How to nationalize an american car in Mexico

Hi! Do you know what a friend has to do to nationalize a 2004 American car in Mexico?

Thanks!

You take the car to a registered with ADUANA auto importer on the US Mexico border. They charge a fee, pay ADUANA the duty, get ADUANA to inspect it and you get a "pedimento". It is then nationalized. They get you a 15 day temporary transit permit from ADUANA. You then take the "pedimento" to get it registered in the state where you live and get plates.

Thanks a lot! Do you know which is the best ADUANA to take it?

Can the procedure be done without taking the car to the aduana? Is it legal?

By law you will need to hire a custom's agent.  Best bet is to drive into the US, stop at a used car dealership and ask. for them it is an everyday business transaction.
  we have a broker/lawyer working on vehicle # 3, in the past 10 years, doing the work without going to the border. it can be done but finding the honest agent while living in Mexico is not a small task.

Thanks!!

tapetapan, would you recommend stopping with a US vehicle to the used car dealership to have it nationalized for Mexico before entering?  Is that possible?  My final destination is Guadalajara area, I'm seeking a permanente status for a visa.

I brought my car in to Mexico this month. I crossed at Douglas Arizona. I would recommend giving yourself an extra day to do all the paperwork. They will accept Visa and Mastercard or cash. They want copies of your license,car paperwork, Mexican insurance information and you also need U.S. car insurance. If you are not as yet the legal owner of the car have all that paperwork also. I would leave the car in the parking lot and walk in to do the paperwork. You will go through two offices, first you and then the ADUANA for the car. I got the 6 month temporary import sticker for the car. If all is in order it may take 3-4 hours.

They really were not to interested in inspecting the car.
I would also warn you that the potholes and speed bumps are a legend and not often marked. So be sure you have good tires including a spare.

Thank you travelite.  So you did your transfer of plates from US to Mexico at the border?  With the ADUANA?

No I got the 6 month sticker to nationalize the car along with my visa. Plates are not that quick and easy. You can pursue plates when you are settled in. They tend to tie in your visa and your car together. Note there are people who claim to be providing plates that are stolen so beware !  Are you seeking a long term visa?

At the end of 6 months ,according to the ADUANA agent I will have to cross in to Guatemala or the U.S. to renew my visa and certify the car . There are things you can't get here so that's fine for me, its cheaper to get them in the U.S. than have them shipped..

Be prepared to pay a lot of tolls, there are 6-7 toll booths per day heading your way. Its safer to stay on the toll roads instead of the "libre" roads. The toll roads are much better maintained and the toll covers road service if you break down or have a flat. emergency phones are located about every kl.

Thanks travellite,  Yes, I am hoping to get a permanent visa for working as a Chiropractor.  I hope to start the process this next week, if they are open.  I didn't want to drive my car back to the border, if necessary.  That was what I was reading in previous posts. 

What types of items are must haves to bring with me?  I've heard electronics and clothing...I'm 5'7"...so a little taller female than most??

I also read vacuum cleaner?  I hope to make an exploratory excursion by air the first of March.  I have a house to sell and the contents within to purge...what should I hang onto?

cid5775 :

Thanks travellite,  Yes, I am hoping to get a permanent visa for working as a Chiropractor.  I hope to start the process this next week, if they are open.  I didn't want to drive my car back to the border, if necessary.  That was what I was reading in previous posts. 

What types of items are must haves to bring with me?  I've heard electronics and clothing...I'm 5'7"...so a little taller female than most??

I also read vacuum cleaner?  I hope to make an exploratory excursion by air the first of March.  I have a house to sell and the contents within to purge...what should I hang onto?

Residente Permanente visa holders are not allowed to have foriegn plated vehicles in Mexico. You will have to nationalize your vehicle to keep it and when you enter Mexico with your preapproved RP 6 month visa in your Passport you can get a 30 day temporay import sticker for your vehicle and will have to remove it or nationalize it, if it qualifies, as the rules for driving/owning a foriegn plated vehicle stipulates.

The car is linked to my visa so, unless I leave without the car its okay in Mexico. I have had no problems driving a foreign plate car with a  "permiso de importacion" temporal sticker on the window Its good for 6 months not 30 days.

As for what's necessary to bring, clothing is not such a big deal, I'm 5'9 and I have had no problems buying clothes here. There is a store called Liverpool which carries many name clothing items that are in some cases actually cheaper here. Some shoes might be an issue, although I bought some crock sandals here that are the best sandals I have ever had. The shoe issue is because the women here tend to want to be taller looking so they buy high heeled everything. Cell phones are very expensive and U.S. phones despite what they say don't work well. I bought a cell from Mexico sim card on line and it was reasonable and more importantly it works.

Bring your electronics and supplements . I use coconut oil and you would think it would be readily available, but it is not, nor is good quality dark chocolate. Good quality sharp tools like scissors and quality paper are lacking. Amazon will ship a few things but not many. The store I sometimes use here is Mercado libre sort of a amazon/e-bay cross. Forget all the furniture unless its business related.

As for permanent residency, it takes time and a lawyer to be safe, most start with a 6 month visa and ultimately get a 4 year if they like being here. Following the 4 year they work on the permanent status It's not easy or fast. The permanent process starts in the states at the Mexican consulate, and yes your car would have to be fully nationalized and that's expensive. If you decide to do that it might be better to just sell your car and buy one in Mexico. If you are dealing with a business visa it's probably more complex, I'm not familiar with work/ business visas.

The temporary six-month permit is not nationalizing a car.  It is simply a permit to take a US car into Mexico on a temporary basis.

Noieta Meva :

The temporary six-month permit is not nationalizing a car.  It is simply a permit to take a US car into Mexico on a temporary basis.

I'm not sure who you are talking to Noleta. That is a fairly old post and I was aware it was just importing, which I said. Nationalizing is tricky, it depends on the car and the person, and the rules have changed several times. I no longer have a foreign plated car so my car is nationalized automatically because it is a Mexican plated car, and I am a permanent resident.

ok My car is twenty years old with eighty thousand miles and in garage all it's life. It is worth about 500.00us. What is the bottom line for bringing it with me?

bothner06 :

ok My car is twenty years old with eighty thousand miles and in garage all it's life. It is worth about 500.00us. What is the bottom line for bringing it with me?

My bottom line would be sell it for whatever you can get there.

Mexico is very hard on cars. You say yours sat in the garage all of the time and is 20 years old, so I have no trouble at all imagining you in your broken down car at the side of the road. It's a scary thought, but very realistic and very possible. If you don't speak Spanish the thought becomes more scary. Even with  a sound reliable car it could be a problem.

You need a reliable car and experience driving in Mexico  to keep that reliable car sound. My original car was a very good sound car, but learning the roads cost me 2 tires every six months. One time we were at the side of the road after hitting a hidden pothole ( bache) . No town was near by so I flagged down a couple of guys on a motorcycle and they helped change the tire and direct us to somewhere with some tire service. My Spanish was good enough to get us there but it was alarming. Now imagine that in your car.

Can't agree more on what "travellight" said.

Personally, I traveled 10 years (2003-13) in Mexico with a foreign plated truck and RV in top shape, spoke Spanish did help once when a "tie down buckle broke off the slide-in camper" in the middle of nowhere.

We have flew since 2013 to Mexico and never used a vehicle. Since last August we are now fulltime residents and don't intend to even by a vehicle since the costs of travelling is so cheap with great services...even more if you are an elderly person (INAPAM card allows you to a 50% discount on intercity buses and large intracity like PV, Guadalajara, Tepic.

Also, now a service like Mibici en Guadalajara is the way to go (360$ pesos/year, allows unlimited 30 minutes use).

Adios y buen dia a todos, GyC.

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