Grey Imports

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    • #134679 Reply

      Hi, I am looking at buying a 1992 Mercedes SL 500 on eBay but notice it was imported into the UK from Japan in 2003.

      I am looking at buying this as an import, does anyone have any views as to whether it would affect the price.

    • #134749 Reply
      Stuart MassonStuart Masson

      Hi Mike. Yes, a grey import should be priced cheaper than an equivalent car originally supplied to the UK – even on a 25-year-old car.

      Although it will be right-hand drive, which is a good start, the specification for Japanese-market vehicles would have almost certainly been different to UK-spec cars.

      There are obviously points like metric vs imperial speedometer and trip meter, but there may be other differences to the equipment specified on the vehicle by the factory for different markets. These can be climate-related (eg – cars destined for hotter markets tend to get beefed-up air-conditioning and cooling systems) or market-driven depending on local taxes or preferences.

      The other issue with a grey import is that you will have no way of verifying anything that happened to the car prior to its import to the UK in 2003. Even if it claims to have a full Mercedes-Benz service history in the books, there is no way that a UK MB dealer could verify that information – let alone any recall work or damage repairs.

      It may be a fantastic car, but it should still be priced at less than an equivalent car that was sold here new.

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