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Old 07-24-2010, 09:44 PM   #1
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Angry Porsche Cars Canada - Import Process Sucks

Porsche Cars North America was such a fantastic company to deal with when I imported my first Porsche from the US into Canada. The whole expeience was great. The cutomer service rep ended the phone conversation with me with "Welcome to the Porsche family". All I could think was WOW ...

This past month I have purchased another Porsche from the US and am going through the importation process again ... only this time the experience is completely terrible. Since Porsche Cars Canada has split from Porsche Cars North America, they have decided to intentionally make it difficult to bring a US car into Canada.

There is a certification process that only "can be done by a Porsche dealership" at a MSRP of $500. This has to be done in order to get the Recall clearance Letter from Porsche. They have a booklet of items that a certified Porsche technician must go through including checking to see if the vehicle has "Porsche" approved N rated tires on it, checking the engine revs at load, amongst a number of other things.

Then they tell you that they have to send a copy of the bill of sale (so they can see what you paid for the vehicle) along with this booklet to Porsche Cars Canada Head Office who, in a "week or two" will let them know if they will allow the vehicle to pass certification. When I paid my bill for this "service", I asked for a copy of what was being sent to the Head Office and was told that I couldn't have a copy even though I had just paid $560 to have this work done!

I seems to me that Porsche Cars Canada would want to welcome more Porsche owners into this small and often overlooked market. If nothing more than to have the potential to keep their sevice bays and parts counters a little busier & potentially sell more new cars. Rather, they seem intent on following the lead of Mercedes & BMW attempting to keep the market prices for their Brand high while trying to deter anyone from seeking better selection & likely a lower priced unit from the US.

I guess it will be interesting to see what the head office does ... will I get my certification? I did all of my due dilligence with repect to this vehicle in advance of my purchase. It meets or exceeds al CMVSS regulations and should have no reason to be denied. It has never been in an accident, has a clear title, and no recalls outstanding. It has daytime running lights and a metric instrument cluster.

Porsche makes a fantastic product and I really enjoy owning and driving one ... but I really am not happy with Porsche Cars Canada going the direction they have. It is really a shame too because when it comes time for me to purchase my next one .... I was planning to buy a new one .... now I am not so sure. I am feeling like I just got screwed and wasn't kissed first!

If you are going to import a Porsche into Canada ... understand the game has changed and Porsche is making it difficult now instead of being helpful & reasonable.
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Old 07-25-2010, 05:56 AM   #2
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Wink Porsche Canada import vehicle

Just want to make a comment on your experience here.. i'm not sure when the last time you had brought a car in from the U.S. it sure sounds like they really want to discourage people from bringing them in.
If i remember right when i brought my 04S from the States in 2007, all i needed was a phone call to Porsche North America and they really was so accomodating and nice enough to send me the so called certification "NO RECALL" note with their Letter Head. That was all i needed to fax over the border in Fort Erie, together with the bill of sale from the dealer in the States 72 hrs prior to me crossing the border.
Paid my duties with Canada Customs and off i went , made my appointment with Canadian Tire shop for the daytime running light activation, etc.. done in no time.. paid another $200 to the RIV(Registrar of Imported Vehicle) got the sticker and that was it.....My car runs like a charm never had to bring it to a Stealership and all maintenance done by me and my nephew technician.... my box i can say drives and looks better than new ! detailed to the "T"..
i wish you luck!
thx
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Old 07-25-2010, 09:10 AM   #3
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I don't know why you needed to deal with Porsche Canada when importing your new-ish car to Canada.

All you need to do is go to a Porsche Dealer in the US, get them to print out a letter stating that there aren't any outstanding recalls on the car, and drop that info and the title off at the Border Crossing office 24 hours ahead of time before bring the vehicle to the border (on a trailer, of course).

Then you bring the car into Canada, take it to Canadian Tire, and get it to pass the inspection process.

Unless the car is under warrantee, there's no reason to get Porsche Canada involved in the process at all.

BC.
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Old 07-25-2010, 11:51 AM   #4
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Unhappy Reply

I am glad I posted this so others would see.

The old days of simply getting the recall letter from a US dealership or Porsche Cars North America are done! They are no longer allowed to provide the letter to people exporting a Porsche vehicle.

My first experience was in May of 2008 and it was as easy as faxing my bill of sale showing I owned the car to PCNA and they immediately sent me the required clearance letter. Simple ... easy ... no frustration. Off to Canuck tire and done.

Now the game has changed and the US dealers won't touch this for fear of losing their franchise. PCNA tells you that you have to go to a Canadian dealership and go through the process ... at a significant cost I might add ... before they will consider a providng the clearance letter. Any and all modifications identified must be carried out by a Canadian Porsche dealership ... again at a significant cost.

Don't be fooled folks ... the old days are gone. Since Parche Cars Canada has split from Porsche Cars North America, they are hell bent on protecting their "market" and deterring anyone from importing a Porsche car.

Before you buy a US vehicle .. be sure you unserstand the new process fully. When you call a Canadian dealership and ask what modifications are required they generally only tell you about the DRL and the change to KM's (4 Dealerships told me the same thing). I thought no big deal right. When I got the car here, they pull out a 1/4 inch thick inspection booklet and it became a whole lot more involved. Like I said .. even checking to see if my servicing was up to date, if the tires were Porsche "N' spec approved ... an on and on. Not sure what either have to do with meeting or exceeding the CMVSS regulations.

Let's just say that Porsche used to be great to deal with ... they aren't anymore!
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Old 07-25-2010, 01:54 PM   #5
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You have to understand sales quotas and how they drive what people on quota to do

The Canada guys want to protect their market because they know you can import for less. They don't get paid a cent on that and, now that they are a separate corporate entity, they have to pay for that corporate overhead on a much smaller base of sales than when Atlanta could spread the costs over the total US and Canadian sales numbers.

Sales driven compensation guarantees an internal fight over who gets credit for the sale. And drives people to act selfishly and not for the benefit of the long term corporate interest. A sales guy doesn't care if his actions will drive business into the repair side, that is a different profit center and so benefits him little and long term...and if he doesn't sell he won't be around to collect anything anyway.

And in a tough market, the fight over who gets credit gets only worse because every side has to justify their positions with numbers every month.
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Old 07-25-2010, 02:00 PM   #6
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Don't feel so bad, Ferrari dealer here charges $5000 for that same paperwork.
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Old 07-25-2010, 02:02 PM   #7
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What if you're the US owner? Surely you can request the letter from the dealer? On what grounds would they refuse?
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Old 07-25-2010, 05:51 PM   #8
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I've imported a few cars myself, no Porsches though. I did some research and there are ways to avoid the fees etc. A company like BMW has an agreement with RIV, as stated in the admissible vehicle list, that all inspections etc have to be performed at a BMW dealer. Porsche, as far as I know, does not have that setup with the government.

Hence, you could have the original owner of the vehicle in the states request a recall clearance letter directly from the manufacturer. Besides day time running lights and a metric speedo (quick change with the knob) no other modifications should need to be done. If these are done before entering the country your import should be as simple as your old one with Canadian Tire doing the out of country inspection and you being good to go!
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Old 07-25-2010, 06:20 PM   #9
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I agree with Tawheed, why cant you ask the US owner to get a letter from the US dealer stating there are no recalls. Just get the buy to say the new buy wants to for personal assurance. Then supply that to RIV.
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Old 07-25-2010, 08:15 PM   #10
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Wish it were that Easy ...

Unfortunately, a letter generated from a US dealer or by Porsche Cars North America (US) will no longer satisfy RIV.

Porsche Cars Canada, supposedly through months of consultations with RIV, has set the new terms. RIV will only accept the clearance letter from Porche Cars Canada. It must have Porsche Cars Canada letterhead ... US documents will no longer work.

Unfortunately, if you want to import a Porsche into Canada you will be paying the fees to your local Porsche dealer and waiting for your aaproval letter to come from the Head Office in Ontario. There is no other way to "get around" the fees anymore.

Oh well ...
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Old 07-26-2010, 05:20 AM   #11
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It gets worse than just N-spec tyres. I know a fella that works for a small local car lot, specializing in "toys". He was telling me that they sourced a US Porsche on behalf of a customer and the local dealership (apparently owned and operated by Ali Baba and associates) charged $1200 for the inspection. Just having N-spec tyres wasn't good enough - it failed because three of the tyres were N0 and one was N1.

After hearing a few stories like this I would never try and import a Porsche. If I couldn't find what I wanted in Canada then I would just buy a different car.

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Old 07-26-2010, 06:44 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark_T
It gets worse than just N-spec tyres.

it failed because three of the tyres were N0 and one was N1.
Something like that should have been fixed before sending it to inspection. I'm not a fan of mixing front to back rubber but mixing just one corner? Hmmm?
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Old 07-26-2010, 06:54 AM   #13
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Depends. If they were all put on new at the same time, same make and model, but one had a different N-spec, I wouldn't like being made to change it unless it required a change due to wear anyway.
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Old 07-26-2010, 08:01 AM   #14
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Move to America...problem solved !!
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Old 07-26-2010, 08:18 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrentMcK
Unfortunately, a letter generated from a US dealer or by Porsche Cars North America (US) will no longer satisfy RIV.

Porsche Cars Canada, supposedly through months of consultations with RIV, has set the new terms. RIV will only accept the clearance letter from Porche Cars Canada. It must have Porsche Cars Canada letterhead ... US documents will no longer work.

Unfortunately, if you want to import a Porsche into Canada you will be paying the fees to your local Porsche dealer and waiting for your aaproval letter to come from the Head Office in Ontario. There is no other way to "get around" the fees anymore.

Oh well ...
The recall clearance letter doesn't have to be a letter. With my VW R32 they just punched the VIN into the vw.com site and that satisfied RIV. With Porsche, all you need is a dealer in the states to print out the screen of their online tool that shows the car has no open recalls.
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Old 07-26-2010, 10:11 AM   #16
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I almost bought a Boxster from ebay ( from Florida ) was going to click the 'buy it now' button. And just before I did .. I was surfing through the local classified ads and found my car, a year newer and he was just a few miles away. ( I'm in Montreal ) . I think getting the US car into Canada might have been a horror story.
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Old 07-26-2010, 05:24 PM   #17
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Tawhhed ... the rules have changed

Tawheed ...

The rules have changed ... nothing but a letter from Porsche Cars Canada will be accepted by RIV. I am going through this right now .... nothing from the US will be acceptable.

Porsche has made it as tough as Mercedes and BMW.

If you think that you can do this with a print screen from the US ... I wish you luck.
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Old 07-26-2010, 10:33 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrentMcK
Tawheed ...

The rules have changed ... nothing but a letter from Porsche Cars Canada will be accepted by RIV. I am going through this right now .... nothing from the US will be acceptable.

Porsche has made it as tough as Mercedes and BMW.

If you think that you can do this with a print screen from the US ... I wish you luck.
Wow, that must be a very recent rule.. I was looking into it about a month or so ago.. Luckily, I found the car I wanted locally
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Old 07-27-2010, 01:14 PM   #19
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Looking at the RIV website, I think things are a bit funky, depending on what year car you are buying.

Here's the link I found for Porsche approved cars:

http://www.tc.gc.ca/roadsafety/safevehicles/importation/usa/vafus/list2/PORSCHE.htm

It lists all Boxsters as being admissible, all years.
The date on the bottom of the page says 7-22-2010 as the date modified.

I would pitch a fit, and find a way to force them to take the US printed recall notice.

The big issue that I see is that the process is being controlled by a PRIVATE COMPANY, and not the gov't. This means that if the company made a deal with Porsche, there really isn't any going around it, unless you can force the gov't to get involved.

BC.
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Old 07-27-2010, 04:50 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bladecutter
Looking at the RIV website, I think things are a bit funky, depending on what year car you are buying.

Here's the link I found for Porsche approved cars:

http://www.tc.gc.ca/roadsafety/safevehicles/importation/usa/vafus/list2/PORSCHE.htm

It lists all Boxsters as being admissible, all years.
The date on the bottom of the page says 7-22-2010 as the date modified.

I would pitch a fit, and find a way to force them to take the US printed recall notice.

The big issue that I see is that the process is being controlled by a PRIVATE COMPANY, and not the gov't. This means that if the company made a deal with Porsche, there really isn't any going around it, unless you can force the gov't to get involved.

BC.
Yeah, I looked again today.. Nothing solid on RIV saying they need something from Porsche Canada.. I think this can still be got around if you have the will
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