This week we focus our 90 second guide on the subject of importing a new car into the UK. Bringing a vehicle into the country really took off around 10 years ago when all the rumours about rip-off Britian and unfair pricing began to circulate. By using the power of the internet to locate a suitable vehicle, smart buyers dismissed their local dealership and headed of to the EU to save hundreds if not thousands of pounds.
This quick guide will assist you in understanding the legal requirements of importing a vehicle into the UK. All the relevant information can be found in greater detail on the Directgov website – Importing a Vehicle.
There are procedures you will need to go through and documentation you will need to obtain to register an imported vehicle. If you intend your vehicle to be permanently kept/used in Great Britain (GB) it must be registered and taxed as soon as possible after it arrives in the country.
The vehicle should not be used or kept on public roads until the registration and vehicle tax formalities have been completed.
However, if the vehicle needs to have a single vehicle approval (SVA) or MOT test in order to be registered, the vehicle may be driven to and from the pre-arranged test appointment. Thereafter, the vehicle must be kept off the road until the registration formalities have taken place.
If you have found a car of interest but it has the tag ‘grey import’ this means that the vehicle has never been Type Approved for Europe. Be aware, though, you may have to carry out some small jobs to make the car UK roadworthy.
Registering a previously used vehicle
As part of the registration process, DVLA will need to be sure that an imported used vehicle, that is less than 10 years old meets both European Type Approval standards and UK Construction and Use and Road Vehicle Lighting legislation.
Cars, motorcycles and light goods vehicles first registered in another European member State will need to have a certificate issued by VCA under the Mutual Recognition Scheme. Larger goods vehicles will need full UK Type Approval before they can be registered.
Our tenth insurance word of the week is: BENEFICIARY
An individual, institution, trustee, or estate which receives, or may become eligible to receive, benefits under a will, insurance policy, retirement plan, annuity trust, or other contract.
The person or legal entity the owner of an insurance policy names to receive the policy benefit if the event insured against occurs.
Following on from our post ‘Detroit Motor Show 2008′, and how car makers are showcasing some extraordinary supercars, we can bring you a short but oh-so-sweet review of the Audi RB V12 TDI.
Audi is presenting a revolution in the top class at the Detroit 2008 North American International Auto Show – the first 12-cylinder diesel engine in a high-performance road sports car. The V12 TDI engine. with a displacement of six litres, powers this R8-based concept car. This unit generates a huge 500PS and 1,000 Nm of torque.
Audi has squeezed a 5.9 litre V12 twin turbo engine into the back of an R8, creating the world’s first diesel-powered supercar. I’ts 500bhp sounds impressive, but the real attention-grabber is the 738 lb ft of torque the engine will generate, which is comfortably more than double the output of the current 4.2 litre V8. Still a concept car, it seems certain to be put into production, so expect it in 2010 after the introduction of a 5 litre V10 petrol version.
Although there are some mainstream insurance companies who will offer classic car policies, many owners and enthusiasts will select a specialist classic car insurance provider. The question is often which is the best and most suitable for your driver and vehicle requirements.
We have taken a long hard look around the net and brought you the low down on the top three brokers, insurers, intermediaries and providers across the UK. You can link through to the relevant insurer and read why they are among some of the best.
Heritage Insurance Services
Heritage are passionate about classic cars. Since 1965 they have been one of the leading pioneers in classic car insurance. Heritage use a specially selected panel of leading insurers, plus have negotiated their own scheme with Chaucer underwriters, part of the Lloyds syndicate, to provide you with a policy that meets your specific requirements at a highly competitive price.
For over 20 years Lancaster have been providing quality insurance cover for classic cars. You can complete a quotation form online or call the company for instant cover for all makes and ages of car. In recent time the company has launched their Broker Scheme service, offering Classic Car Insurance schemes to many of the UK’s largest insurance brokers. To date their schemes are now available to consumers via in excess of 1,100 insurance brokers throughout the UK.
Footman James was founded in 1983 to establish a professional insurance broking service specialising in exclusive plans for niche markets. For over twenty years Footman James has enjoyed a unique relationship with vintage and classic vehicle enthusiasts and clubs. The company have developed many initiatives and have pioneered many specialist features which are now taken for granted in the field of Specialist Vehicle Insurance.
There was a very interesting BBC Newsnight this week which featured the humble traffic light. The show featured campaigner Martin Cassini who thinks roads would be safer and less congested if they were free of traffic lights.
Cassini contends that a world without traffic lights would mean less congestion and safer roads. He argues that traffic lights make us stop when it is safe to go, cost the UK £20 billion pounds a year through increased road congestion, extend journey times, and maximise emmissions from the stop start driving cycle.
Many people argue that the roads in Britiain are now more dangerous then ever, even with all the latest systems to reduce speed and manage driving habits. Cassini argues that we have a duty to try and test a traffic light free road system.
By turning streets into civilised shared spaces you would have a systen which is designed around human nature not the other way round. A road system currently in place in Norrkoping Sweden has dispensed with road markings, signs and traffic lights, with drivers now part of the urban context.
Pedestrians are allowed to stand in the middle of the road, and cross where they like. With the new system in place there have been the no accidents since the traffic lights were removed in September 2000!
If you feel aggrieved about the actions of your car insurance company or feel you have good grounds for making a complaint, there is a series of steps you can take to seek re-dress.
First and foremost it is always best to make to make your first port of call the specific car insurance provider, insurer or broker with whom you have a complaint. Try and make every effort to ascertain the name of the appropriate people to speak or write to obtain an answer or solution to your grievance. You should always ask the company about their recommended complaints procedure and follow that.
If you find no joy or resolution through your motor insurer then there are three organisations which you can approach and contacnt for guidance, information and assistance.
The first is the Association of British Insurers (ABI). Although the ABI is not an insurer, does not regulate insurers or mediate in disputes and cannot endorse individual products or services, it is still an excellent source of information and guidance. If an insurance company is a Member of the ABI it will endeavour to follow its code of conduct.
The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) is the independent service for settling disputes between businesses providing financial services and their customers. If you don’t know who to complain to at your insurer or you’re unsure about anything, get in touch with the FOS. They will contact the right person for you, telling them that you have a complaint that they need to look into.
The Financial Services Authority (FSA) regulates the insurance industry in the UK. Firms regulated by the FSA must provide a formal and free complaints service. Firms should tell you about this in information they give you about their services. Ask for this information if you don’t get it. The FSA website lays out simple guidelines for progressing your complaint.
We’ll be running an update on Liverpool Victoria Car Insurance (or LV as they are now known) offers and deals in the next few days.
In the meantime, we provide you with a YouTube video of that annoyingly catchy LV car insurance advert.
PS Just how much money did the company throw at it’s rebranding exercise?
The latest offer from More Than Car Insurance includes:
One months FREE insurance in the first year, and:
Two months FREE car insurance in the second year, and every year after that unless you claim.
Monthly payments will be spread across 12 months.
To qualify for two months free car insurance every year you renew your policy with More Than, you must not have made any claims during the year.
If you have made a claim, but you were not at fault, then you will still qualify for two months free car insurance at renewal.
Half Price Breakdown Cover
If you include More Than Breakdown Cover with your car insurance you can be sure of a great deal – as the insurer is currently offering a 50% discount on the cost – and peace of mind if you breakdown.
In this second 90 second guide we look at the car insurance term No Claims Discount (NCD). You may already have come across NCD, including associated terms such as no claims bonus, protected and named driver, among others.
If you are a first time driver you will possibly already be aware of the fact that motor insurers in the UK allow premium discounts for those policyholders with claims-free driving records.
The motor insurance market in the UK is fiercely competitive with insurers and providers competing for your business. Insurers will attempt to entice you by offering substantial (no claims) discounts for motorists with a claims-free record.
The actual level of discount varies according to the class of vehicle insured and driver profile. Motorists with over 4/5 years driving experience with no claims, can often claim a reduction of up-to 55-75% over the standard policy premium.
In general the maximum number of no claims bonus years you can claim is 5. Some insurance companies will deliver further discounts for up to 6/7/8 years claim free driving but this is rare.
Drivers can’t share a NCB earned on one car between two cars.
Drivers just starting out on their motoring journey can examine the deals from insurers offering accelerated policies. This is where the policyholder can earn no claims bonus in 10 months rather than 12.
One of our favourite insurers Adrian Flux (Specialist Car Insurance provider in the UK offering quotes for all risks including hot hatch, modified, american, kit cars, etc..) recently launched the Flux Babes website.
The ‘Babes’ are the promotional girls for Adrian Flux Insurance Services. However unlike most promotional girls who are hired from model agencies, they all work for the company in various roles, including renewals, customer service, underwriting and marketing.
Click through to the Flux Babes site where you can read all about the various girls, see hundreds of their pictures from various shows and photoshoots, and watch their video.