Question by  AJ (112)

What do I need to know about buying a car in Mexico?

I'm visiting family in Mexico and found a really cheap car for sale. I'd like to buy it but am not sure if I'll have problems once I get back to the states.


Answer by  thebest (63)

There are very good odds that trying to bring back most cars that a regisered in Mexico will be next to impossible. Our smog standards are very strict be comparison, as well as our DOT rules are tighter.


Answer by  jeffspracklensbcglobalnet (12)

The problem is returning it to the United States. A US citizen you cannot drive a car registered in Mexico back to the US without importing it. If the car was manufactured for export you will not be able to get it inspected and registered. Cars for export to other countries have parts that don't meet DOT qualifications.


Answer by  secondbanana (289)

Beware. Cars built in Mexico don't have the same air-pollution control devices that cars do in the States. It could run fine, but might not pass inspection/emissions.


Answer by  LittleBAK (26)

Make sure the vehicle is built for US consumption. Telltale indicators that the vehicle is not built for US consumption: VIN is < 17 digits, VIN has a 0 in the 10th position (BMW), three letters at the beginning of the VIN instead of 4 (Mercedes), the letter Z in the 4th, 5th, 6th or 9th positions (Porche, Volkwagen, Audi).

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