Has anyone imported an Airhead BMW Bike?

Discussion in 'Airheads' started by montblanc97, Jan 9, 2020.

  1. montblanc97

    montblanc97 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2012
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    242
    Location:
    Cleveland, Ohio
    I'm looking to purchase a BMW R80 G/S and I noticed that there were several for sale in the UK. Has anyone imported a bike from the UK? Is it a difficult process? Worth it? Any and all advice is appreciated. Thanks!
    #1
  2. Solo Lobo

    Solo Lobo airhead or nothing Supporter

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    Just buy mine! LOL, sent you a PM
    #2
  3. Airhead Wrangler

    Airhead Wrangler Long timer Supporter

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    Back in Seattle, FINALLY
    I imported a R100GSPD that I bought while living in Mexico. No issues, but then again it also started life as a US bike. It was sold new in Idaho.
    #3
  4. Mark Manley

    Mark Manley Long timer

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    I looked into registering my UK registered G/S in the US and as it was over 25 years old was entirely possible although it looked more difficult in California where I was planning to keep it than other states. From memory you need to declare it to customs who asses its value and charge you import duty, they will then give you the paperwork needed by the DMV to start the registration process. You will need the UK Registration document to prove its age, vehicles over 25 are exempt from many emission and other US compliance regulations which is what makes it possible but the process varies from state to state.
    As to the cost of buying in the UK and importing I would say it is not worth it, prices here vary between £5000 and £15,000 with about $1,000 to ship plus import duty and registration fees, the only modification they will need is a right dipping headlight as they should already have an MPH speedo.
    I found the best source of information on this was a Japanese car owners forum where they talked at length about importing older Japanese sports cars that were not sold in the US.
    #4
  5. usgser

    usgser Long timer

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    If it's not at least 25 years old it will have to prove it meets US EPA/DOT specs to even get it off the us customs dock. If older than 25 US customs isn't a problem but getting a title and road plates may still be in your state. Do your homework with the powers in charge (not internet forums) "before" signing/sending money. Figuring transport/shipping/paperwork etc it's generally cheaper unless it's some rare investment bike to just buy one already in the US.
    #5
  6. groop

    groop So much to ponder

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    I think by definition all R80 GS variants are at least 25 years old at this point
    #6
  7. Mark Manley

    Mark Manley Long timer

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    All R80G/S will be but the last few R80GS were sold in 1997 in Europe.
    #7
  8. ccmickelson

    ccmickelson MonoMania Supporter

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    The g/s's I've seen for sale online in the UK are considerably higher priced than those for sale throughout Europe. Shipping would probably be the expensive part.
    #8