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Thread: Canadian Import Restriction - USA into Canada of Model S

  1. #1
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    Icon6 Canadian Import Restriction - USA into Canada of Model S

    Apologies if this has been asked before(I'm brand new here...) OR if I'm under the wrong section >> did a search which showed up nothing.

    Does anyone know what the differences are in a US Spec Model S vs. a CAD Spec unit which prohibits a US unit from being imported into Canada as a used vehicle under RIV. I'm quite familiar with the car - have driven each with no discernable/noticable differences in displays, ride height, etc. I'm told there are a few software differences and one hardware difference.

    Many thanks!

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    I don't know, although I'd like to know what the hardware difference is.

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    Roadster 2.0 VIN939 djp's Avatar
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    It's not the spec difference that is the problem, the car needs to be added to the Vehicle Import Compatibility list by Transport Canada. They'll only add it if Tesla petitions them to do so, and so far Tesla hasn't been interested in opening the border. Tesla added the Roadster last year, after it was out of production.

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    As far as I can tell from the manual, the differences are tire/loading and certification labels and that the daytime running lights can not be turned off in certain jurisdictions in Canada as required by law. For DRL, that would be a simple software change or it may even be location aware, so that's certainly not the reason. There must be another reason and it's quite possibly that hardware difference.
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    big differences between Canadian spec vehicles and American spec vehicles (in general, not Tesla specific)
    - bumper requirements
    - Child seat anchors
    - Daytime running lights
    - immobilizer requirements (length of time to arm once vehicle is shut off)

    That said, djp is correct. This is entirely Tesla blocking the import of the vehicles. The government asks the manufacturers which vehicles should be eligible, and Tesla has told them that the S isn't. As long as Tesla refuses to allow the import, there's not much that can be done.

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    You have to remember that Tesla is still a tiny car company, and in Canada, really tiny. Importation would just increase their service costs (Canadian SC would have to stock US unique parts and be trained on US cars) for no particular benefit.

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    The point is that from a service stand point there is no difference between a us and a canada car, there's no different parts to stock, and no different training needed.

    The fact that they only allowed imports of the roadster after discontinuing it speaks volumes to their reasoning. They're trying to protect their sales, same as every other car manufacturer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by green1 View Post
    big differences between Canadian spec vehicles and American spec vehicles (in general, not Tesla specific)
    - bumper requirements
    - Child seat anchors
    - Daytime running lights
    - immobilizer requirements (length of time to arm once vehicle is shut off)

    That said, djp is correct. This is entirely Tesla blocking the import of the vehicles. The government asks the manufacturers which vehicles should be eligible, and Tesla has told them that the S isn't. As long as Tesla refuses to allow the import, there's not much that can be done.
    - bumper height the same
    - child anchors easy retrofit aftermarket, if already not universal
    - daytime running - software
    - immobilizer, software

    in addition you have to support metric...

    When I moved from USA to Canada, I brought my BMW 740 up, and you had to put stickers on the dash for Km/h! (no software switch then), but seriously it is very common for people to relocate between the countries, so I had expected to be able to just move between, but I was also told that you cannot bring any US car to Canada by Tesla.
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    Member green1's Avatar
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    Bumper height isn't the issue, it's the speed rating. Many american vehicles have different bumpers in Canada. That said, worst case you have to shell out for new bumpers.
    Child anchors are an easy retrofit, and you should be allowed to.
    And you're right that the rest is software, so Tesla should just be able to push you the Canadian firmware version.

    Unfortunately our import rules, although claiming to be about safety, are not, they are purely protectionist measures allowing automakers to charge a lot more in Canada for the same vehicles they sell in the US. Luckily Tesla doesn't really charge "more" (they do, but only based on legitimate costs) But that isn't stopping them from taking full advantage of their ability to prevent us from buying cheap used cars in the US.

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    Senior Member mknox's Avatar
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    Another weird thing I heard is that the Canadian seat belt receptacles (the part the buckle plugs in to) has to be red in Canada.
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