Importing Used Japanese Mini (kei) Trucks Directly From Japan

If you are thinking of acquiring a mini truck to run your daily errands or for whatever reasons you have, then Japanese used mini trucks could be a good option. You can always find Japanese used vehicles in your local used car dealer, but have you ever weighed in and thought of importing the vehicle directly from Japan? Many people haven’t been taking advantage of directly importing their vehicles, leaving all the work for the dealers who quote crazy figures compared to the dirty cheap cost of the vehicle.

In this post, we hope to shed much light on the import process and help importers understand what is required for them when they would like to import from Japan.

Why Buy Mini (Kei) Truck From Japan?

Most people would ask, why not just buy the Kei mini truck from the local car dealer and get rolling? As that could be a good idea, you may also want to explore other available options such as importing from Japan. Below are some of the things that you could benefit from if you opt to buy your mini truck from Japan.

Affordability – we all love to be frugal when it comes to spending and choosing to import your own truck could be one way of saving on your next vehicle.

First off, you are cutting down the dealer who is looking to make profits by importing and shipping it to your local car dealer. But why not import it yourself? After all, it’s just paperwork and understanding some importing basics which you can master easily.

Easy to follow process – Forget the many myths and the runts that you will hear from folks all over saying that importing yourself is a big hassle. People are doing it every single day and they love the experience, so why don’t you also take the leap?

Good mechanical condition – One thing that you need to know is that all Japanese vehicles undergo periodical inspection. KEI mini trucks for example undergo annual inspection, making them a good option for anyone looking for a used mini truck to buy.

Steps Of Importing Used Mini Trucks From Japan

When you have made up your mind and decided to import your mini truck, here are the steps that you need to follow:

Get in touch with the vehicle exporter – If for instance, you check out our listings page and see a mini truck that you would love to import, you can examine the details and reach out to find out more.

Buying a vehicle isn’t a pick-and-go kind of deal, but one that you need to make precise inquiries to determine if it is the perfect one that you are shopping for. In such a case, getting in touch inquiring for more details is the best way forward.

You also need to understand the price quotation to make an informed decision. Prices are usually quoted as CIF or FOB. CIF which is the most common means refers to the pricing where the exporter takes care of every other cost incurred. On the other end, FOB includes only the transportation costs, exclusive of other duty and custom charges. CIF is the most convenient method of importing especially if you are inexperienced with the import business.

Placing Your Order – The next step is to make your order which in many cases is done through bank wire transfer. Again, you need to be cautious when sending money as there are scams all over and without keenness the transaction could get messy. When your order is placed, the exporter usually sends you a mail with all the order details including insurance certificate and duty costs receipts if you opted for the CIF option. Some of these details will also be required when collecting your vehicle and it is advisable that one submit them earlier before the vehicle is delivered. This will ease the processing and get your vehicle released on time.

Receiving Your Vehicle – After the shipping is done by the exporter, it is the role of Consignee (you) to pick it up from the port. The port will act as a clearance point, unless you have a private terminal. To avoid your vehicle being moved to customs, where it will attract accruing charges, you should pick it up within 15 days of delivery. You will be presented with forms to fill manually at the port and you will pay for the clearance fee as well. Your forms will then be stamped and your vehicle cleared. Be sure to have your driver’s license when you go to pick up your mini truck.

From there, the other procedure of registering the vehicle and getting it plated is an easy walk in the park which you can do easily.
Some Important Forms That You Will Fill In The Import Process
Here are some of the important forms that you will need to download and fill while in the process of importing your vehicle.

Most of the details are about the vehicle model and the shipping details. Should you get stuck filling them, the staff of the respective departments could help.

Entry form – this is the first form that you will have to fill which notifies the government that you are importing something from another country. The significant questions asked on this form are about what you are importing, where it is headed to and when it is being imported.

EPA form – The shipping needs to be EPA (Environmental Protection agency) and DOT (department Of Transport) compliant and this is what this form is all about.

CBP form – This is the Customs and border Protection which is necessary when shipping anything across countries.

Conclusion:

Importing used mini trucks from Japan isn’t as crazy as many dealers want you to believe. Hopefully, the steps above have shed enough light to help you understand more about how to import a mini truck from Japan. You can check out our list of vehicles which comes in different models.

You may also consult with the CBP officers should you have doubt about anything regarding shipping your vehicle.

How to Buy Mini Trucks From Japan

An increasing number of people across the United States are realizing the boundless reasons to buy mini trucks from Japan. You can always get your mini truck from the dealer shop around you but that is only if you are going there with a sack of cash to spend. Many people are realizing that they could save a lot by importing the trucks by themselves, which in reality isn’t as lengthy process as many would think. It could however get hectic if one fails to follow the right procedure.

In this write-up, we will cover some of the things that you need to keep in mind when you are looking to buy mini trucks from Japan.

What You Need To Know Before Importing Your Mini Truck From Japan

You may have read or heard about stories of vehicles being seized and not ending up in the hands of the owners because of one reason or the other. You also don’t want a surprise charges that breaks that ends up blowing your initial budget. There are processes and expectations that a vehicle or an importer is expected to meet. Below is all you need to know before you even think about shopping for a mini truck from Japan:

The Process Of Importing To The U.S

For anything to be imported to the United States, one will have to file for a special requirement called an “Entry”. The entry is meant to notify the state that you are importing cargo from another county to the united states.

Under the Entry, one will also have to specify what the import item is, when it will be shipped in, where it is from and the particular place where it is headed to. After filling the Entry, it is then submitted to the CBP for analysis and approval is usually an easy process.

Usually, there are two kinds of Entries that one should fill depending on the cost of the vehicle being imported. If the cost of the vehicle excluding insurance is $2499.99 or less, then one will fill a normal entry. Otherwise, for any vehicle that is above this figure, there another special kind of Entry which demands more details.

Understanding The United States Import Laws

The U.S congress has passed laws that restrict the import of vehicles from other countries unless they meet the environmental safety standards. The standards are set under EPA (Environmental Protection Agency and DOT (Department Of Transport). This is the most common reason for vehicles been seized when they enter the United States. Thee is however an exception to this restriction where a vehicle that is 25 years old from the date of manufacture (classic vehicle) can be imported without any issues.

The imported vehicle also goes through customs where it is inspected for other things such as vehicle’s authenticity of the parts.

Understand the Terminologies

buy mini truck from JapanAnother thing that you don’t want to be caught up with and one that could end up blowing your budget if you are not keen with are the terminologies that are used in the vehicle import arena. Here are the terminologies that you should be conversant with:

Importer – This is the party that is responsible for shipping the vehicle, paying for customs and filling the Entry.

Consignee – This is you, the owner of the vehicle being imported.

Duties – This is the custom charges such as tax and is applicable to every vehicle that enters the United States.

Port of Entry– This is the port at which the imported vehicle is received into the United States.

Date of import – This refers to the time when the shipment arrives at the United States port.

Date of Entry – This is simply the date when you filed to get an entry for the vehicle being imported.

Date of export – This is when the vehicle left the country where it is imported from.

HTS Code – This stands for Harmonized Tariff Code and it is classification in which particular imports are put into since each import cluster attracts a certain duty charge. In order to know what duty charges your imported truck will attract, you should check the HTS code from hts.usitc.gov where you will also find the rates.
Importer Security Filings – ISF is a protocol that requires the importers of cargo that is filed under formal entries to submit all cargo and freight information to the CBP before the cargo arrives.

Custom bonds – These are formal entry bonds which are meant to act as insurance for the customs and that they will be paid for. This could be ISF (Importer Security Filing) bonds, DOT and Entry bonds.

Harbor Maintenance Fee – HMF as it is commonly known is a fee that is charged for the maintenance of the port. This is however dependent on the Port and not applicable to all ports. The fee is normally 0.125% of the import value.

Custom Ruling – Sometimes classifying a vehicle depending on its condition, or the condition of its parts doesn’t fit well in its rightful class. If one intends to use the vehicle for off-road purposes they still can since custom ruling will classify the vehicle under a dump class.

Merchandise Processing Fee – This is the processing fee that is charged on all imports whether under formal or informal entries. Formal entries attract higher charges where one is required to pay 0.3464% of the total cost of the imports. It is however capped at $485. Informal entries on the other end attracts a flat rate $2 for automated entries, $6 for manual entries and $9 when the entry is handled under the CBP.

Conclusion:

If you want to buy mini trucks from Japan, it could turn out to be a hectic process if you don’t know most of the import procedures. Hopefully this guide has shed some light on how to go about buying your mini truck from Japan.

You can always have a look at our listings and you could surely find an affordable mini truck that suits your needs. Should you have any questions or need help knowing how your mini truck will be imported, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.