Importing Chinese EV

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Canberra32
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Importing Chinese EV

Post by Canberra32 » Wed, 13 Jun 2012, 14:33

Hello there.
This is my first post and it's sure to be a crappy one.

I'm looking at importing a cheap Chinese electric car to gut for parts.
Has anyone brought one into the country yet? If so what were the problems faced doing so.
Customs are being quite useless on the information front so thought I would ask here.

As a new member I should probably introduce myself...

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Post by PlanB » Wed, 13 Jun 2012, 15:39

I brought an electric transaxle in from the US, AQIS are anal about wood packaging & will slug you big time for steam disinfection if it's not certified packaging. Funnily enough cars are no big deal, they usually insist on an underside washdown & that seems to be it. I used a guy who imports cars regularly from stateside so only had to pay for a tiny bit of space in one of his containers, it's the cheap & easy way to go (importers know how to jump through all the paperwork hoops) if you can find someone shipping in from China.

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Post by Canberra32 » Wed, 13 Jun 2012, 15:44

No it's a brand new in the box EV
It comes in a shipping container so no wood.
It was more the are customs trying to stop these cars on our roads. Hence if I cut it in half will they call it only parts?

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Post by Johny » Wed, 13 Jun 2012, 15:45

I agree - the wood packaging my motor (from Taiwan) came in was at least half the stress encountered. It all boiled down to paperwork (in my case) but the sellers appear to try to dump the whole lot on your doorstep.

Not sure why you don't just buy the parts from China rather than a whole car. Most of it will be useless - underpowered, underrated....

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Post by Johny » Wed, 13 Jun 2012, 15:46

Canberra32 wrote: No it's a brand new in the box EV
It comes in a shipping container so no wood.
It was more the are customs trying to stop these cars on our roads. Hence if I cut it in half will they call it only parts?
You could be bringing it in to use at the Golf club so I can't see that you need to slice it up.

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Post by Canberra32 » Wed, 13 Jun 2012, 16:18

Nope they regard it as roadworthy so needs a VIA number.
Feeling the need to publicly kick up a massive stink about aus gov not letting us clean up the airways.
They did the same thing with my big EV part till I asked in a troublemaking voice "are customs preventing the clean green Australia? What a story that would make" they quickly changed their tune to hang on we will see what we can do.

Is the government trying to control the green Australia? Is average joe like me not aloud to do my part?
Do they just want us to buy solar pannels to power their grid and line their pockets?
Is a green Australia the color of the hundred dollar notes in their pocket...

Yup stink kick up gaining weight... :)

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Post by PlanB » Wed, 13 Jun 2012, 16:28

Well gives us a look at it? In the meantime I'll check with a lawyer or two for an opinion? Can't see why you can't bring it in as long as you don't want to register it. Used to be a guy on ebay in SA with a container full of unregisterable EV scooters, didn't stop him bringing them in.

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Post by Canberra32 » Wed, 13 Jun 2012, 16:39

Spent ages on the phone over this.
The issue is they it's new.
To claim its parts it must be missing drivetrain.
The company will not pull them apart.
I would indeed retrofit the shell at a later date so yes I will ICV it at some point.

There in is the problem.
Company will pull them apart if I buy 10 lol

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Post by chopper_elec » Wed, 13 Jun 2012, 18:35

Its a ptiy that all attempts to bring in something new is often put through so many hoops that most of the enthusiasm is gone by the end of the process.

Hope it all works out mate.

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Post by Adverse Effects » Wed, 13 Jun 2012, 19:49

Canberra32 wrote:I would indeed retrofit the shell at a later date so yes I will ICV it at some point.


so in fact you are trying to bring in a car brand new that is not made for AU and your trying to get it through by calling it spare parts

when in the long run you will try to put the car on the road

people doing things like this made it hard for others that follow the rules

[edit]spelling
Last edited by Adverse Effects on Wed, 13 Jun 2012, 09:50, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Canberra32 » Thu, 14 Jun 2012, 00:51

Not so.
I am indeed bringing the car in as parts.
I have no intensional of using the original running gear of the car as is as it is useless.
I'm only after the shell.
By spending god knows how much to develop a kit so they comply to au standards and going down the right track to engineer them legally I hardly see this is a issue for others.
My problem is that the company selling them will not sell just the shell unless I buy 10 or more.
That's a big expense for something that may not pass.
The laws are in place so only car dealer with import licenses can bring in new cars so that industry can be regulated.
If the certifier says it will pass straight up I will just fork out the money and become the dealer.
Will still change the motor and batteries because of unrealisticly low top speed but the shell they use has about ten different configurations so they are built to handle the power and speed. 
It is the only other small car similar to the smart car wherein it uses a safety cell that all the parts of the different models bolt to. Plus it comes solar already.
all in all my goal is one of two things.
A small EV new for under $20,000 or a new car donor kit for 6000-7000
If things like this are available it is well within most peoples means.
Its not about money as there nothing to be made at that price  it's the more EVs show up on our roads people will be less afraid of buying them.
Three questions we always hear
How much?
How fast?
How far?
Converting an old bomb while fun to do dose not turn heads, remember onlookers did not get the fun of the build they just see the bomb.
Average joe views a conversion as too big and daunting a task. 
We can educate the public as much as we want but without the product right in front of their faces they will march to the beat of the car companies.
It's fine for me to say we need clean air and save petroleum for plastics but if I didn't do all I can to make it happen then I can't really talk.
I already build clubmans but at 45k min on road they are out of the reach of many.
Even just a roadworthy roller is 15k
my own personal electric just in parts has already hit the 40k before I even began welding the frame. Add labour of  build and a build from scratch EV can get really out of hand.
Most of the people I know are quite deep in the higher end of the show car market and the racing scene and until I told them it's the same power as a LS1 V8 they just viewed it as a golf buggy.
If you tell most people the range is 100ks they glaze over and start thinking if they need to get milk on the way home.

The head turner car I will have but a cheaper option for people is needed.

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Post by antiscab » Thu, 14 Jun 2012, 01:21

Canberra32 wrote: The laws are in place so only car dealer with import licenses can bring in new cars so that industry can be regulated.
If the certifier says it will pass straight up I will just fork out the money and become the dealer.
Will still change the motor and batteries because of unrealisticly low top speed but the shell they use has about ten different configurations so they are built to handle the power and speed. 
It is the only other small car similar to the smart car wherein it uses a safety cell that all the parts of the different models bolt to. Plus it comes solar already.
all in all my goal is one of two things.
A small EV new for under $20,000 or a new car donor kit for 6000-7000
You don't have to be a car dealer to get an import licence, and *very* few car dealers bother to get one - they're the retail end of the business

vertically integrated businesses like John Hughes bother to get an import permits on new cars (think Geely), but most of the time the manufacturer does the importation and wholesale side of things

For motorbikes, compliance testing is easy, just costs $15k to do it from scratch

for cars, you will need to buy a few spares for crash testing as well as the compliance confirmation.
If design changes are necessary, then that and re-testing is needed.

As far as donor kits go, Goombi used to sell a donor kit for $6-$7k
that was your usual chinese hardware, for a small car with 80kmh top speed

bringing in conversion kits to convert cars that have already been complianced is the way to go....

Matt

Matt
2017 Renault zoe - 25'000km
2007 vectrix - 156'000km
1998 prius - needs Batt
1999 Prius - needs batt
2000 prius - has 200 x headway 38120 cells

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Post by Canberra32 » Thu, 14 Jun 2012, 01:29

Correct but if the engineer says don't bother I'm not going to buy the other three to crash.
I don't mind spending money but I do hate wasting it.

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Post by Adverse Effects » Thu, 14 Jun 2012, 15:39

the VIN is on the shell of the car not the drive train

so you are trying to import a car for road use with out having to pay what every other person has to pay

you are tring to get around the law

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Post by Canberra32 » Thu, 14 Jun 2012, 22:59

No because I'm only using the body shell.
The frame or chassis that it sits on I have to make a new.
It's a simple tube space frame chassis.
That's what will need the ICV. That's what will get the vin.
It's no different to a Hotrod body.
The only thing I like about the car is the shell and it's interior.
I did the same thing with the ute cab on my ute.
It's simple for the amount of time it takes to fabricate and swing doors and make a cab it's not worth the effort to build one.
All is solved anyway the company has agreed at sell me furnished shells in lots of 4 so that not so bad.

And for reference if you modify a car built here with a VIN on the body if you change it more than a certain percent it will need to be ICV.
This happens a lot in the highly modified world.

Funny you seem to be trying to make an issue when I have not only asked customs but But the engineer as well.
Also posted on here about it.
Seems like someone would have to be an epic idiot to do so much to incriminate himself don't you think?
Seems I spent a very long time on the phone to both customs and import authority to then do the wrong thing.
Feel free to keep sledging though :)

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Post by Canberra32 » Fri, 15 Jun 2012, 00:06

Update

Company happy to play ball :)
Will send cars in any state I ask for :) that good because for a moment there I thought they diddnt want to sell products lol.
They have no products in this market yet so part of it is better than none lol.

Also now the company is happy to send in a disassembled state it means less pulling apart I have to do :)
Plus I don't have crap batteries, motors and wheels to chuck or eBay:)
No crappy shipping charge on dangerous goods for the batteries :)
Funny thing is the sample price for one car is only 500 bucks less than 4 shells :)
container size dose double but that's no big deal :)
All the suspension parts I'm using are already ok by engineer:)
And chassis easy to cad up and have laser cut so all in all big steps in the right direction:)

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Post by Rando-M » Fri, 15 Jun 2012, 02:04

Image Good one Canbra, and sorry you felt sledged.
I'd be intrested in one of these I reckon, so please keep us posted.
Also, if an electric clubman only had to do a small commute (15 km each way), how much could it be put together for, roughly?

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Post by Canberra32 » Fri, 15 Jun 2012, 02:28

Ohh rando here let me give you an idea.
It depends on power and speed.
A clubman chassis and body will weigh in at around 100kg if your going small hatchback size maybe 80kg
Depending on the power your running will be the weight of between 100-300kg extra
Then you have to work out what your doing in the way of electric motor and batt.
the car you use for parts and wheels is the first cost. So up to you
The frame 2k
Skinned frame with nose cone and suspension mounting brackets 5k
From that point on what you put in is up to you.
Any mods to frame I just charge out an hourly rate.
Last but not least the engineer and I'm sure that price is subject to their mood lol

I can tell you now that even me not charging my own labour on my own car even the cheapest ICV clubman would struggle to hit the road for under 15k
Least one you would feel safe driving anyway :)
Rule of thumb is bare car price and add 10k for on road.
For cheaper cars even bulk buying parts it's still hard to get the price down.
If your handy with a welder I'm happy to offer advice on frame building :)
Just PM me

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Post by Canberra32 » Fri, 15 Jun 2012, 02:29

Also I gotta say the ev world not my market for clubmans.
There not a whole lot of room for batteries in one

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Post by Jeff Owen » Fri, 15 Jun 2012, 02:52

Canberra32 wrote: There not a whole lot of room for batteries in one


Batteries in side-pods and motor and gearbox in the usual place.

Or, use front wheel drive gearbox in the back of the car and put the batteries in the front and along the transmission tunnel.

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Post by Canberra32 » Fri, 15 Jun 2012, 03:03

Yeah transmission in the back is a good idea but you have to be careful with the weight balance when using big battery packs all up front.
There are no side pods on a clubman and the tunnel is quite narrow.
If I was building a frame for an EV like that I would make a wider tunnel to keep weight down the centerline.
The further away from the centerline the weight the harder it will roll on corners.
The current frames are made for conventional drivetrain but that's easy to change.
If it was a EV only frame I would build the tunnel around the pack then add the rest of the frame to suit.

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Post by BigMouse » Fri, 15 Jun 2012, 03:35

Canberra32 wrote: Update

Company happy to play ball :)
Will send cars in any state I ask for :) that good because for a moment there I thought they diddnt want to sell products lol.
They have no products in this market yet so part of it is better than none lol.


Congrats! Have you posted somewhere else what car you're actually talking about? Curious to see details/photos. I assume these are "neighborhood" EVs by default? Low speed for driving around a golf club?

I'm curious how the ICV process works for an EV. I'm part of a solar race car team at my Uni and, if our car comes together with the method of construction we're thinking of using, I'd be very tempted to design and build my own purpose-built EV.

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Post by Canberra32 » Fri, 15 Jun 2012, 03:47

Well for ICV my advice is gather as much info as you can draw as best you can what you want then find an engineer and lay down some cash for his thoughts on it.
If you know the way to go then is cheaper. If you build then try the engineer it could get crazy by the time it complies.
Clubmans have been around for years so my frame is easy to engineer.
What style are you thinking?

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Post by BigMouse » Fri, 15 Jun 2012, 04:43

Canberra32 wrote:What style are you thinking?
Something between this: http://www.green-car-guide.com/delta-mo ... coupe.html
And this: http://vw-ok.ch.vu/blog-entry-72.html

With normal doors instead of the goofy lambo-style ones.

Carbon fibre monocoque. The solar car will be an indicator of how possible it is to do this as one person. Just dreaming for the moment.

So what Chinese car are you bringing in?

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Post by Canberra32 » Fri, 15 Jun 2012, 12:14

Yeah a carbon monocoque that you swing doors off is a big job.
I'm good at that sort of thing and I'm trying to buy shells so I don't have to do it.
Unless your a wiz with CAD and have access to a big 5axis machine it's a huge task it's the is it worth it kind of huge.
My advice would be find a car with a similar look then take a cast of its cab. Then use a spaceframe chassis underneath it and swing the doors off the original car. Windscreen and so on.
Remember solar car is very different beast to a roadworthy everyday driver.

And kids I'm not going to show the car u till its on the boat and heading over:) chickens before the hatch :)

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