Importing Novice to the Arizona United States

Joined
Sep 14, 2016
Messages
82
Location
Cyprus
Hi Guys interested in bringing my 1994 HDJ81v to the states as I'm looking to move there soon there after.

Weighting on all options. Importing it being 25 years old this October seems a lot involved and looking to be there before this rule is qualified tbh and have little knowledge of all the hoops and costs. Would getting this with a 364 visitation permit for a year be easier than registering after the following year be better?

Any advice appreciated
 
Joined
Dec 16, 2015
Messages
259
Location
Arizona
Can not really speak on the permit. But i see plates and non usa spec vehicles with mexico plates all the time.. can not be that difficult.

I registstered my JDM cruiser in AZ and it was pretty straight forward. Just show the DMV the import paper work goto inspection location they tell you. You will get all the USA paperwork and a VIN. Depending if you live/work out of Phoenix or Tucson you will have to get a smog test done. Taxes will also apply. That's just a very small break down of what to expect but AZ is a very easy state to register vehicles in compared to others..
 

Terrax

 
 
Joined
May 29, 2003
Messages
303
Location
Pacifica, CA
So the vehicle needs to be taken to the DMV for an inspection? What are the smog laws in AZ for an 1980 FJ45 gas 2F from the Middle East?
 
Joined
Jun 15, 2014
Messages
49
Location
Outside Tucson, Arizona
If you wait until the vehicle hits its 25-year mark it will be easy to import it. We had no trouble bringing in our '85 Defender, and will bring in our '93 Troopy when we've done a couple more trips with it in Africa. We have an address in the county outside Tucson, so we do not need an emissions test. There was a very simple inspection at our local DMV (for working lights, etc.) and that was it.
 
Joined
Sep 14, 2016
Messages
82
Location
Cyprus
Thanks for the reply Johnathan... What do you need to import the vehicle i.e to prove the 25 years. Only ask this as the vehicle was imported from Japan in 1997 on the log book but vin number online says October 1994?

If you wait until the vehicle hits its 25-year mark it will be easy to import it. We had no trouble bringing in our '85 Defender, and will bring in our '93 Troopy when we've done a couple more trips with it in Africa. We have an address in the county outside Tucson, so we do not need an emissions test. There was a very simple inspection at our local DMV (for working lights, etc.) and that was it.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Jun 15, 2014
Messages
49
Location
Outside Tucson, Arizona
The title with VIN and date of manufacture will be sufficient. You should also have a plate on the vehicle with that information, but they'll want the paperwork to match. Then you'll need U.S. Customs form HS-7 for the importation.
 
Joined
Jan 25, 2018
Messages
37
Location
Okinawa, JP
All,

I am in Okinawa and I'll be shipping my '94 (March manufacture date) Prado in June, taking delivery in San Diego then transporting to my new duty station in Yuma, AZ. I've been looking for folks with experience importing their cruisers into AZ, this thread is great.

Sounds like the DMV doesn't need anything too out of the ordinary to register the truck there, so that's really good news. Has anyone had to have their original title translated into English? Been thinking about having that done here before I leave.

Also, how has insurance worked out for you? Will any company be willing to insure the vehicle or is there something I am not thinking of (Classic car, lack of airbags and safety features, etc. that will complicate the insurance process)

Thanks in advance!
 
Joined
Dec 16, 2015
Messages
259
Location
Arizona
All,

I am in Okinawa and I'll be shipping my '94 (March manufacture date) Prado in June, taking delivery in San Diego then transporting to my new duty station in Yuma, AZ. I've been looking for folks with experience importing their cruisers into AZ, this thread is great.

Sounds like the DMV doesn't need anything too out of the ordinary to register the truck there, so that's really good news. Has anyone had to have their original title translated into English? Been thinking about having that done here before I leave.

Also, how has insurance worked out for you? Will any company be willing to insure the vehicle or is there something I am not thinking of (Classic car, lack of airbags and safety features, etc. that will complicate the insurance process)

Thanks in advance!
I am assuming you are affiliated with the military in some way..

I did the same thing brought an hj61 back from Misawa and registered in AZ. When you get notification to pick up in san Diego goto the dmv with all your paperwork and they should give you a 30 day registration so you can legally drive back from CA. That flight/drive to CA is a tdy and should be reimbusered by mileage. Bring some tape with you so you can attach it to your back window. For insurance i use USAA full coverage is cheap but i have no clue how that will pay out if it got totaled. They used the original vin (added some zeros) until i got a new vin from the DMV. So i could drive it back from CA.

After that you get an inspection at the dmv they give you an american VIN and you are all set.

Out in yuma you may be exempt from smog testing which is nice. But even so you will pass with no issues. My cruiser smokes like crazy and passes with flying colors.

Let me know if you have any questions and i can try to answer them for u. Check your messages as well.
 
Joined
Jun 15, 2014
Messages
49
Location
Outside Tucson, Arizona
All,

I am in Okinawa and I'll be shipping my '94 (March manufacture date) Prado in June, taking delivery in San Diego then transporting to my new duty station in Yuma, AZ. I've been looking for folks with experience importing their cruisers into AZ, this thread is great.

Sounds like the DMV doesn't need anything too out of the ordinary to register the truck there, so that's really good news. Has anyone had to have their original title translated into English? Been thinking about having that done here before I leave.

Also, how has insurance worked out for you? Will any company be willing to insure the vehicle or is there something I am not thinking of (Classic car, lack of airbags and safety features, etc. that will complicate the insurance process)

Thanks in advance!
The more you can do to smooth the way for U.S. Customs people, the easier it will be for you. Having both the original and a translated title makes sense.

Insurance shouldn't be a problem. Our Defender is insured for stated value through State Farm. We'll do the same for the Troopy when it arrives, as it has had a bunch of modifications.
 
Joined
Jan 25, 2018
Messages
37
Location
Okinawa, JP
The more you can do to smooth the way for U.S. Customs people, the easier it will be for you. Having both the original and a translated title makes sense.

Insurance shouldn't be a problem. Our Defender is insured for stated value through State Farm. We'll do the same for the Troopy when it arrives, as it has had a bunch of modifications.
That's great to hear! Thanks so much for the input!
 
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