Importing Canadian Spec 1984 BJ60 into California

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Aug 14, 2017
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Reno, NV
Hello there,

This is my first post on this forum and i'm excited to be on here and even more excited to pick up my diesel Landcruiser in about 10 days from now.

First off, I have read and googled and searched lots of IH8Mud threads regarding registering a Diesel LandCruiser in CA but I haven't come up with anything too conclusive yet for my situation. I'm importing a Canadian spec 1984 BJ60 into California from Canada. A lot of what i've read suggests registering out of state first but these seem to be focusing on cars NOT originally for the North American market. Registering out of state IS an option for me, but it would be nice to avoid.

In my readings, I have picked up tidbits and possible references suggesting that because my soon-to-be vehicle (deposit paid) is a North-American/Canadian-spec vehicle with a 17 digit VIN and a VIN plate on the door jamb, that I might be able to breeze my way through the California DMV when I go to register it. I am importing the car myself (flying to Calgary and driving home) and the import should be easy, but what i've read is fairly unclear because it hasn't addressed specifically importing an original Canadian model to California.

Any help is greatly appreciated.

Cheers to my first post and to many more,
-Garrett
 
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I imported an 82 bj60 from Canada into California. No problems with customs but now stuck with California DMV.
I got the dreaded request for manufacturer compliance letter. Its seems the 25 year federal exemption doesn't fly in California
 
Joined
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Reno, NV
I imported an 82 bj60 from Canada into California. No problems with customs but now stuck with California DMV.
I got the dreaded request for manufacturer compliance letter. Its seems the 25 year federal exemption doesn't fly in California
Same with the 1984 I imported.... Looks like I may be registering in Nevada... I wish i had done that first...
 
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I thought about Nevada as i have family there but they require smog on diesels and I don't like that.

It looks like an option is to take it too a registered importer. or another option is to have one if these outfits open a Montana LLC and register there for a year.
 
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I was worried about smog testing my hj61 in AZ but it passed with flying colors. I would assume NV would be similar. I don't know how smog testing works or what they look for since these engines never sold in the USA . I have to do the smog thing every year never had an issue.
 
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Same with the 1984 I imported.... Looks like I may be registering in Nevada... I wish i had done that first...
I am learning as I am going thru this process.
AS far as I can tell whats gets us in trouble with California DMV is the vehicle inspection requirements of REG31.

When the DMV inspected my BJ60 they did not find an emissions sticker under the hood and recorded on the REG31. That prompted the suspension and letter requesting manufacturer letter of compliance.

After talking to a Registered Importer it seems they would be able to provide the necessary sticker if you import thru them.

I guess hindsight is 20/20.
 

SteveJackson

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After talking to a Registered Importer it seems they would be able to provide the necessary sticker if you import thru them.

I guess hindsight is 20/20.
You can have it brought into compliance for CARB standards, the same thing an RI would do, there's only one place in California that does it: California Environmental Engineering. There are ways around it, but if your VIN is already flagged then your only choices are to pay for compliance testing/modifications or registering out of state. :(
 
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UPDATE: My 1984 BJ60 Land Cruiser is now registered in California. I originally thought I was going to be served the usual ish of not being able to register since it took so long to hear from DMV and everyone else seems to have bad luck here. It turns out I was wrong. I received my license plates and title about 3 days ago; just 7 days before my temporary registration was due to expire.

I took all of my info to the CA DMV after driving my vehicle back from Canada. The lady at the DMV charged me for taxes and registration, and she sent my paperwork off to Sacramento. Nearly 3 months later, I finally received my title, plates, and registration tags.

I believe I got lucky, but some or all of the following may have been a contributor to me getting registration in CA:
-I registered the vehicle in Alberta after purchasing it.
-The lady at the DMV charged me for registration prior to sending my paperwork away. Maybe because I already paid the registration, the state couldn't deny it to me later on?
-I got lucky and the state DMV person in Sacramento either messed up or was lenient.

Do you all have any thoughts on why I got to register but others are not able to?

-Garrett
 
Joined
Aug 17, 2017
Messages
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Location
Orange County ca
UPDATE: My 1984 BJ60 Land Cruiser is now registered in California. I originally thought I was going to be served the usual ish of not being able to register since it took so long to hear from DMV and everyone else seems to have bad luck here. It turns out I was wrong. I received my license plates and title about 3 days ago; just 7 days before my temporary registration was due to expire.

I took all of my info to the CA DMV after driving my vehicle back from Canada. The lady at the DMV charged me for taxes and registration, and she sent my paperwork off to Sacramento. Nearly 3 months later, I finally received my title, plates, and registration tags.

I believe I got lucky, but some or all of the following may have been a contributor to me getting registration in CA:
-I registered the vehicle in Alberta after purchasing it.
-The lady at the DMV charged me for registration prior to sending my paperwork away. Maybe because I already paid the registration, the state couldn't deny it to me later on?
-I got lucky and the state DMV person in Sacramento either messed up or was lenient.

Do you all have any thoughts on why I got to register but others are not able to?

-Garrett
From what i could tell one of three things happened
1. When they inspected car they didn't record lack of emission sticker on reg 31.
2. DMV might not have caught that inspector tagged lack of sticker
3. Someone put emission sticker under hood prior to inspection.

Regardless I am jealous
 
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Orange County ca
I finally got the letter from Toyota and California DMV approved My bj60 is officially registered in California. 4 months of my life i can never get back LOL
 
Joined
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Messages
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Location
Reno, NV
I finally got the letter from Toyota and California DMV approved My bj60 is officially registered in California. 4 months of my life i can never get back LOL
Thats fantastic news! I'm glad to know I will no longer be the only one driving the SLOWEST car on earth :p Is your BJ60 that brown colored one that was posted on nor cal craigslist for a while?
Edit: Probably not since your bio says Orange county

Happy new year, enjoy the Cruiser!
 
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