Classic cars in Vietnam

Johnson1e :

Hello, I'm Ed from Denver, Colorado and am presently visiting HCMC and Hanoi and DaLat.  Did you ever find out what the limits are on owning a classic car in Vietnam? My resources indicate that a foreigner bring their own car over needs to be 5 years or newer. So, how do the others get away with it?  Thanks-Ed

Regular expats never import cars. I suppose there are a few wealthy fanatics who don't mind tossing off $100k for status. Also, very few regular expats even own a car because of the risks of killing somebody in the traffic anarchy. There is a reason the cars drive 15 mph.

Moving to a developing country is not like moving to Texas. It is much better to be of a mindset that you are starting your life over, more simply. A new adventure. Going somewhere fresh, so you can leave all the baggage and junk behind.  :idontagree:

Well, I guess that giving up one's long time vocation and interest will always be an option.  However, I feel that with the upcoming F1 race event in Hanoi next April (2020) augmented with Vinfast's aggressive plans to take their automobiles to the USA within two years will accelerate general interest with both new and old vehicles in Vietnam.  ...just my opinion.  Thanks for your response and expressing your opinion.   -Ed

Doesn't mean you can't enjoy your interest in Vietnam, I was just talking about importing. Maybe you can pick up something unusual here and rebuild it. Labor is cheap. There are a number of foreigners running motorcycle tuner shops. There is a street An Dương Vương in Saigon District 1 or 5 with dealer garages full of Bentleys, Mercedes, BMWs, trucks etc. Mostly newer vehicles. Yesterday I saw a old military jeep full of kids, and a backfiring Ferrari pass my apt. Driving is dangerous though. And you can check import policies of other countries, maybe some better options!

Johnson1e :

Well, I guess that giving up one's long time vocation and interest will always be an option.  However, I feel that with the upcoming F1 race event in Hanoi next April (2020) augmented with Vinfast's aggressive plans to take their automobiles to the USA within two years will accelerate general interest with both new and old vehicles in Vietnam.  ...just my opinion.  Thanks for your response and expressing your opinion.   -Ed

You can look on xe.chotot and find some things.  Just sort by year to eliminate new stuff.  I found a really nice restored 1968 Honda 600, new leather interior, repaint, that ran well a few months ago.  It's a cute little car and the price was about $3,200 USD.  I've seen old Datsun 510s as well.  Old US will cost a ton so if you are open to old Japanese cars there are options.

lots of old French cars from the colonial era kicking about Saigon & Ha Noi, seen umpteen Willy's Jeeps & like hundreds of old Vespa's, Lambretta's, French mo peds & even seen old pre  60's Triumph, BMW motorbikes if you are into bikes.

Thanks for your note. We are presently visiting DaLat at this moment and will be here for three days.  We're checking out the areas for something that might work for us.  We are hoping to hire a driver possibly through a relator to show us around the outskirts of DaLat.  We have no intention to relocate to Ho Chi Minh City or Hanoi within the city limits.  Although I have seen several Maybachs and Bentleys driving around, city traffic would be impossible to enjoy with the vehicles that I am referring to.  We presently reside in the suburbs of Denver, CO.  We are looking for something similar and the bus ride from the Airport to DaLat could offer some hope.   ...more to come.   Ed

Ed, I live in HCMC (about 14 years now) & head for Da Lat at the first opportunity usually about 4 times a year, I love it there but not the city. Do it one time & you have done it enough. I like the outskirts too & always stay around Tuyen Lam Lake. Just hope you got the cash to set up in Da Lat, most new properties there are in the 20 plus billion VND range. Good luck anyway & if you see anything in the 4 billion range outside the city & dont buy it, can you send me details.
Renting is easier on the pocket but not much available outside the city I think.

Good Luck

Unionjack, thanks for your note.  A relator will be spending time with us this pm, but I would focus on the outskirts of town, possibly closer to the airport. Seems that we saw many fires going on in the hills yesterday from the ride to DaLat from the airport. Probably normal?   Anyway, overall, I would go for a long term lease rather than buy.  I am impressed with the country's GDP growth rate at 19%.  I am also concerned about recent aggression from China trying to influence their surrounding areas.  My wife's family already went through property seizure from the north around 1982.  I'm sure that even leasing/renting, I would still maintain a very comfortable lifestyle here.  Will still hold title to some open land in Colorado if things go south. I'll keep you in the loop if the relator points out some bargains now as my timing is in the 3-4 year range.   Ed.

Unionjack, we did have a chance to ride with the realtor to check out properties. I will mention that these were properties that he (his agency) was pushing.  If I was a realtor I would be doing the same.  To me, it seems that the Beverly Hills (housing syndrone) has already taken place here.  Some of the DaLat properties and open land values were just out of the box outrageous compared to current Denver, CO standards.  But of course, the climate in DaLat is probably the best that the country has to offer.  We did see an affordable, new, just under 3,000 sq ft home in a new development on the outskirts going for $435K (with several others in construction, but it had no yard to speak of with no garage, not even a driveway.  This doesn't fit my vision.  There are also plenty of folks selling property outright without realtors, but I would need to spend a lot more time finding and negotiating with these folks. The time & material to build a new house seems to be a lot less than the Denver standards as well.  So, I'm still on the fence.
If you need the agent's name:  Le Van Thai /0918 438 439   www.thitruongdalat.vn  The $435K (US) house was his friend of the family-next door.    -Ed

Johnson1e,
Thanks for your update Ed, pretty much as I had suspected & researched to be honest. Mind boggling really where all the cash comes from to pay these prices!

Johnson1e :

Unionjack, we did have a chance to ride with the realtor to check out properties. I will mention that these were properties that he (his agency) was pushing.  If I was a realtor I would be doing the same.  To me, it seems that the Beverly Hills (housing syndrone) has already taken place here.  Some of the DaLat properties and open land values were just out of the box outrageous compared to current Denver, CO standards.  But of course, the climate in DaLat is probably the best that the country has to offer.  We did see an affordable, new, just under 3,000 sq ft home in a new development on the outskirts going for $435K (with several others in construction, but it had no yard to speak of with no garage, not even a driveway.  This doesn't fit my vision.  There are also plenty of folks selling property outright without realtors, but I would need to spend a lot more time finding and negotiating with these folks. The time & material to build a new house seems to be a lot less than the Denver standards as well.  So, I'm still on the fence.
If you need the agent's name:  Le Van Thai /0918 438 439   www.thitruongdalat.vn  The $435K (US) house was his friend of the family-next door.    -Ed

House construction is cheap, its the land price that is the killer.

hi, perfect subject, I'm looking for a job in a garage specializing in classic cars on hcmc, to open one for myself later. do you have advice, sites, addresses.
I would also like to repatriate my golf 1 GTI of 79 I want a lot. how much will it cost me?

thank you

Hate to say this, but I really do not see any emphasis on changing existing laws as at present, foreigners coming to Vietnam still must have their vehicles five years or newer.  However, the relator that showed us around DaLat when asked, mentioned that the receiving customs agent can accept varying unaccountable fees to allow this to actually happen.  When doing business in many undeveloped countries, this is the norm and must be budgeted for. (see this web link):
https://www.angloinfo.com/how-to/vietna … -a-vehicle 

Since our recent visit, we have decided to lay low on the relocation.  Best of luck!  I used to own a Hot Rod  1985 Golf in my earlier years.

golf hot rod !! cool I would have liked to see it said so.
yes so for the import of a classic car it is almost impossible unless you bribe everyone in passing

Classic cars ( classic being 25yrs or older) in Vietnam is pretty much a pointless exercise. The rules re importation, the total lack of any accessibility to both parts and expertise etc as well as actually owning one and trying to drive it here make Vietnam the last place that would make such a dealership viable. Go to Cuba . .. it is full of them.

Been to Cuba.  Would not like to relocate there either. US relations with Cuba has recently gone downhill.  Will stay in Colorado until something solid opens up.  Thanks-Ed

New topic