Advice please! Importing Mustang GT from USA

bodypainter, Apr 28, 1:29pm
HI everyone, I don't know where to start with this process so hoping someone can point me in the right direction.

I don't know if it's worth bringing the car back to NZ yet, so will make that decision based on this process. Where do I even start?

Appreciate any help, advice! Thanks!

thunderbolt, Apr 28, 7:30pm
What year GT are you looking at BP?
Have you found the car and just need shipping assistance or need some help all of the way through?

skull, Apr 28, 7:35pm
Talk to member tgray he'll know 100% of the answers to all of your questions.

tgray, Apr 28, 7:53pm
Cheers for that comment skull.
I import USA cars, so am in a position to give you proper advice.
Poster, what year is the car?
Do you currently own it?
If it is under 20 years old, are you a current NZ resident?
Please provide more details and I am happy to advise you.

bodypainter, Apr 29, 5:40am
Thanks tgray - i don't own the car but I have been borrowing it from a friend for the last 8 months. Is 04 Mustang GT (v8 coupe obviously), condition good, no obvious rust but will have inspection done. Friend is going to upgrade and I have first dibs on the car. If I buy it I was thinking of bringing it home in my sea pack (I'm currently in the US).
I am an nz resident. My friend is thinking of selling it for about USD2500 has 138,000 miles on the clock and is up to date with all servicing.
Appreciate any advice.

lookoutas, Apr 29, 7:09am
Don't worry about what munch sez - he's obviously got lots of money.

Just assuming when you say 04, that it's the 04 shape. Not one built late 04, which means it's the 05 shape. The value sort've confirms that, but the later shape will have more value here.

I have been wrong in the past, but do recall that the head light change-over is not straight forward on the older shape. But can, and has been done with some No8 wire technology.

What's a sea pack consist of?
Most cars are transported in containers - 4 to a 40 footer.
Allow 6K (NZ) freighted and off the wharf, and in your hands. You will pay GST on the purchase price over there, so you have the option to sort that out without me telling you what to do. (Wink wink)
Then another 1K at least to get it through compliance. And whatever other costs you might incur.

Have a good look at the suspension and brakes, and get any worn parts either fitted over there, or send them back with it.
If the tyres are half worn, put new ones on over there, or send new tyres with it.
At that mileage, I would expect the bottom of the drivers seat has split, or should be splitting very soon. You should be able to get a replacement bottom squab, or a complete set of front seat covers.

Thanks to clarkie, we know there are only 21 04's registered in NZ.
If you have as much money as munch, you should flag it and buy something from 05 onwards. V8 only, not a V6.

If it's too much of a hassle trying to send it with your sea pack, get in touch with one of the freight Co's who specialise in sending cars back.
I use Mainfreight/Kiwi Shipping. Others will have their own pet Co's.

tg will tell you not to send a Mustang back :-)

Good luck

tgray, Apr 29, 7:13am
Ok.
Well it comes down to whether you want to bring it to NZ and sell for a profit or perhaps keep it for yourself. One scenario works, one doesn't.
Lets see. It's a 2004, so that is the last of the 'old shape' and has high miles. You say it's a GT, so we know it's the V8. Phew!
The thing to bear in mind is it is under 20 years old, so you would have to apply for the Catagory A exemption to get it registered here in NZ.
One thing to consider, is the fact about 180 of the 500 permits are left for 2015, so you would be looking at a 2016 date for earliest chance to be made road legal here, as they are likely to run out by mid June and it takes at least 2 months to get here. (my last one took 3 months due to major delays at Long Beach Port right now). Part of the requirements is you cannot sell it for 4 years after registration, so unless you want to keep it, it simply wouldn't work.
On the plus side, if you want to keep it for yourself, the price of $2500 sounds good, so exchange rate considered, you could land it here for considerably less than market value.
Good luck and post more info if you require more advice.

tgray, Apr 29, 7:21am
That is more of a reflection on their lack of desirability rather than their exclusivity.

les6, Apr 29, 7:22am
i was told 150 left late last week? pretty scary when 2 weeks before there were 211?

tgray, Apr 29, 7:23am
You are probably right. My info is a couple of weeks old.
So 87 a month is the average for 2015, so by late June it's all over.
Not good for importers who do this for a living, that have to wait 6 more months to get a car registered after that.

les6, Apr 29, 9:09am
the law was not changed for their benefit?shame they left a loophole big enough to drive a car through?

tgray, Apr 29, 9:16am
Fair call, but importers have made is easy for the novice to take advantage of the new law and make the process easy for them.

clark20, Apr 29, 10:02am
You know what I heard about today? A Jap import Mustang (LHD 2007) and was tidy. Who would have thought?

bodypainter, Apr 29, 4:21pm
you're revealing lots of gaps in my knowledge - thanks everyone!
To answer questions:

sea pack consists of my household goods. Ex-pats who ship their cars normally have their car in a crate, load into the container and then household removal is stacked around the crate. I'll be doing the same. Friend of mine has just bought a 2015 Dodge Charger and will ship his in December in his container.

Car has new all weather tyres just gone on pre-winter. Brakes just been done, new clutch, no idea on suspension, only split in the leather is on drivers side left (not on the seat), otherwise interior is in excellent condition bar floor mats. Window tints will probably need to come off - they are very dark! (car is black)

Definitely a V8 - I wouldn't consider bringing it home otherwise. I intend to keep it, it will be a second car. Does it have to be converted to RHD? I know it will probably be a pain driving LHD in NZ but that's part of the appeal for me anyway!

I probably don't have as much money as munch lol if I did I probably wouldn't bring this car home but I'd be looking for some other kind of classic american muscle to ship instead!

Thanks for advice. I've downloaded some fact sheets from the LTSA website and will have a read.

tgray, Apr 29, 8:21pm
A manual! that makes it more interesting.
Yes, the dark window tint would need to be removed.
You intend to keep it, so that's good.
It doesn't need to be converted to RHD if it qualifies for the Catagory A permit. A word of caution - does it qualify?
(Must meet 3 out of 4)
1. High performance 2 door coupe? Yes.
2. Not made in RHD? yes.
3. Classic or collectible? Maybe.
4. Produced under 20,000 p/year? No.

Re above, over 140,000 were produced in 2004, and out of that number, it is certain more than 20,000 V8's were made. The law differentiates between V8 and V6, but not between manual and auto to my knowledge.
Classic or collectible? That is the grey area and certainly wouldn't be considered to be in the USA, but in NZ it may well be.
You need to find a website from a major motoring publication that says it is such. Luckily, it doesn't have to be a USA website.
The advantage you have, is you have the car and for $180, you can apply in advance before importing it, using the VIN number. If they you knock you back, all you lose is your application fee. I would definitely do it that way so you are all covered.

bodypainter, Apr 30, 1:02am
awesome thanks tgray! If there are only 21 04's in NZ (as is suggested way above) then perhaps it would be considered collectible then? no idea. will look for publications!
Let's say I can bring it in, do I need to do anything to the car before shipping? does it need some kind of inspection certificate before leaving US soil or is all of that done at NZ end?

tgray, Apr 30, 3:54am
You will need a bill of sale and the original certificate of title (pink slip).
Must be able to prove you own it, so have the seller make up receipt showing his name and address as the seller and your name and address as the buyer.
I would suggest you give Steve a call at Kiwi shipping (Mainfreight) in Long beach. He is a Kiwi and can give you more info as to what's required. (no self promo as I have no affiliation with them).

monzaman, Apr 30, 12:18pm
My sister got an '06 GT convertible for $33k total on road costs via mustang club who have someone in California to find excellent examples,sis. doesn't mind lh drive,keep car for over 4 years and conversion not required.

lookoutas, May 1, 9:20am
I think it was tg who mentioned they are not really desirable, indicated by the low numbers. Which is brought about by the fact that the new model was due for release the following year. So most people don't bother with the old one?

In fact, since the first generation, it happens every year before a new model is due.

The positive part is that you could have that on the road here for about 10K. Now that's a cheap grunty car, that qualifies you to become a member of a club, and take it to events.
You could take it to the Beach Hop, but just don't cruise the street too much.

Would I bring a 2004 Mustang in for myself?
"No"
Could probably spread that back as far as 1974.

bodypainter, May 2, 2:46am
There are certainly other generations of mustang that I think look nicer, but this one has grown on me. I have always been a mustang fan and with the opportunity to have one on the road in NZ for potentially a very good price (and my shipping overheads may not actually be too high), it's looking desirable for me. While I do have definite petrol head tendencies, I don't know a lot about how it all works under the hood - I just like the sound of the thing :-)
I did have a look on a couple of the nz mustang websites and the fourth generation mustang is not popular at all!

lookoutas, Feb 16, 5:44pm
If it pops ya cork, then bring it in.

To get a handle on costs so you can compare.
If you took it to Kiwi Shipping, the freight would be about $2500.
Then they would do all the work at this end, and you would pay them about another $2500, and take it away.
In that final clobber would be the GST on the Bill of Sale that you will have given to them. Of course, the GST paid will be on the amount that your friend will agree to accept from you, and write on the BoS. Or you might just call it BS.

If you bring it back with your sea pack, then you might have to do all the donkey work at this end, but you also don't have to pay for your time.

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