Driving through Europe with Ontario plates

Okay, let’s assume that I’ve won the lottery or married the fabulously-wealthy heiress of Nokia or even (gad) earned a sizable packet myself.

So, well-off for the moment, I decide to drive through Europe on holiday (the stress of sudden wealth has blinded me to the advantages of the European train network). Being a sentimentalist, I want to bring my own car from Ontario.

How expensive and difficult is it to ship a car from Toronto to Europe and back? Is it allowed to drive a North American car in Europe? What about insurance and such?


Rigardu, kaj vi ekvidos.

do you need a navigator? conveniently located in toronto.

Driving thru Europe is expensive if you bring your own car for 2 reasons. Number one transporting it to Europe is expensive, and second taking the autobahn in Europe is expensive because you have to pay in each country. Insurance would be increadibly high because most countries do not have a speed limit. And I have no idea about the legality.

Transporting the car to Europe is expensive: No more expensive than importing a Saab. I have seen a car with a Hawaii license plate in New Hampshire. The distance from Hawaii to California is about the same as the distance from Newfoundland to Ireland.

You have to pay to use the roads in each country: Thanks for the info. Yes, you do. In Austria, it’s 70 Schillings for a week, or about US$5.

Most countries do not have a speed limit: It is only Germany that has no speed limit on the Autobahn (but that may change). Even in Germany there is a speed limit on city streets and country lanes. Outside of Germany, the highest speed limit in Europe is 150 kmph. Most countries have lower limits than this, about 120-130 kmph.

A former co-worker transported two cars from the U.S. to Italy. I can’t remember what the exact cost, but I think it was a couple of thousand dollars for one shipping container with two cars inside. The cars were worth maybe $25,000 total and he said he could still have made a profit by selling them there. (They were a Triumph TR-3 and a Porsche 356.)

I also looked into shipping a car from the US to Japan, and I recall it was around $2000 for one car. However the inspection and registration fees would have more than doubled the cost.

I figured that it would be expensive. I was trying to get an idea of the costs…


Rigardu, kaj vi ekvidos.

I don’t know about having to pay to use the roads in Europe. I know that they are free in Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, England, Scotland, Ireland and wales. I believe that Italy is free, though its been a while, and I believe that Spain is not. In Switzerland you have to pay a one-off tax/ entry fee that is valid everywhere for one year, in France you have to pay to use all the private motorways (which is most of them) but none of the other roads.