't good enough for car technical data..engine size, emissions etc.
And yes cars are so expensive in France, we are considering buying a second car and will probably go back to the UK to buy one as it's so much cheaper.
But are you moving to France permanently? If so you need to think about what you will do when you want to get rid of your car...nobody will buy a right-hand drive in France! We're only here for another 2 years so can take our car back to the UK.
Thank you so much for this info...I suspect that it will be hassle and a ton of papers, but much cheaper than buying a car over there...EmmaNicole, thanks for raising the point about getting rid of it...I'd thought of putting it in the Petites Annonces of one of the websites for English-speakers in France the day we have to get rid of it, for someone returning to the UK...
It is possible to get lhd cars in the UK. Some are brand new, and sourced from either Holland, Belgium and Germany, so that people don't have to pay the silly high prices for new cars in France. Might be worth a look.
We looked at buying a lhd Hyundai in the UK, but they agents can't supply them, so had a look at car importers. Unfortunately, we had a car to part-ex, so ended up buying from a dealer in France. Cost an extra 8,000, though.
There is also a Lhd car shop in Basingstoke - can do all the paperwork in English and take it with you. We sold our French car there!
If you can't change the headlights with a switch in the care (some more modern cars have this function), then take a look on ebay or elsewhere on the internet. We bought second hand lights from ebay for around £200, would have be double price brand new - I am guessing they are sold by companies who take scrap cars and sell on the re-usable parts.
Yes the "certificat de conformité", have heard from 2 people in the last week who have unwittingly paid up to 150 for this from a garage on the continent, not knowing that you should be able to get this certificate for free from the UK branch of a car manufacturer. VW gave us ours for free.