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Old 08-17-2014, 09:36 AM   #1
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Importing a SMB to Canada

Hi, does anyone know if its possible to purchas a SMB van in the US and import to Canada, or have any helpful information on how to pull this off.
Thanks
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Old 08-18-2014, 05:28 AM   #2
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Re: Importing a SMB to Canada

Bonjour,

C'est possible mais compliqué lorsque le véhicule à moins de 25 d'âge. J'ai importé de la Suède un camion Volkswagen il y a quelques années mais il avait plus de 25 ans. Étant donné que le véhicule provient des États-Unis, probablement qu'il rencontre les normes de Transport Canada. Sur le site de TC, il y a je crois la procédure pour importer. De mon côté je vais plutôt me convertir un camion en prenant le meilleur de tous les fabricants de ce type de véhicule, soit New-West, Safari Condo et sportsmobile. Il faut être habile mais ça vaut la peine. Actuellement j'ai un SC de 20 pieds 2007.

Bonne journée

Yanick
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Old 08-18-2014, 03:08 PM   #3
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Re: Importing a SMB to Canada

Hi Michel,

It may be possible (there was/is one recently for sale in the Montreal area), but I think it's difficult. The main problem is that SMB usually starts with an incomplete vehicle (and thus an incomplete VIN) from Ford, Chevy, MB, etc. After they convert the van, SMB then completes the VIN. The Registrar of Imported Vehicles (RIV) in Canada doesn't recognize these SMB-completed VINs as importable vehicles - there is an extensive list (see here: https://www.riv.ca/VehicleAdmissibility.aspx), including many aftermarket motorhome manufacturers, but, alas, SMB is not one of them.

However, some people purchase their vans before taking them to SMB, and therefore they would have a complete VIN identifying the vehicle as a stock van. If you are looking at used, and can find one of these, they may be easier to import. If you are looking at a new build, I would consider this approach (buy the stock van, then take it to SMB); however, I would suggest you do your research to ensure the final product is importable.

The 25-year thing that Yannick mentioned is for non-NAFTA vehicles. If the vehicle was manufactured in North America (and is on RIV's list, most are), it is a very simple process to import a stock van or any vehicle - pay PST/HST; pay a small brokerage fee; add DRL, kmh markings, English/French safety labels, and away you go. Our van was purchased in Portland as a stock cargo van, and I imported it into Canada relatively pain-free. I then had it converted by GTRV in the Vancouver area.

Hope this helps.

Brent
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Old 08-18-2014, 03:29 PM   #4
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Re: Importing a SMB to Canada

Thanks for the info Brent,

I've emailed GTRV in BC, but no reply yet. I also was thinking of them as well. Were you happy with the work they did? I'd be interested to hear what you had done, or things you would have done differently, and see som pics as well. One of my other ideas is purchasing the van here and going to them for a conversion.
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Old 08-19-2014, 12:55 PM   #5
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Re: Importing a SMB to Canada

Easiest route would be to find an existing one already in Canada. Another way to do it quite simply is to find a 1999. 15 year rule and you're exempt from RIV and Transport Canada regs. Just pay duties. You should check with your province and see what is required to pass inspection and how to get it insured, however.
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Old 08-19-2014, 02:16 PM   #6
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Re: Importing a SMB to Canada

Quote:
Originally Posted by michelrobitaille
Were you happy with the work they did?
Very happy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by michelrobitaille
I'd be interested to hear what you had done, or things you would have done differently, and see som pics as well.
I have a build thread here: GTRV Conversion on a Ford E350 EB

Let me know if you have any questions about our van, either here or in my build thread. The only significant thing I would change is to use awning-type windows instead of the T-sliders.

Cheers,
Brent
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