T/A In Germany
This is a discussion on T/A In Germany within the Firebird / WS6 forums, part of the Vehicle Specific category; Does anyone know how rare a F-Body Trans Am is in Germany? I am in the military and was wondering ...
06-03-2010, 07:50 PM #1
T/A In Germany
Does anyone know how rare a F-Body Trans Am is in Germany? I am in the military and was wondering if I should get rid of T/A in states or try and sell it in Germany? Also, does anyone know how much a T/A would sell for in Germany? Thanks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
06-03-2010, 08:26 PM #2
Probably extremely rare. Surely would cost a lot to ship over. I don't know how much it would be worth, but I already knew Germany has a reputation for being 'green', so I looked up emissions regulations. http://www.aboutdrivingabroad.co.uk/...compliant.html Also, gas is much more expensive in Europe. Therefore, your polluting, gas-guzzler might be so costly to operate there as to scare off potential German buyers.
06-03-2010, 08:50 PM #3
06-04-2010, 09:52 AM #4
Thank you so much for the contact!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
06-04-2010, 09:56 AM #5
You're welcome. I'm sure he'd be glad to help you out when he checks in.
06-04-2010, 10:00 AM #6
- Join Date
- Oct 2009
- The Woodlands/spring/houston
- 99 trans am
this is blasphemy!!!!
06-04-2010, 01:42 PM #7
Take it with you. I assume you are going on an Uncle Sam sponsored tour. If you are single Uncle Sam will ship for you. In my case being a family man we shipped the wife's van by Uncle Sam and I used a private shipper (E.H. Harms) for my 1971 LeMans, 462 cubic inch. I paid about $1000 going to Germany and about $1500 coming out. If you ship with a private carrier, make sure you coordinate for transportation from the European port to somewhere near where you will be stationed or have the ability to redirect the car after you arrive. If you ship through Uncle Sam it won't be a problem and they do a pretty good job, you can even track your vehicle on-line. You won't be able to get your drivers license for about two weeks while you inprocess. If you ship the car about three weeks before you leave then the car will arrive just about the time you get your license.
Germans love the US Muscle and the first question is always "how many kilometers per liter?" My answer always was if you have to ask, you can't afford this car. Cost really isn't that bad depending on how close you are to a port. You are going to have to have wheels over there so instead of buying a beater BMW or Mercedes take the TA. You'll love finding a really open stretch of Autobahn are letting the car run!
Make absolutely sure your exhaust, tires, lights, suspension, and brakes (especially parking brake) are in top shape before you ship. The vehicle inspection that USAREUR does is pretty strict and if you fail you may end up waiting a while to get parts to get it fixed during which time you won't be driving. If you are insured by USAA transfering your insurance to Europe is really easy, they will send your proof of insurance direct to the vehicle registry office. Anyone else, you need to get your double white cards (proof of insurance) before you depart the states.
Your easiest sale will be to a fellow GI since they won't have any conversion issues. Germans will have to change or modify the tail lights. You can sell to a local national and get a decent price but it isn't going to make you rich. You'd be surprised how many German and Swiss car clubs there are that specialize in American Cars. Big Mustang club in the Kaiserslautern area and big Pontiac club in Switzerland. Gas price for you won't be an issue since you will buy your gas through AAFES. Insurance will be about the same as New Jersey.
If you have any other questions just ask.
06-04-2010, 02:19 PM #802 CETA #654 7800 miles
09 G8 GT liquid red, sport/premium/sunroof red/black int
07 Tahoe LS
...you'll know it's me when I come through your town
I'm gonna ride around in style, I'm gonna drive everybody wild
'cause I'll have the only one there is around
06-05-2010, 11:22 AM #9
Yeah, that is good info. I disagree slightly on the need for a car. The fine country of Germany has a lot of public transportation. If he's stationed in an area full of trains and buses and/or he isn't going to leave the base much, maybe he could do without. Also, I wonder if it would be possible to get a good deal on a German car to be shipped back when the 'vacation' is over.
06-05-2010, 05:40 PM #10
Trust me guys, there is public transport but he will need wheels. Most of the military installations are broken up into multiple small parts spread out over an area and we have recently closed down a lot of the former US installations making it much further from one base to another. German trains and buses do not go from US military installation to US military installation.
Many of the GIs sell their nice car in the states only to find that they just end up buying another new car there or living with a POS used and abused car for their tour. Better to take a reliable car that you already have and enjoy it. If this is his only car, Uncle Sam pays for the shipping so no issue.
As for bringing cars back yes you can. You can buy US Spec cars and motorcycles through dealers that sell to GIs and diplomats and ship them back, many even have ship home programs. You can also buy through the military exchange service. It only cost me about $500 to ship my new BMW back.
You can buy an old european specification car (25 years and older) and not have to deal with federal DOT stamdards but you will get jammed up if you have local state inspections and it will be a bitch to register the first time since they don't have the same title system as we do. If you buy a newer euro spec car you have to pay to get conversion work done (bumpers, glass, emissions, lighting systems) before you can take posession and it usually isn't worth the cost.
BTW, I'm an career MP Officer and my last job in Germany from 2005-2006 was in the US Army Europe Provost Marshal's office in Mannheim. One of our sections was the European vehicle registry so I'm pretty familiar with the rules.
I've seen some real disasters over my 11 years in Germany. One of the worst was a kid getting ready to ship his 3rd Gen TA back. He had put a lot of money and work into it and in the process had stripped all of the emissions parts out. I asked where he was headed back to and he told me California. I asked him how he thought he was going to get it registered since they are pretty tight on the emissions controls. He hadn't even considered it while he was happily tossing all of the emissions parts. This was clearly going to cost him a bunch to fix or he would have to dump the car out of state.
Bottom line, take the car, enjoy on the unlimited sections of the autobahn but follow the rules everywhere else, sell if you find something better!
06-06-2010, 08:56 AM #11
You'd think Colby would chime in.... Okay, needing a car to move within a large 'installment' makes sense. This is getting off topic and might sound more contentious than it is, but why would a typical military person not stationed in a combat zone need to drive a private vehicle back and forth between bases? As in not part of a convoy, for example. I have some family familiarity with the military and don't know of relatives traveling like that while serving.
Closer to the topic, or at least the interest of readers, having confirmed that deals on European cars can be had, it sounds like an enterprising military man could do a favor for someone he knows in the States. Unless, of course, the military actively opposes that.
Last edited by clovenhooves; 06-06-2010 at 08:59 AM.
06-06-2010, 09:43 AM #12
Living in Germany is a lot more like living in the states than you would think. However, there are times when if you are stationed on a smaller installation you will want to travel to a larger installation to shop, go to different clubs, or just visit friends. We frequently travelled from Mannheim to Heidelberg when our commisary didn't have something we wanted or out to Ramstein when we wanted to shop at the larger Post Exchange. You also will want to travel out across the country just to see things. I frequently just got out and drove around castle spotting or poking around some of the really cool small towns.
As to the cars, you can get enterprising but there are limits. You can not use the military mail to run a business (it clogs up the military mail system and cheats customs). If you do try to run a business back to the states through the German post office you will get hit pretty hard with both postage and customs that pretty much makes it not worth while. We had more than a few folks think they could use e-bay and the military postal system but our customs guys are pretty good at monitoring that and catching them. You can sell your personal stuff but as soon as you try to run a business you get busted and lose your military postal privileges, possibly get turned over to German Customs, and other bad things.
There are times when you can get some great deals on parts. I had a 2005 Mini Cooper for a while and I could buy parts much cheaper through the dealer in Germany and even get some parts that just weren't available in the states. See above for why it wasn't worth selling back to anyone in the states.
Something else I took advantage of was using the German, Swiss, and British e-bay for finding old US car parts pretty cheap. You'd be surprised what is out there and the competition is lower since there are less folks looking for a specific part.
06-06-2010, 10:36 AM #13
Thank you guys so much for all of your opinions and responses. As a a matter of fact, I am reporting to Mannheim. All of this information has been very helpful in determining what to do from here. My T/A is one of a few cars that I have and I was just trying to see if it was worth the trouble of paying to ship to it since I have to take a family car that I have. Once again, thank you all for your input!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
06-06-2010, 03:00 PM #14
If you ship your car through a private shipper, when you get to Mannheim you will have to go to Ben Franklin Village for in-processing for two weeks. Grab a taxi or a friend with a car and go to the Cox Agency. They are located just past the Audi dealer on the left side of B38 as you head into town. The address is on Volklinger Str. They are also a Hertz rental agency (will help to find the sign).
Now, why the heck would you want to find them? They can arrange delivery from your shipper from the port of entry directly to Mannheim. Bremmerhaven is over 450 KM away (about a 6 hour drive). Of course it will cost a bit for their services but by my calculations it was less than it would have cost me to take the train to the port, spend the night in a hotel, hope I had the right paperwork to pick up the car then drive it all the way back.
Good luck and enjoy Mannheim! Hopefully you already know that the community is in the process of closing. Don't know how much longer it will last but our remaining friends there report that services are slowly going away and the remaining units are moving.
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