Production Year Problem
How to check production year of a vehicle and why is it important?
Some countries only allow you to import second hand cars if they are fairly recent models, for instance no more than 3 or 5 years old.
The purpose of this is mostly to prevent an influx of old and junk cars on their roads. Of course, being relatively new is no guarantee that the car will be in good condition. Not all old cars are bad either. Still there is a better chance that the car will be in good condition if it is new. So restricting the age is an easy measure for countries to try and make sure the cars they get from overseas will not be a danger on the road and will last long.
Other countries, specially those with their own car manufacturing industry, limit the age of the cars coming into the country to ensure the prices of imported cars will be reasonably high. On top of that, they tend to add heavy import duties. That means that cars will not lower the prices accross the whole market too much and undermine their own industry. People will still want to buy locally made new cars.
Year of manufacture vs year of registration
When countries base their import rules on the year of manufacture of a vehicle, this can cause difficulty.
In Japan, all the documents such as the Car Registration Certificate, Deregistration Certificate or Export Certificate only show the month and year of the first registration of the car, not the manufacturing date of the vehicle.
For example, consider a car that was produced in December 2005 but then the New Year holidays started and it was only sold to a buyer in the second week of January 2006. The car registration documents will show the year 2006, while the production date is 2005.
It is very important to find the correct year of manufacture. If your country only allows vehicles of a certain age and you import a car that was made a year earlier than you thought, the car may be confiscated and your will bear the loss. Or it may be subject to heavy fine, which will come out of your pocket too.
The question is, how to check the actual date of production, as the forms will only give you the date of registration.
The sure way to get the correct manufacturing date
In some cars it is easy to find the manufacturing date. There could be a plate that gives this information. It is usually the size of a credit card and is placed on the pillar near the front passenger seat.
However there is a chance that a dishonest exporter might have replaced the plate to deceive the importer. The manufacturing date is also mentioned on the front seat belts. Again these might also be changed by the con exporters.
So, how can you be sure you get the right date of manufacture?
The best way is to get the exporter to check it for you and provide proof. At Japan Auto Exports, we provide service to find the true manufacturing year of any Japanese vehicle - totally free of charge.
Vist our site at www.japanautoexports.com and click on the Check Manufacturing Date button. Enter the Chassis Number of vehicle you wish to find and select the car maker from the drop-down menu. Then click on Define and you will get month and year of production of the vehicle.
As easy as that!