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When it comes to moving to a new country, moving your car can cause more than a headache. What formalities do I have to go through? What taxes do I have to pay? Which companies can arrange transportation for my car?

We will try to answer all these questions. Because sometimes the good life goes on wheels to run smoothly. 🚗

Procedures for importing a car into Spain

Bureaucracy is indeed a drag, but it is also necessary. Follow these steps to get all the paperwork in order and the process will be much more efficient.

Gathering the vehicle’s documentation

To import a car into Spain, you must have all the documentation in order. The documents you need are:

  • Sales contract. If you purchased it from a private individual, make sure you ask for a photocopy of their passport, telephone number and place of residence. If you bought it from a dealer, as is usually the case, the invoice must contain the company’s VAT number.
  • Vehicle data sheet. This is like the car’s identity card, and is issued, authorised and supervised by the Ministry of Industry. It contains the approval certificate, the owner’s ID number, the make, version, model and trade name of the vehicle, the license plate, tyre dimensions, car dimensions, maximum authorized mass, engine characteristics, VIN, number of seats and tare weight.
  • Certificate of conformity, attesting that the car passes the MOT test in the country of origin.
  • Photocopy of the seller’s passport or identity card and contact details. If you are a foreigner, you must obtain an official sworn translation.

Transporting the car

Once you have purchased the car and obtained all the documents we have just mentioned, you are ready for the last step: transporting it to Spain. This is where economic and logistical criteria come in. You might want to bring it yourself if you come from the European Union. Another option is to transport it by truck or boat. It all depends on the conditions they offer you, but we do advise you to negotiate as much as possible with the shipping company so that costs do not go through the roof.

But do not let this deter you. It is worth enjoying the paradises on the Spanish coast by making a road trip.

Importing a car into Spain

Passing the ITV, the Spanish equivalent of the MOT test

Good! Your car has arrived safely in Spain. Congratulations! The hardest part is over. Now it is time to pass the Spanish MOT or ITV so that it is considered fit to circulate on our roads.

To pass this test, you must provide the following documents:

  • Proof of vehicle ownership
  • Proof of payment of fees and taxes
  • Driver’s license of the owner
  • Vehicle insurance policy
  • Vehicle data sheet

Associated taxes

That is right, to import a car into Spain it is also necessary to pay taxes. There are not many of them, but the important thing is to be aware of their existence:

  • Registration tax on foreign vehicles. It corresponds to Form 576.
  • VAT for new vehicles or the Property Transfer Tax for second hand ones. If your car is from outside the EU, you will not pay VAT or PPT, but rather the SAD or Single Administrative Document, which is a tax on the entry into the country of an imported good.
  • Circulation tax, which varies depending on the Town Hall where you are registered.
  • Expenses associated with the change of ownership, so that the car is in your name. This is done at the Directorate-General for Traffic (DGT).

Good! Now it is officially YOUR CAR!

Register the vehicle

If the car does not have European plates, you will have to register it in Spain and change the plates. And of course pay the registration fee.

You will have to make an appointment at the Traffic Headquarters (Jefatura de Tráfico) of the place where you are registered and present the following documents:

  • The regulatory application form, available at the Traffic Headquarters.
  • Your NIE and proof of address.
  • Original and photocopy of the proof of payment of the municipal vehicle tax (municipal tax on mechanical traction vehicles or IVTM) and the registration tax (special tax on certain means of transport), both available at the Traffic Headquarters.
  • Proof of payment of VAT in the country of origin.
  • Invoice for the purchase of the vehicle.
  • Certificate of conformity provided by the manufacturer.

Do not worry, if everything is in order, carrying out all this will be a piece of cake. If you want to know more about the procedures that must be carried out when moving to Spain and living here we tell you all about it in our blog.

As you know, at Sonneil we want to help you live the good life on the Mediterranean coast. The sun, the light and the sea are waiting for you.