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  #1  
Old 26 Nov 2009
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Taking a bike to China

Hi all, I am new here, and I know there has been a lot of talk about China, wether it is possible to take a bike or not, and so on.

I lived in China before and I have my chinese driving license, so, on this part, there is no problem.

I will be moving again to China, and this time I want to take a bike with me. The bike will probably be a R80GS or R100GS Dakar, nothing to fancy so I can do repairs myself.

I have read that rules are changing, but, is it possible to take the bike? What will be the cost at customs? I will be based in Shanghai (or near enough). From what I know there are BMW dealers so, big bikes, must be allowed now.

Any insight will be much appreciated.
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  #2  
Old 26 Nov 2009
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bike in china

hi there,
as far i know it is possible to get in china with own bike. it is very easy: you've just to pay a LOT for it... they ask me 1200 Eu. to ride from torugart to khunjerab pass in 4 days. guide, car guide, driving licence, bike paperworks, insurance, hotels and so on. i've posted in another thread the seeking for people to try to share costs and riding.
my plan is to reach china border on about august 18 2010.

are you on the same way?

www.lungastrada.it
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  #3  
Old 27 Nov 2009
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Yes, big bikes are allowed now, but it's not that simple.

Basically in China in some areas you can technically and other areas in reality register big bikes such as BMWs and Harleys. This is only for machines that have been legally imported by these companies for sale, and there is a huge amount of import tax and other registration duties on these bikes, which makes, for example a BMW 100% more expensive 'on the road' than it would be in the EU. Also if you are going to live in Shanghai the bike would need local plates, and probably local plates will be unobtainable in Shanghai, as most residents are limited to 125cc, and you'd need legal import paperwork to register the bike. Shanghai also has one bike or car per household, or other such local bylaws. However the further you will be living from central Shanghai the easier it will be to register.

Also, I doubt it is currently possible to bring in, for any length of time, a motorcycle legally, except short term with some tour group operator. The other alternative would be to stick the bike on the back of a truck and hope for the best, but riding an illegally imported bike in Shanghai is a bad idea these days, but possible to do without too much hassle in rural provincial areas, but you take your own gamble with that.

Laws in China do change, and the government do not publisize rule changes so certainly try to get a 2nd opinion.

If I was in your shoes I would try to buy a 2nd hand registered BMW or buy a new Jialing 600 with Zhejiang plates in China.

Also these days there are loads of 250cc single cylinder and parallel twins which are lightweight, fun, easy to register and cheap to buy.
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Last edited by ZMC888; 2 Dec 2009 at 04:53.
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  #4  
Old 27 Nov 2009
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dnicoletti, my idea is not to travel to China by bike but fly there and take the bike with me. As I will be moving most of my household goods, the idea is to use the same transport to take the bike over. Once in China I will use it to ride around and maybe take some short trips from home, hopefully with some guys in the same situation.

In any case, dates have not been decided yet.
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  #5  
Old 27 Nov 2009
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ZMC888, thanks for your input. I will keep on seeking additional information, I may move before taking a decision and, from Shanghai, evaluate other possibilities. As I will probably start to work there early next year, but will not go into moving until august or so, so I will have a few months to try to find out what will be the best move.

Buying a bike locally is always an option. Actually I was also thinking along those lines. Is this as easy as it looks? If I go along those lines, I will not go for an expensive bike, instead I will look into something chinese that will work.

By the way, is off road riding allowed? Not that it matters since, from what I remember, most roads can really be considered off road by our standards
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  #6  
Old 28 Nov 2009
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pepelu,

The Galaxy 250 is a Chinese made bike which is quickly gaining popularity. Cheap and fun, available in motard and dirt format or you can even buy two sets of wheels for different uses. Costs 11,000 to 13,000 RMB and road legal. Fun and all you need in China, due to it having a good power to weight ratio for going through potholes and avoid mad cyclists and village stray chickens.

Check this thread:
ChinaV's new Galaxy 250! - MyChinaMoto - Chinese Motorcycle Forum

There are better bikes available or with bigger displacement but they are all much more expensive or not road legal.

If you decide you need to live in or near central Shanghai you'll probably need to buy and register the bike in Zhejiang in the name of a trustworthy Chinese (girl) friend.
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  #7  
Old 28 Nov 2009
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It sure looks nice, and for that price, it is worth it. Thanks, again, for all this info.
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  #8  
Old 28 Nov 2009
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G'Day,

Who wants to ride a crappy small displacement China bike with no power?
Spent some $$$$ on a real bike!

哈雷戴维森 上海网站
bmw-motorcycle.com.cn
Öйú±¦ÂíĦÍгµ¾ãÀÖ²¿¹Ù·½Í øÕ¾||BMW Motorrad Club China official website
¶Å¿¨µÏ(Öйú)

Ride Safe! Season's Greetings! BUTCHMAN
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Somewhere down the road in China…. life is one lap with no restarts and the finish line is unknown ~ keep going!!! TBR-China
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  #9  
Old 28 Nov 2009
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I already have a real bike, but seems too difficult to take it to china, althoug I will try. When, and if, I settle down in China, I will evaluate the options.

This real bike (R1150RS) will be complemented soon with a R80G/S or R100GS (also real, but older), and is this that I want to take to China.

I also want to buy some off road, relatively cheap, chinese bike to take back to Spain.ç

I hardly think that buying a new BMW, or Ducatti, in China is really an option, but I may be wrong.

By the way, butchman, I've sent you a PM, I hope you don't mind.
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  #10  
Old 28 Nov 2009
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Who wants an overweight slug bike? Powerful engine, but costs as much as a house and useless on Chinese roads, because it's too heavy!

Save money, have fun, buy a smaller bike!
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Last edited by ZMC888; 29 Nov 2009 at 04:34.
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  #11  
Old 29 Nov 2009
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nice little dirt monster

take you beemers to china as just checked bmws china web site and the gsa has only 100hp compared to europes 110hp.. but the china bike is good for those who have just passed their tests and a good winter bike
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  #12  
Old 29 Nov 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pepelu View Post
I already have a real bike, but seems too difficult to take it to china, althoug I will try. When, and if, I settle down in China, I will evaluate the options.
G'Day,

You will be facing huge challenges with importation of a used motorbike, real + legit rego will be impossible as well in Shanghai. The Shanghai police constantly confiscates motorbike with out of town rego (forget Zhejiang / Jiangsu province bike registration, it's not worth the hassle).

Quote:
Originally Posted by pepelu View Post
I hardly think that buying a new BMW, or Ducatti, in China is really an option, but I may be wrong.
The only real options for legal imported brandnew bikes are BMW, Ducati, HD in the moment but apparently Yamaha and KTM getting approved to sell their bikes in ML China.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pepelu View Post
By the way, butchman, I've sent you a PM, I hope you don't mind.
Just replied to your message.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ZMC888 View Post
Who wants an overweight slug bike? Powerful engine, but costs as much as a house and useless on Chinese roads, because it's too heavy!
Teachers salaries will not buy a premium import bike in ML China thats for sure but hey, you only live once and riding a BMW GS1200ADV comfortable with real / legit Shanghai rego is far more enjoyable compared to a crappy China bike anytime.
For go-kart track racing, nothing beats a Honda Z50JZ "Monkey" with a 150-175cc DOHC engine and super sticky 10" semi-slick tyres....
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  #13  
Old 29 Nov 2009
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I could afford to buy a 'premium bike' but I can't justify the money on it. As it's twice as much as it would be in the EU. Plus all the fun I have on my crappy China bike, which makes a top heavy Ewan and Charlie wannabe lard-ass machine a waste of my family's money.

Quote:
Seeya in the pub or on the road somewhere
.....I'd rather avoid you actually.....in case my salary, status, motorcycle, legal paperwork or insurance details don't measure up to your standards.
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Last edited by ZMC888; 29 Nov 2009 at 08:20.
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  #14  
Old 29 Nov 2009
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Peplu, under Chinese law motorcycles from other provinces are legal when they go elsewhere. I think Butchman is confused, bikes that appear to be registered legally are confiscated by police all over China. This is because the riders often:

1. have fake plates
2. Not renewed their insurance
3. Have not had their bike government tested
4. Don't have a driving license

However if there are local anti-motorcycle by-laws they may ban all or not centrally registered bikes from central areas. For example you can only ride in central Beijing with police or Beijing 'A' plates.

So if you have a new bike with zhejiang plates you'll probably be OK everywhere outside of central Shanghai.
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  #15  
Old 30 Nov 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pepelu View Post
Hi all, I am new here, and I know there has been a lot of talk about China, wether it is possible to take a bike or not, and so on.

I lived in China before and I have my chinese driving license, so, on this part, there is no problem.

I will be moving again to China, and this time I want to take a bike with me. The bike will probably be a R80GS or R100GS Dakar, nothing to fancy so I can do repairs myself.

I have read that rules are changing, but, is it possible to take the bike? What will be the cost at customs? I will be based in Shanghai (or near enough). From what I know there are BMW dealers so, big bikes, must be allowed now.

Any insight will be much appreciated.
Forget about bringing a bike to China the legal way If you are lucky you can bring a new bike if you get it CCC'd and it complies with the emission standards. You still have to pay all duties, a homologation fee and go miles of red tape. You end up paying the same as if you'd bought it from a dealer here.

Exceptions:
- diplomats (the emission standard thing still applies)
- if you have really, really, really good connections - I am not aware of anyone who has those for this very purpose

And yes, I know you are not a tourist, you come to work and / or live there. Sorted out your working / residence permit? Also note that the driving license is not valid forever and it may be difficult, highly troublesome or impossible to get it extended if you try to in a place different from the original place of issuing. Once expired for >12 months you have to go through the procedure from scratch.


A good read on rules: Beijing Traffic Management Bureau
Also worth a read: MyChinaMoto - Chinese Motorcycle Forum - Powered by vBulletin

If you buy a bike in China and if you want to be legal (not everybody desires that ), your choice may be among the following:

- 6 to 12k RMB will buy you a 250cc local made bike. The experts for these are on mychinamoto (see link above). A German guy rode a 125cc bike from Shanghai to Berlin, two up!!

- I have not much info on the 400~450cc machines, but some guys on mychinamoto have for sure.

- Less than 40k should make you the owner of a Jialing JH600. Franki (here, on mychinamoto and advrider) is the most experienced JH600 rider I am aware of. I know a bunch of other locals and foreigners on JH600s and I tried it myself - not too exciting but good value for money is the common opinion. There is a good writeup on mychinamoto about this bike.

- there are some legal second hand bikes around for 40 to 200k, mostly Beemers. Currently for sale: F650CS ~75k

- the big bikes are >200k. BMW, HD are in the market for a couple of years already, so is Yamaha (they have only the R1 type approved from what I hear). There is a Honda dealer in Beijing I heard but I am not sure if and what they sell there. Ducati are starting, no idea what they will have on the shelf. I don't think other manufacturers are coming to the Chinese market any time soon.

- no idea on prices of custom bikes ±±¾©ººÂí¹þÀ×||Chrome Horse Motorcycles Beijing China

- there is still a huge 3-wheeler community all over the country if you want to go for one of these - mine is for sale btw


When are you coming and where are you moving to?

All the above to the best of my knowledge and based on very recent first hand info

Moreover the "different village different rules" as well as the "it worked yesterday, it doesn't work today, but it may work again tomorrow" principles apply

Cheers

Last edited by chinabiker; 30 Nov 2009 at 22:54. Reason: typo
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