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Old 9 May 2008
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Angry BMW Letter of Compliance - HELP

Hi Guys,

I've recently relocated from South Africa to Brussels, Belgium and brought my bike with me. To register the bike here in Brussels I need a letter stating that the bike conforms to EU regulations (although it was manufactured in Germany). As I dont have this i need to go through the ministry to obtain an 'isolated title' that will cost me €700. In South Africa I simply spoke to my BMW dealer and he provided me with a Letter of Compliance for free. I originally bought the bike in Ghana and needed this letter for South Africa as well. Anybody have any experience with this? The costs to get the bike here and register it is starting to stack up
Any help or advice will be appreciated,


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Old 9 May 2008
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I had a similar problem when I wanted to take a Ducati back to the UK from Saudi. I was told to contact Ducati with the frame and engine numbers and they would give EU confirmation. I didn't bother as the cam belt broke and stuffed the engine.
I don't see why BMW can't do the same.
Worth a try.
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Old 9 May 2008
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What you need is a PVG number, and depending where the bike comes from and what year it is, this can be easy, or a real pain. Do you know where it came from before you bought in Ghana? If that happens to be the EU, things might not be that bad. If it is outside the EU, and the bike is younger then 2004 or so, you hang.... . Anyway, I would still check with a BMW dealer whether they can't give you a certificate of confirmity and a PVG number. If you have a PVG number, you're all set.
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Old 9 May 2008
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When I brought a Harley from Dubai to the UK, the dealer wasn't very forthcoming about getting a conformity certificate as they didn't really know what to do and neither did I.

I skipped it and took the bike for an SVA test, which I thought was a EU-inspired thing but I may be wrong. They tested the bike to make sure it conformed to UK spec, then sent me on my way to the DVLA to get it registered. The whole thing didn't cost anywhere near 700 Euro. I don't see why the Belgian authorities would want so much.

Try BMW first, who should be able to provide you with a piece of paper for next to nothing.

However, just because the bike was built in Germany doesn't necessarily mean that it conforms to EU law (although I'm guessing it probably does). Manufacturers build bikes and cars for local markets and make changes to all sorts of things; plastics, uprated shocks and brakes, heat resistant components, emissions controls, etc. Your bike could be better, the same, or worse than Euro spec.

It's like Nescafe coffee. Same name on the jar, tastes different in every country.

And, regarding the costs and the hassle, frankly, I should have just sold the bike in Dubai and bought another one here.

Good luck.

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Old 9 May 2008
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I only have experience of BMW's cars but they made a big deal in their advertising that each dealer had a computer with a direct link to BMW in Germany. Just from your VIN no., they can supposedly access what is effectively a build sheet for your vehicle down to every nut and bolt. Don't know exactly how true this is or whether it's just marketing crap, but in my experience, the dealers were always helpful (apart from their pricing) and could always access the info I needed, even for a 20-year-old, 3-series.

Surely your local BMW dealer can help out with this.
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Old 13 May 2008
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Thanks for the advice guys. I think the thing about the BMW computer system might be true. When I requested the letter of compliance in South Africa, they were able to tell me the whole service history of the bike, dates km's on the clock etc. First registration was in Italy, so now I'll have to see if I can find a friendly BMW dealer in Brussels who will be willing to make a bit of effort. I would rater spend the €700 at the dealer than getting the bike registered.

Lets see what happens.
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Old 13 May 2008
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Had the same issue importing German reg'd bikes into France. The local importers there provide the certificate and charge about 150 Euro (Honda a few years ago). I wish I could print money like that.

If the bike is originally from Italy you should have no problems registering it anywhere in the EU. Depending on its age the original Italian papers may suffice, if you can lay your hands on them.

Europe to NZ 2006-10
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