The new regs also close the door on odd-ball imports approved under the current SEV scheme, such as the ex-Japan factory RHD Chevrolet Blazer and Cadillac Seville.
Engine technology was also shared with sport bikes, which are designed for rider enjoyment, and less so for fuel economy - going against the idea of small, people's cars. Under the performance criterion, it's likely that cars such as the 2005 Subaru Forester STI, 2005 Mitsubishi Evo IX wagon, Nissan V35/V36 Skyline, Toyota Crown Athlete and Toyota Mark X will be imported.
At a minimum, this means all fluids and tyres must be replaced. A raft of kei cars will also meet this requirement, such as Honda S660 (which is imported under existing legislation). It can boast t-tops, targa, or fully convertible capabilities.
 As the 1980s progressed, kei cars became increasingly refined, losing their utilitarian origins as Japanese customers became ever better off. Registered Accredited Workshops (RAWs) can now only comply a certain number of a SEV vehicle type. Keis were not allowed to be driven any faster than 40 km/h until the mid-sixties, when the kei speed limit was increased to 60 km/h (37.3 mph). Sign up or login to join the discussions! All rights reserved. Similar Japanese categories exist for microvans, and Kei trucks. H.R.2628, the "Imported Vehicle Safety Compliance Act of 1988.  Meeting the stricter standards which were to be introduced in 1975 would be problematic for manufacturers of kei cars. Until now, most buyers have been from those nations with more relaxed import restrictions, like the UK, Australia, New Zealand, various other European nations, Africa, and India. When you buy a new car in Japan, your initial inspection is on first registration and is good for three years. Did you grow up playing Gran Turismo, marveling over the weird and wonderful Japanese market (JDM) cars that never made it to these shores?
However under the 2018 RVS that may change: the feds have said that, under the RVS, it "will work with State and Territory regulators to establish appropriate requirements for these vehicles".
These are fully functional cars, just shrunk down in stature. Australia's No.1 place to buy, sell or research a caravan or camping equipment. Australia's No.1 place to buy, sell or research a bike, and read all the latest news and reviews.  These interim versions (with displacements ranging between 443 and 490 cc) were "feelers", developed to see if indeed a continued market existed for the kei car. , Emissions laws were another problem for the kei car industry in the mid 1970s. As the kei cars became larger and more powerful, another benefit appeared, as exports increased considerably. These vehicles sprang out of the long-ago desire to grow the auto industry in the country while acknowledging that most Japanese couldn't afford much more than a motorcycle during the rebuild of the post-WW2 economy. Kei cars are size- and displacement-restricted, sure, but they are still relied on, beat into the ground, and responsible for untold amounts of commerce within Japan. But maybe you aren’t really into tiny sports cars and want something a bit more practical. There is an option to DIY it.
Known as the ‘25 Year Rule,' H.R.2628 essentially requires auto enthusiasts to wait 25 years to the month from when a vehicle was first manufactured before it can be legally imported if the vehicle wasn’t originally meant for sale in the US market. Those tiny cute cars you see in Japan that vaguely represent our smart cars or Fiats are known as "kei cars." You still need to get an import licence for any vehicle and, if it's imported under a SEV criterion, it has to be on the SEV list and be complied by a Registered Automotive Workshop (RAW).
There are very few camper vans or motor homes purpose-built by vehicle manufacturers in Japan, so the problem there will be finding one. You'll pay a RAW about $2000 for such compliance under the current scheme; it's too early to estimate costs under the new scheme. 2628 at this time.
Import a kei car made before 1990, and they could be even smaller! - Apr 26, 2018 12:30 pm UTC. Read our affiliate link policy. Sure, there are various places in the US that will smuggle vehicles newer than 25 years into the country and play the "state legal" game (where they act like state legality somehow overrides federal law), but this isn't true. So if a 1992 model weighs 1500kg, its engine has to develop a minimum of 165kW. Somewhere between $4,000-$7,500 is the expected price at auction depending on condition.
This is to basically make life easier for local conversion specialists. Throughout the 1970s, the government kept whittling away at the benefits offered to kei vehicles, which combined with ever stricter emissions standards to lower sales drastically through the first half of the decade. What sorts of cars does Japan offer in order to make all these rules, all these costs, and the effort of transporting something across an ocean worth it? There have been no SEV applications yet under the new rules - let alone any approvals - so the vehicles below are what we estimate will be allowed in.
All manufacturers of kei cars were clamoring for increased engine displacement and vehicle size limits, claiming that the emissions standards could not be met with a functional 360-cc engine. That means the vehicle you buy will typically be running and can’t have any major leaks.
The company never offered it for sale in the US, which means Paul Walker’s famous R34 Skyline GT-R in 2 Fast 2 Furious isn’t legal for import. Under the existing SEVS requirements, vehicles "must undergo a range of modifications and maintenance procedures to ensure that they meet minimum safety and environmental standards". Car must not be lower than 10cm from the ground to the exhaust.
So existing Welcab (factory) mobility models such as the Toyota Alphard will continue to be imported. If you, too, always wanted to drive JDM exotica like a Nissan Skyline, Toyota Century, or Mazda Cosmo, prepare yourself for good news. Vehicles have to meet or exceed our emissions standards and be a hybrid or a micro-car.
 Due to the difficult economic environment, low-price cars sold well and 1981 marked another successful year as Japanese midget car sales reached their highest since the 1970 record (at 1,229,809 units for cars and commercials).
Those of us in the US have instead enjoyed some of the most strict import rules in the world—again, 25 years of waiting thanks to H.R. Powered by the same engine as the AZ-1 shown above (though this time mounted in the front), the Cappuccino has a three-stage roof option to perhaps make it the most aesthetically unique of this group. The kei car category was created by the Japanese government in 1949, and the regulations have been revised several times since.  Sales began in 2009 to fleet purchasers and in 2010 to the general public. Production started in 1992, so there are already a few here in the USA.
For 1992 models, the power-to-weight ratio threshold is 110kW per tonne.
New legislation will this year change which vehicles can be imported into Australia. As it is sitting at an international port, you can’t simply show up and demand your cargo; usually you have to make an appointment and be escorted. To satisfy this criterion, the vehicle must have been originally manufactured as a campervan or motorhome by the manufacturer or a company commissioned by the manufacturer. To pass as a SEV performance import, the vehicle has to meet a power-to-weight threshold, based on the year it was made. The only state that you can currently do that with newer vehicles is the Northern Territory. Working with them, it's easier to locate a vehicle of interest that’s up for auction. The kei car regulations were revised in March 1990, allowing engines an increase of 110 cc (6.7 cu in) in displacement, and the overall car length to be increased by 100 mm (3.9 in). As before, a SEV can be new or used. Exhaust can't be louder than 74dB (it's either 74db or 94, I don't know) Gauges aren't allowed on the dash or anywhere above the steering wheel, so yes, gauges on the pillar are illegal.
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