Import from US to Canada to save money

CostcoSamples

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Teslas in Canada are very highly marked up compared to US prices. It is a point of frustration for a lot of people who might otherwise be able to get a Tesla. For example:

Tesla Model y Long Range = $48,990 USD for Americans, and $69,900 CAD for Canadians.
Note that $48,990 USD = $61,715 CAD. In other words, Canadians pay an extra $8,185 because Canada.

I am planning to make a trip to the factory to pick up my CT. I am hoping I can pay the US price and take care of the import myself (if possible, I should save over $10k on a tri-motor CT). The import process isn't very complicated, just a bunch of paper work and some minor fees. Has this been done before? Does Tesla allow Canadians to buy in the US?





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Teslas in Canada are very highly marked up compared to US prices. It is a point of frustration for a lot of people who might otherwise be able to get a Tesla. For example:

Tesla Model y Long Range = $48,990 USD for Americans, and $69,900 CAD for Canadians.
Note that $48,990 USD = $61,715 CAD. In other words, Canadians pay an extra $8,185 because Canada.

I am planning to make a trip to the factory to pick up my CT. I am hoping I can pay the US price and take care of the import myself (if possible, I should save over $10k on a tri-motor CT). The import process isn't very complicated, just a bunch of paper work and some minor fees. Has this been done before? Does Tesla allow Canadians to buy in the US?
Let me know....if I'll save that kind of money I'll do the same thing.
 

Davidms

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Have imported many vehicles before but never a Tesla. I don't see why we can't. I'll be doing Factory pickup also.
 

Carmageddon

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What about the purchasing itself? I assume we'd have to have cash, as we couldnt get Financing while buying in the US?
 

alan auerbach

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Teslas in Canada are very highly marked up compared to US prices. It is a point of frustration for a lot of people who might otherwise be able to get a Tesla. For example:

Tesla Model y Long Range = $48,990 USD for Americans, and $69,900 CAD for Canadians.
Note that $48,990 USD = $61,715 CAD. In other words, Canadians pay an extra $8,185 because Canada.

I am planning to make a trip to the factory to pick up my CT. I am hoping I can pay the US price and take care of the import myself (if possible, I should save over $10k on a tri-motor CT). The import process isn't very complicated, just a bunch of paper work and some minor fees. Has this been done before? Does Tesla allow Canadians to buy in the US?
Interesting -- that's a big penalty I was unaware of.

The only rationales I can think of are that (a) the exchange-rate can fluctuate by the day, hour, minute (I don't know), whereas the posted price should remain relatively stable, so sellers protect themselves by inflating the non-US price; and (b) the cost of doing business is higher in Canada than in the US, so each dealer needs to make more per sale.

If (as I think is the case) every Tesla includes the same delivery fee whether the vehicle was sold at the factory door or at the most distant service facility, you could arrange for delivery at the closest facility to you, possibly saving you a lot of two-way travel. (Not sure how you'd deal with not paying US sales tax or other costs, insurance, and registration/licencing, but I'm sure it's been done.)
 
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Fujisan

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Also very interested by this topic.

I would love to pick-up the CT at the factory not only to save money, but also to get my CT quicker (I read that Tesla will prioritize orders from Texas and factory pick up).
I've imported three cars from the US in 2006, 2007 and 2009. All Subaru Foresters. Saved 10-12k each, and even made a profit on the second that allowed me to buy the turbocharged XT version in 2009. The process is even simpler now than it was back then (first one, everything was pretty much paper-based).

However there are a couple of things that come to mind and to consider/clarify before importing the CT:
  1. Canadian specific vs. US specs (might be some cdn market specific specs that require modification to the CT, I assume these would have to be performed upon arrival by Tesla in Canada. Also, the registrar of imported vehicles (RIV) must classify the us spec CT as importable).
  2. Insurance (last car I imported, I wasn't able to find any company willing to insure it while driving it in the US, so I had to get the car delivered on a float truck).
  3. Warranty coverage - I doubt that this would be an issue, but for Subaru (and several other brands)the warranty was with Subaru America, so Canadian dealers would not cover warranty issues (or they would charge for the work and you would have to get refunded from Subaru America).
  4. Temporary plates to travel from factory to border (I assume Tesla would arrange that, otherwise a trip to the DMV will be required.
  5. Government incentives - not sure if these (Fed+Prov) will even be available given the CT cost, but if they are I'm curious as to how you would claim them.

I'd love to make a road trip out to TX, visit the factory, and bring my CT back... fingers crossed, and hopefully the Canadian dollar appreciates between now and then!

Anyone hear of other Tesla owners successfully importing model S,3,X, or Y?
 

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I have been thinking the same. Have family in Austin as a bonus. I went down to Montana to get a quad and a tractor when our dollar was on par. Saved about 6K. The Arctic Cat dealers in the US were told not to sell to Canadians so as not to upset Canadian franchises, but I found one that would ignore that. With no Tesla franchises that shouldn't be an issue. As long as Tesla will sell to us at their USD price it should be doable. Who is going to be the first guinea pig to walk the red tape of death? I'm around 40k in line.
 

Carmageddon

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Also very interested by this topic.

I would love to pick-up the CT at the factory not only to save money, but also to get my CT quicker (I read that Tesla will prioritize orders from Texas and factory pick up).
I've imported three cars from the US in 2006, 2007 and 2009. All Subaru Foresters. Saved 10-12k each, and even made a profit on the second that allowed me to buy the turbocharged XT version in 2009. The process is even simpler now than it was back then (first one, everything was pretty much paper-based).
Could you please tell about your past experiences, how did you do the financing in the US?

I have been thinking the same. Have family in Austin as a bonus. I went down to Montana to get a quad and a tractor when our dollar was on par. Saved about 6K. The Arctic Cat dealers in the US were told not to sell to Canadians so as not to upset Canadian franchises, but I found one that would ignore that.
Nice, did you finance it, if so could you provide details on what the dealer offered and how that works for Canadians in US dealerships?

I'll finance after a significant down payment.
Sure, but do US Dealerships/financial institutions provide financing to Canadians?
 

jerhenderson

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Could you please tell about your past experiences, how did you do the financing in the US?



Nice, did you finance it, if so could you provide details on what the dealer offered and how that works for Canadians in US dealerships?



Sure, but do US Dealerships/financial institutions provide financing to Canadians?
I can't imagine that it's too different than buying and financing at a legacy dealership... the Tesla site offers financing.
 

alan auerbach

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I can't imagine that it's too different than buying and financing at a legacy dealership... the Tesla site offers financing.
Someone asked, "... do US Dealerships/financial institutions provide financing to Canadians?"

Any Canadian who's been financed by Tesla should be able to answer. But here's some general infro:

Financing is such a significant profit operation that the seller would prefer financing over cash. If the money is loaned by Tesla, there's a chance that they don't care if you're a Yank or Canuk. But if Tesla goes through a US financial organization, I doubt it will lend to a borrower with a non-US address and no US credit history.
 

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