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    What are the rules for importing a vehicle into Mexico?


    Rules and procedures will vary based on the status of your visa, whether you are importing your vehicle temporarily or indefinitely, whether the vehicle is brand new from a country with which Mexico has a free trade agreement, such as NAFTA, or the vehicle is classified as used or classic.

    Temporary residents and retirees are permitted to import their vehicles to Mexico. All new vehicles (i.e., current or later model years with an odometer reading of less than 600 miles) from the U.S., Canada and the E.U. are admitted duty free.

    If you do not drive your vehicle to Mexico yourself, only an authorized customs broker can carry out the importation of your vehicle to Mexico on your behalf. The only exception to this is spouses and family members may temporarily import their family member’s car if they prove the relationship. Cars that are leased or financed require a letter from the leasing or financing company giving permission to be taken into Mexico.

    If you wish to bring a large truck over one ton in weight, you will need a special certification. You also may bring a trailer and motorcycles with your vehicle, up to three non-road legal recreational vehicles.

    The duration of the temporary importation permit conforms to your immigration document, which is up to 180 days for tourists and up to the end of the total 4-year term for temporary residents. Permanent residents may not import or drive foreign plated cars (unless the importer is in the car or the car is imported by a direct family member).

    If you or a family member does not bring the vehicle in to Mexico, you will need to employ a freight forwarder/broker that specializes in vehicles and is experienced with Mexican customs. This may be the same company or affiliate of the company you are using for your household move, if you choose to use an international moving company.

    Documents required to import your vehicle into Mexico are:

    • Registration from your country of origin not expired more than 3 months
    • Invoice or bill of sale
    • Original vehicle title
    • Driver’s license
    • Passport copy
    • Original Temporary Resident visa
    • Permission from finance/leasing company