1. Overview

Your vehicle must meet both of the following regulations if you want to use it on the road:

You must prove that your vehicle meets environmental and safety regulations or has an exemption from the regulations if you’re permanently importing it into the UK. To do this you’ll need the right paperwork, which could be:

You must also:

Until you’ve done this, you can’t keep or use the vehicle on public roads, except to drive it to pre-arranged appointments that are necessary to register it.

You can get a vehicle import pack from the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA).

There are different rules if you’re temporarily importing a vehicle into the UK.

DVLA advises you to transport your vehicle from the port, rather than driving it.

Driving with a foreign registration number

UK residents aren’t allowed to use non-UK registered vehicles on UK roads. The only exceptions are if you:

  • work in another EU member state and use an EU-registered company car temporarily in the UK
  • lease an EU-registered car and use this temporarily in the UK

Vehicles over 10 years old

If you’re importing a vehicle into Great Britain that’s over 10 years old, contact DVLA, or the Driver and Vehicle Agency in Northern Ireland.

If the vehicle’s a goods vehicle over 3.5 tonnes, you can apply for Mutual Recognition.

The 10 year date is based on the date of manufacture or first registration.

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