Project Description

Importing Vehicles

Everything you need to know on importing self-propelled vehicles; cars, trucks, tractors, buses, construction and/or agricultural equipment etc.

What is required to Import a Vehicle?

Cars, trucks, tractors, buses, construction or agricultural equipment, etc. require a minimum of 72 business hours advance electronic notice to be filed via a Customs Broker, before the specific importation date, with U.S. Customs and Border Protection using the Automated Export System (AES).

However, keep in mind that importers are required to submit their documentation to their Customs Broker a minimum of 96 business hours before the specific importation date to ensure their Customs Broker has an acceptable window of time to submit the correct data to meet the required minimum 72 business hours filing prior to importation.

Cost is approximately $75.00 CAD per vehicle for importers (may be subject to change).

To file on your behalf GHY requires both the Power of Attorney (issued once) and an application form (for each vehicle imported) found below.

Canadian Requirements

  • Vehicle must be permitted into Canada (see list here).
  • Vehicle documentation must be submitted to US Customs 72 business hours before it arrives.
  • Reporting regulations change depending on where the goods enter Canada. Be sure to check out the area-specific regulations wherever you plan to cross.
  • When crossing the border, the vehicle must be presented to U.S. Customs during regular business hours Monday to Friday.

U.S. Requirements

  • Certain vehicles may require assistance of Registered Importer.
  • Non-Conforming engines must be put into bond through an Independent Commercial Importer.
  • All imported vehicles must be checked for outstanding recalls.

Canada Customs Charges

  • Vehicles with air conditioning are subject to excise tax of $100.00.
  • Sales Tax:
    • GST (5%) – Payable at the border
    • PST (7%) – For personal use vehicles (payable at time of licensing & insurance)
  • Excise Tax: calculated based on a weighted average fuel consumption in accordance with information published by the Government of Canada under the EnerGuide mark.The following rates will apply:At least 13 but less than 14 litres per 100 kilometres: $1,000
    At least 14 but less than 15 litres per 100 kilometres: $2,000
    At least 15 but less than 16 litres per 100 kilometres: $3,000

    16 or more litres per 100 kilometres: $4,000

    Note: Average fuel consumption rating based on combined 55 per cent city / 45 per cent highway. Figures can be obtained from the Fuel Consumption Guides available at Natural Resources Canada.

  • Duty: Free if manufactured in USA & applicable USMCA/CUSMA supplied otherwise 6.1% of vehicle value.
  • RIV Fees apply at time of this posting (up to date fee info available from the Registrar of Imported Vehicles).

U.S. Customs Charges

  • Duty-Free if manufactured in Canada or Mexico with appropriate NAFTA Certificate or Origin. Otherwise, duty will apply.

Canadian Document Requirements

  1. Bill of Sale
  2. Original Certificate of Title
  3. Last copy of registration
  4. USMCA/CUSMA Certificate of Origin (if applicable)
  5. Letter of Gifting with Letter of Appraisal (if applicable)

  6. Form 1 – Submitted to RIV
  7. Form 2 – Received in mail and required for inspection purposes
  8. Salvage Certificate (if applicable)

Note: To view origin of vehicle visit MSN Autos. Select – “New or Used Cars” >> Select – “Make and Model” then year >> Select “Features and Specs”. At the bottom of the “Engine and Performance Grid” it specifies “Location.” If the location is Canada, USA or MX the vehicle may be eligible for USMCA/CUSMA.

U.S. Document Requirements

Must be provided to U.S. Customs 72 business hrs. to crossing.

  1. Commercial Invoice or Bill or Sale
  2. Registration papers
  3. EPA form 3520-1
  4. DOT form HS-7
  5. USMCA/CUSMA Certificate of Origin (if applicable)
  6. Letter of Recall and Conformity from Manufacturer (If applicable)

Requirements after Importation

  • Form 2 is mailed to you after clearance by RIV (Registrar of Imported Vehicles).
  • Both Form 1, Form 2, and paid Customs entry and required to register and insure the vehicle in Canada.

Keep in mind that certain vehicles may not be allowed in Canada. It is your obligation to ensure your vehicle is permitted entry.

Start to Import Your Vehicle(s) Today!

We can help you navigate the import process, stay compliant with Customs and save $!

Chat with a GHY Trade Specialist Today!

Share This, Choose Your Platform!


Stay in the loop, stay compliant! Get weekly or daily insights into all things trade and event invites, delivered right to your inbox.


Be Our Partner in Trade