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Can I cross the border to texas with a mexican car ?

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I am US citizen and I Want to buy a new Mexican plated car from a Mexican car dealership  but I don't know if I can cross the border with the car. The car would be under my name and with insurance, I do not live in Mexico or have dual citizenship, I live in Texas. Can I get in trouble? or What can I do?

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Yes you can.  The Mexican insurance policy you get, make sure you have the liability coverage for travel in the US. You also will need to monitor how long you have it in Texas.  There is a limitation on how long you can keep it there before it has to be brought back into Mexico.  Depending on the make and model as well as safety certification it may not be eligible for importation into the US on a permanent basis.  

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6 hours ago, Julian999 said:

I am US citizen and I Want to buy a new Mexican plated car from a Mexican car dealership  but I don't know if I can cross the border with the car. The car would be under my name and with insurance, I do not live in Mexico or have dual citizenship, I live in Texas. Can I get in trouble? or What can I do?

You can´t buy a Mexican car and keep it Texas without importing into the USA legally. They will not really bother you until they notice you have the car there for months on end and the police might tell you you need to register it in Texas, which you can´t, or take it back to Mexico. Bad idea.

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You will need insurance for both countries and must be in Mexico to re-register the car each year.  You will also need to establish a Mexican address, etc., to even try to do it.

Bad idea, for sure.

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It can be done, but for what reason? There is little chance that anyone will bother you for having the car in the U.S, and if stopped, you show them a valid U.S. insurance policy and "tell" them that you travel back and forth to your Mexican Residence and that should suffice. You will have to go in (or have someone go) to renew your tag annually with or without the car, that is easy and you will hopefully acquire Mexican auto insurance for your travels in country. Of course the State of Texas wants you to register your car there if that is your legal residence and that could prove to be problematic over time, but who knows if it will happen. It can be done, but why?? 

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Just taking a guess here. With the value of the peso it is quite a bit less expensive to buy a new car in Mexico right now. For instance a brand new Honda CRV fully loaded is 419,900p or about $22,560usd. Cost of the same car in the U.S. Is over $29,000. 

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The reality is: If you live in Texas and drive the car around your local area, it will quickly attract the attention of the local fuzz and the DEA, etc.  They will quickly determine that you live in Texas and probably nail you for not registering the car, which you cannot, in Texas within something like 30 days, since you are a resident.  If you were not a resident, you could drive it in the USA for up to a year.

Not a good idea unless you have a residence visa for Mexico and, probably, no residence in Texas.  A Mexican drivers license might also help.....for awhile.

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While this is not a vote 'for' doing what you want to do.... it is a bad idea from every angle except maybe the price of the new vehicle...... I am not in the camp that says that every malady known to man is going to befall you immediately if you try this. It is perfectly legal to drive a Mexican plated vehicle into the US, AND keep it there for up to 1 year.... as a visitor. Plus in Texas and Arizona and California there are a ton of Mexican plated cars and IMO it is not going to draw attention in the least. And once past the border area (you didn't say where you lived in Texas) the DEA is not going to be out patrolling for gringos driving Mexican plated vehicles. Additionally, one cannot be 'stopped' by law enforcement for merely having foreign plated vehicles.... something else must cause the stop and only then can the subject of the plates come up.

Having said all of that, yours is still a bad idea and will take some 'lies' to pull off if stopped for something else (I would never tell a law enforcement person that I owned a home in Mexico when I really didn't!! but YMMV). I recently brought a Jalisco-plated vehicle into the US. When I got Mexican Insurance on it in Ajijic I asked to have a US Liability only rider attached so that I would have insurance once in the US. They gave it to me. Later, when I looked at the rider, it clearly stated that this insurance was for a 'resident of Mexico'... which I am not. I don't know if this is what all riders say, but anyone intent on acquiring said coverage from a Mexican source might want to check. Nothing like thinking you have the required Liability insurance when in fact you really don't.

 

 

 

 

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Another point is can one get full coverage for a Mexican plated vehicle being driven in the US.  I would not be comfortable with a brand new vehicle and only liability coverage, if even that can be obtained in the OP's situation.

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Also the Honda CRV sold here may not be the same as a CRV sold in the USA. A factory may manufacture 3 or 4 variations of the exact same model depending on the country it is bound for.  Mexico uses the European standard for both safety and emissions which is very different than the USA or Canada.  That is why we have so many models here that are not available in the USA/Canada. 

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24 minutes ago, bournemouth said:

Another point is can one get full coverage for a Mexican plated vehicle being driven in the US.  I would not be comfortable with a brand new vehicle and only liability coverage, if even that can be obtained in the OP's situation.

I tried to get full coverage but the Insurance company (Qualitas) would NOT cover me for that... only Liability.

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12 hours ago, Julian999 said:

I am US citizen and I Want to buy a new Mexican plated car from a Mexican car dealership  but I don't know if I can cross the border with the car. The car would be under my name and with insurance, I do not live in Mexico or have dual citizenship, I live in Texas. Can I get in trouble? or What can I do?

I'm just curious: If you say you don't live in Mexico, but are living in Texas, why would you want a Mexican plated car instead of a Texas plated U.S purchased car?

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A DEA officer, attached to a local police force, took and interest in our Jalisco plated vehicle in North Carolina.....Quite a distance from the Mexican border.  Nice conversation, but we were just visiting a relative‘s house.  While enroute, we were never stopped or questioned, but when parked in a residential area, there he was; very curious and trying to run our plates. That did not work and frustrated him.  :P

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A Mexican car built for the Mexican market can not be imported to the US.  Different safety standards and pollution control equipment.  But cheaper . . .

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4 hours ago, bournemouth said:

Another point is can one get full coverage for a Mexican plated vehicle being driven in the US.  I would not be comfortable with a brand new vehicle and only liability coverage, if even that can be obtained in the OP's situation.

We add and remove our Mexican-plated vehicle to our policy with our stateside agent and insurer, but also maintain a US address and other covered vehicles year-round, but this might be the same situation with the OP.

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I have to say this i was able to skirt the entire situation.

What I did was simple I bought a porsche 911 in Mexico for $69999pesos ($35,000 usa)

It was a great deal, now the tricky part (don't lie to an insurance company, buy a bonded title in maine, maine does not require inspection, it cost me $300 for a bonded title, I went through an out of state registration service and I was able to obtain maine plates through the mail I sent them to my friends house, he forwarded them to me, when I got to Tijuana I put them on the car, and I put the mexican plates in the trunk, I was stopped, and pulled to secondary I showed them the registration of the car, and it had Maine Plates they waved me right through. I still have this car in the USA 2 years later.

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1 hour ago, redsfv89 said:

I have to say this i was able to skirt the entire situation.

What I did was simple I bought a porsche 911 in Mexico for $69999pesos ($35,000 usa)

It was a great deal, now the tricky part (don't lie to an insurance company, buy a bonded title in maine, maine does not require inspection, it cost me $300 for a bonded title, I went through an out of state registration service and I was able to obtain maine plates through the mail I sent them to my friends house, he forwarded them to me, when I got to Tijuana I put them on the car, and I put the mexican plates in the trunk, I was stopped, and pulled to secondary I showed them the registration of the car, and it had Maine Plates they waved me right through. I still have this car in the USA 2 years later.

I like the way you did that!

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On 7/17/2016 at 11:52 AM, Joyfull said:

Just taking a guess here. With the value of the peso it is quite a bit less expensive to buy a new car in Mexico right now. For instance a brand new Honda CRV fully loaded is 419,900p or about $22,560usd. Cost of the same car in the U.S. Is over $29,000. 

You need to understand that a vehicle sold in Mexico is different. On the assembly line it is built for the country of destination.  Many times the exact same model will have fewer airbags etc. Also it might have a different emissions system.

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1 hour ago, Mostlylost said:

You need to understand that a vehicle sold in Mexico is different. On the assembly line it is built for the country of destination.  Many times the exact same model will have fewer airbags etc. Also it might have a different emissions system.

I disagree, we had friend that bought a Nissan Versa and had to sell it because he couldn't nationalize it in California, he bought the exact same car in California brand new again and he said the MX car was much better made and had more features and rode better than the US one.

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On 7/17/2016 at 11:52 AM, Joyfull said:

Just taking a guess here. With the value of the peso it is quite a bit less expensive to buy a new car in Mexico right now. For instance a brand new Honda CRV fully loaded is 419,900p or about $22,560usd. Cost of the same car in the U.S. Is over $29,000. 

You need to understand that a vehicle sold in Mexico is different. On the assembly line it is built for the country of destination.  Many times the exact same model will have fewer airbags etc. Also it might have a different emissions system.

 

4 hours ago, hensley said:

I disagree, we had friend that bought a Nissan Versa and had to sell it because he couldn't nationalize it in California, he bought the exact same car in California brand new again and he said the MX car was much better made and had more features and rode better than the US one.

In all respect you are disagreeing while in the same time stating that what I wrote was accurate.  Different levels of equipment in model packages. Different emissions, and safety equipment.  It could be the exact same model, but not the exact same car. If it was he could have nationalized it by having a licensed importer change the odometer and certify the safety and emissions equipment met California and US standards. I imported new cars from Canada to California many times so am very familiar with the process. Check Nissan's website MX and US for package content of a particular model of Versa....it is not the same.  As to better made, I would guess the Versa bought in California was made in Aguascalientes on the same assembly line. I would need to see the VIN, which in addition to the year, make, model, place of manufacture, sometimes codes the safety equipment. . 

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Some of the differences are not apparent.... like not having side impact or above window air bags.

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On 2/16/2017 at 7:26 PM, redsfv89 said:

I have to say this i was able to skirt the entire situation.

What I did was simple I bought a porsche 911 in Mexico for $69999pesos ($35,000 usa)

It was a great deal, now the tricky part (don't lie to an insurance company, buy a bonded title in maine, maine does not require inspection, it cost me $300 for a bonded title, I went through an out of state registration service and I was able to obtain maine plates through the mail I sent them to my friends house, he forwarded them to me, when I got to Tijuana I put them on the car, and I put the mexican plates in the trunk, I was stopped, and pulled to secondary I showed them the registration of the car, and it had Maine Plates they waved me right through. I still have this car in the USA 2 years later.

I'm curious... did this 911 originally come from the US (and had been imported into Mexico at some point) or was it originally sold in Mexico? If originally sold in Mexico it would not have met US standards.

Assuming you claimed to Maine that you did not have a title (that's one reason Maine will give you a bond), did they just accept that info to give a bond and then after obtaining the bond you were then able to turn that around to Maine and get a Maine title and plates.... or is there more to the story than that?

 

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Think about it.   If it was that simple everyone would do it.  Can't have your cake and eat to.  The piper will be paid somewhere down   the line. Pay me now or pay me latter.

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I did NOT under any circumstances lie to the insurance company I went through a company that does bonds, and told them I specifically bought a car without proper paper work.

Registration Company - http://haskellregistration.com/wordpress/vehicle-registration/

Bond Company - http://blog.suretysolutionsllc.com/suretynews/maine-bonded-title

I went through these companies, but it's important to call them and find out if anything has changed as this was some time ago. Also I under no circumstances asked them to ship anything to mexico as this would have been a red flag. The reason I chose Maine is the state does not require an inspection for out of state vehicles that are registered in Maine as this would have been an issue using a California bonded title.

 

The reason to avoid inspection is as follows

You have a foreign plated vehicle

Your vehicle may not meet emissions

You want to avoid them knowing your vehicle does not meet emissions or having dot approved glass, as this is a red flag.

The state of Maine Requires no Smog, so everything seemed like a win win at the time, now things may have changed those are my two references, do your own research as this was nearly 2 years ago, and in 1 more year the 911 will have an official title as maine only takes 3 years where other states take 5 years. Another thing to note, I used a mailbox store address, to have the plates shipped to me, thus if there is a problem in the future nobody has my address, the mailbox store is also on my license.

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OK but it looks like you, and Maine, bypassed the Federal requirement of 6 months maximum "residency" of a foreign vehicle in the U.S. after which it must be removed from the country or formally imported.  

It doesn't sound like you went through the full required importation procedure which includes EPA certification and Maine did not require you to do so.

You could probably do the same thing with South Dakota I'm guessing.  If the state doesn't require proof of meeting Federal requirements that would appear to open up a loophole to ignore them.

Am I correct about this?  Not criticizing, just curious.

As for Mexico vs. U.S. cars, our 2012 CRV definitely lacks in some areas according to the Honda dealer we got service with regularly when going to the Dallas area.  My own impression is this car is not quite as well made as the Japanese version we had previously.

 

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