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Discussion Starter #1
Hi folks,
Are there any great differences between the US volt and the UK other than the usual LHD and rear fog etc? Are the chargers compatible etc? Or if not do they take much work to get compatible. Long story short I've an aunt coming over and says I can have her ex husbands 2011 Volt if i pay for shipping. Anyone here have any knowledge of the differences between the uk and us versions? Thnx in advance
 

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I don't know for certain but importing from the USA (or from anywhere outside the EU) isn't that simple or cheap.

You would need to have the car tested and brought up to UK standards with respect to lights, emissions, etc. I am pretty certain that most US cars would require significant changes and might be horrendously expensive.

There might be a VAT and/or duty liability.

Getting insurance might be difficult or even impossible.

Now, please don't misunderstand me... I am not just trying to poo poo the idea. I think it is a great idea if you could do it but I have heard of other people wanting to do a similar thing with other models and they gave it up as a bad idea after investigating.

Anyone else know any more?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I've spoken to hmrc and I'd only be liable for VAT if I sold the car on, as I would own the car for 3 months before importing I wouldn't be liable. I was considering an EV for years so Dont mind spending a few grand getting over, I can transport it for 1200 for delivery within 6 weeks . Test will rely mostly on fog lights, and registration. I used to work at halfords and often helped people who were importing imprezas, lancers etc and needed fog lamps fitted. I'm happy to just fit an extra lamp into the bumper and install an aux switch in cab. But I suppose the main concern so far is the charging port and voltages etc. Will it work at charge points in UK? At home I could prolly knock something up but will struggle when out and about. Would be interested in peoples opinions/help/discouragement.
 

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You might need to replace the headlamps with Right Hand drive units to pass what I think is still called the Single Vehcle Approval (SVA) test before you could register the car in the UK. This would not have been a problem with the Subarus etc as they probably came from Japan where they also drive on the "correct" side of the road!

You might also want to research the impact on insurance costs with the car being LHD as some companies run a mile when that is mentioned.

I would also budget for a 220 volt (UK Spec) charge unit as most homes in the USA are 110volt.

Otherwise good luck with your present!

Big Paul
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Hi big Paul, thanks. I'm actually still really keen on getting the car over, I hear you on the head lamps, I also have been told the indicators repeaters may need installing/upgrading. Will keep you all posted.
 

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Well, it sounds like it might be less of an ordeal that I initially thought. Great.

As for charging... as far as I know, the charging system on the US Volt is identical to the one in the UK. Even ours here can charge using the 110V level 1 charger if we had a 110V power source. The car uses the J1772 charging standard which is the same worldwide so it is the UK charging cable that you would need... they are about £250 from Vauxhall. Don't know how much they are from Chevrolet but the are the same product even if they might look and be badged differently.

I am very certain that charging here will not be a problem in any respect.

Good luck. If it works out for you then at the prices they are charging here in the UK vs the USA some others might be interested in doing it if it works out cheaper.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Hi Paul, thanks, ive emailed a company that have imported a volt before and also ive found a company shipmycar that ship cars and do all the necessary mods for the SVA, but not sure if they've done EVs before. it could actually be a winner, although driving a lefty on our side of the road is a little worrying but with my 20mile round trip commute, the idea of never buying petrol again could make it all worthwhile. How are you finding your ampera Paul?
 

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Love it!

We also have a Nissan Leaf so we mainly use the Ampera for trips over 50 miles so our lifetime mpg is still quite low at 105 but it is a great car... apart from the SatNav which can only be described a rubbish!
 
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