Here are some important guidelines regarding procedure for import of cars into India.

Importing Cars in India

India has huge market for imported luxury cars. There is great demand for new cars as well as second-hand cars. The Exim Policy 2001 lifted quantitative restrictions on the import of second-hand cars.

The import of vehicles shall be subject to the following guidelines of the Government of India:

1. (I) A new imported vehicle shall mean a vehicle that: -

(a) has not been manufactured/assembled in India; and
(b) has not been sold, leased or loaned prior to importation into India; or
(c) has not been registered for use in any country according to the laws of that country, prior to importation into India.

(II) The import of new vehicles shall be subject to the following conditions:

(a) The new vehicle shall-

(i) have a speedometer indicating the speed in km / h;
(ii) have right hand steering, and controls (applicable on vehicles other than two and three wheelers);
(iii) have photometry of the headlamps to suit "keep-left" traffic; and
(iv) be imported from the country of manufacture.

(b) In addition, the new vehicle shall conform to the provisions of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 and the rules made thereunder, as applicable, on the date of import.

(c) The import of new vehicles shall be permitted only through the Customs port at Nhava Sheva (Mumbai), Calcutta and Chennai.

2. (I) A second hand or used vehicle shall mean a vehicle that :-

(a) has been sold, leased or loaned prior to importation into India; or
(b) has been registered for use in any country according to the laws of that country, prior to importation into India;

(II). The import of second had or used vehicles shall be subject to the following conditions:-

(a) The second hand or used vehicle shall not be older than three years from the date of manufacture;
(b) The second hand or used vehicle shall:

(i) have right hand steering, and controls (applicable on vehicles other than two and three wheelers);
(ii) have a speedometer indicating the speed km / h; and
(iii) have photometry of the headlamps to suit "keep left" traffic.

(c) In addition, the second hand or used vehicle shall conform to the provisions of the Motor Vehicle Act, 1988 and the rules made thereunder, as applicable, on the date of import.

(d) Import of second hand vehicles shall be allowed only through the customs port at Mumbai.

(e) The second hand or used vehicles imported into India should have a minimum roadworthiness for a period of 5 years from the date of importation into India with assurance for providing service facilities within the country during the five year period. For this purpose, the importer shall, at the time of importation, submit a declaration indicating the period of roadworthiness in respect of every individual vehicle being imported, supported by a certificate issued by any of the testing agencies, which the Central Government may notify in this regard.

(f) The vehicle has to be submitted for testing to Vehicle Research and Development Establishment (VRDE), Ahmednagar, of the Ministry of Defence or the Automotive Research Association of India, Pune or the Central Farm and Machinery Training and Testing Institute, Budni, Madhya Pradesh, and such other agencies as may be specified by the Central Government, for granting a certificate by that agency as to the compliance of the provisions of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 and any rules made thereunder.

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