By virtue of recent changes in the Motor Vehicles Act of Australia, the purchase of new and used cars from outside Australia will become much easier and cheaper for Australians from 2018. According to the amendments, personal cars may be bought and imported from other countries following standards comparable to Australia. These countries have not yet been completely disclosed, but UK and Japan are somewhere in the list. A particular amendment to the Customs Tariff Act of 1995 has repealed a duty of $12000 that was applied on used imports.
So, as a means to celebrate the good news, here is a list of few of the best cars that you can import from the UK and Japan.
BMW Alpina B4
There’s not much that this 435i leaves us wanting whether it comes to looks or performance. Although it does fall a little short of the 425bhp offered by M4, it outdoes the M series in torque. The 3.0 litre six engine takes only 4.2 seconds for 0-62 mph acceleration. Like its predecessors in the Alpina line, the B4 features a great conversion job with fresh suspension and a complex modification of the eight speed ZF transmission. If BMW Australia’s plans of bringing down Alpina products don’t fall through, well here is a great option.
Honda Civic Type R
The Australian arm of the company is yet to bring this Japanese beauty to the country. This 2.0 litre turbo front driver has the capacity to cover Nurburgring in 7 min 50.63 sec. The type R line-up was inspired by Japan’s Formula One victory in 1992 and has since then dished out beautiful sporty cars that helped revive a dying Honda breed.
When it comes to performance, this car means business. It picks up quickly at high revs and sports creative use of bracket designs and adhesive, that has added rigidity by 18%. This and the low centre of gravity are what immediately catch ones attention during the drive. It will take some time to build up but once past 3000 rpm, the car will really get going like a monster – and it sounds like one too.
For a car weighing 1720 kg, you don’t expect the kind of stability that Nismo offers even during turns at high speeds. The straightforward transparency in its controls makes you feel instantly at home, an experience further enhanced with the smooth steering and the quiet tranquillity of the engine, which easily disguises its real power.
That said, Nismo is not a car that appeals to everyone. Its unique style, especially the springs and the hollow anti roll bar in the rear are an acquired taste.
Jaguar XFRS Sportbrake
The Sportbrake is Jaguar’s pitch into the high end super estate market, a car that gives you luxury and speed at the same time. This 5.0 supercharged V8 may not give as great a sprint as say the RS6 or the E63, but is great in its own right. While the power and torque are the same as the saloon, the car features custom rear springs and dampers, with a new rear axle and anti roll bar. Because of the Aussie craze over SUV models, Jaguar Australia probably will not bring the model here any time soon. But if you want to import it, you will have to wait for the next generation XFR-S Sportbrake since the present model has already dried out.
With a horsepower equal to 66, this Japanese breed may not seem like much, but the Honda S660 is not about power. NO. The Honda S660 is about feeling – the feel of a go-kart. The mini monster has a 660 cc three-cylinder turbocharged engine with a six-speed manual gearbox (a first for a kei car) and an almost perfect front-rear weight distribution of 45-55. This open-air two-seater will have a limited supply of only 660 units for enthusiasts. As of now, the car is available for purchase only in Japan.