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Subject Topic: Japanese Import Post Reply Post New Topic
Message posted by thebiz via mobile 02/8/2021 at 9:20am
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Are there any downsides to buying a Japanese import campervan from a dealer? Specifically a Nissan nv200.

Im assuming the radio, sat nav problems will have been sorted and on the plus side they are automatics.

As the model is also available as a British registered van, Id also assume that parts etc are readily available but are there any hidden difficulties I should be aware of eg insurance ?



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Zymocenosilicaphobia-excessive fear of an empty beer glass

' When I die, I will return to seek the moments I did not live by the sea'

Message posted by Finder02/8/2021 at 9:34am
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Grey imports. As long as the UK paperwork is all done. DVLA registered, taxes paid etc, there is no problem usually with an import. I have owned and know many drivers of grey imports. No problems whatsoever.

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Message posted by birdman101 via mobile 02/8/2021 at 11:10am
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My neighbour used to import them and none used to have rear fog lights He had to fit these before taking them to a gov testing station so he could obtain log sheets for them.

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Now 49 year Caravanning completed.

Message posted by thebiz via mobile 02/8/2021 at 11:36am
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Thanks very much for your replies, very reassuring.
Ill put them on my list of possibilities .



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Zymocenosilicaphobia-excessive fear of an empty beer glass

' When I die, I will return to seek the moments I did not live by the sea'

Message posted by Lostdreamer05/8/2021 at 12:23pm
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Quote: Are there any downsides to buying a Japanese import campervan from a dealer?



Yes.
It's the japanese spec vehicle, not the UK spec.

The differences are usually trivial, which one exception:
Corrosion resistance. We salt our roads in winter, and many other countries don't. So imported vehicles can have significant rot problems.
This isn't likely to be a problem if you get it fresh off the boat and get it waxoiled immediately (and every few years thereafter) but be very careful about the condition of anything that has been in the UK for any length of time.

The other issue you can run into is service/maintence. If it's something that wasn't sold in the UK at all, then no UK dealers will have a clue how to work on it. Parts supply can also be patchy - but that's less of an issue than it developing faults nobody knows how to fix. It's still a fairly minor issue if you know your way around spanners yourself and are prepared to put the garage time in, or know a good independent garage you can trust to do work that may not be entirely straightforward.

Also, it's not a uk car so needs specialist insurance.


I had a Mitsubishi Delica for a while. Lovely car, i miss it dearly. But don't believe anyone who tells you that there is no difference between a grey market vehicle and the pukka UK equivalent.

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My opinion is worth exactly what you paid for it.

Motorhome Protect - Get a motorhome or campervan quote - call 01865 818345
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Message posted by Colin2105/8/2021 at 12:47pm
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I used to have a Mazda Bongo, which was a grey import. In my opinion, the best thing to do is look if the make/model has an owners club in the UK, as they can be an invaluable source of info, and possibly spare parts. A lot of vehicles share parts, but it's often a case of knowing which parts are shared and someone in the owners clubs invariably will. It's what I did when I had my Bongo, and I had no problem at all getting parts for it. I used to do most of my own work on vehicles back then, and I found it not that difficult a vehicle to work on.

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Colin

Message posted by thebiz via mobile 07/8/2021 at 9:40am
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Thanks again for replies, its best to know potential pitfalls before taking the plunge .

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Zymocenosilicaphobia-excessive fear of an empty beer glass

' When I die, I will return to seek the moments I did not live by the sea'

Message posted by Bob6107/8/2021 at 10:40am
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I don't know anything about imported cars or campervans but I have driven Nissans for years and wouldn't buy anything else. Very reliable and the parts are readily available but they do eventually suffer with rusty chassis...but that is after many years. My Micra is 12 years old and no sign of rust yet.

Message posted by Colin2107/8/2021 at 10:27pm
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Quote: Originally posted by Bob61 on 07/8/2021
I don't know anything about imported cars or campervans but I have driven Nissans for years and wouldn't buy anything else. Very reliable and the parts are readily available but they do eventually suffer with rusty chassis...but that is after many years. My Micra is 12 years old and no sign of rust yet.



Likewise with my X Trail Bob, and that is now 13 years old.


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Colin

Message posted by Bob6108/8/2021 at 2:13pm
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Never failed an MOT either <frantically grabbing hold of wooden table>

Motorhome Protect - Get a motorhome or campervan quote - call 01865 818345
From adventures in Europe, to summertime retreats in the UK - there is no better way to experience all this than in your motorhome or campervan. Get a quote today by calling our team on 01865 818345 or visit our website

Message posted by Bernie4708/8/2021 at 11:18pm
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My son had a grey import 4x4 and had several problems with spares. Whilst the car look the same as the UK version and had the same name, there were several internal differences.
The biggest problem was when the speedometer cable broke, it turned out that the UK version had an electronic speedo with no cable, so he had to have one imported at a hefty price.

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Bernie

Message posted by Colin2109/8/2021 at 10:29am
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Quote: Originally posted by Bernie47 on 08/8/2021
My son had a grey import 4x4 and had several problems with spares. Whilst the car look the same as the UK version and had the same name, there were several internal differences.
The biggest problem was when the speedometer cable broke, it turned out that the UK version had an electronic speedo with no cable, so he had to have one imported at a hefty price.



Sometimes it's just a case of finding alternatives, which is where the owners clubs come in handy. When I first bought my Mazda Bongo the speedo became faulty. It was a KM one converted to read in MPH. Apparently this was a common problem with them but easily solved as the speedo assembly from a Mazda 626 of the same era was an identical replacement. I got one from a scrapyard and it worked perfectly.


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Colin


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