Ukrainians cut cars in half to reduce import tax at customs

August 3, 2011 · 54 comments

Today I received some tax saving wisdom from a taxi driver in Ukraine. He told me that people who import cars to Ukraine sometimes cut the car in two separate pieces and carry it through the customs this way. By doing this, they save a fortune on import tax. A car carried in two pieces is seen as spare parts and therefore is taxed at a much lower rate than a normal car.

When in Ukraine, the car is welded back into one piece. After that, it’s usually sold locally at a good price. I looked through forums and apparently this is a common practise in developing countries, particularly in post-Soviet states such as Ukraine.


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{ 24 comments }

Tom August 4, 2011 at 2:31 pm

Lovely.

Rob August 4, 2011 at 10:51 pm

Ha! Clever.

Mike August 5, 2011 at 12:44 am

No it’s not clever, it’s highly dangerous. There are severe stability concerns in case of a crash. Some guys even use the same technique to combine 2 halfs of accident cars in order to get a saleable one.

This sucks big time (pardon my French).

Fito August 5, 2011 at 8:04 am

Quite stupid. Send the car without the engine and some other “vital” parts and then send the rest separately. Rebouild it later and that’s it.

mike August 5, 2011 at 12:08 pm

Would you want to drive down the road in a car welded together by Ukrainians? I’ve lived there and I sure wouldn’t.

Guy August 5, 2011 at 12:54 pm

that exactly the first thing I said, theres a reason these areas are so poor; they’re retarded.

Sucks August 5, 2011 at 5:38 pm

Not so clever!! It’s STUPIDITY!! sucker keeping people’s life in risk!!

oscar August 5, 2011 at 6:16 pm

Those cars are for russians, so who cares if they are not safety.

Danny Noonan August 5, 2011 at 9:47 pm

The tax is levied on all full-body vehicles, irrespective of the existence of an engine. Either the car gets sawed in two, or the tax gets paid.

The only thing stupid- besides riding in one of those- is the construction of the tax involved.

Andrew August 6, 2011 at 10:16 pm

Ok, so the $64K question (or however much they save on tax in Rubles) is how much does it cost to re-weld the frame, re-attach wiring, hydraulics ect. if you cut it in half in the simplest way? I don’t understand how you could ever make the cars pictured drivable again. Is there a photo of a car rebuilt from this condition?

Itchy Bites August 6, 2011 at 10:29 pm

@Andrew, same guys told me that the rate for re-welding the car was $300 in most car repair shops in Ukraine.

Glenn Jericho August 8, 2011 at 1:59 am

Do you really think people who grew up driving their Yugos through Chernobyl rush-hour traffic care THAT much about “stability concerns” when driving their patchwork Beemer?
Just sayin’…
;)

Alan August 12, 2011 at 1:40 pm

This also happens in the US. Friend of mine unknowingly bought a used car built from two wrecks and welded together back in about ’83. The frame wasn’t straight and no front-end shop was able to keep it from destroying front tires. He finally sold it at a significant loss just to get rid of it. And unlike the car lot (“As-Is No Warranty”), he warned the buyer about it.

Pain August 20, 2011 at 11:32 am

Thank you for your retarded comment @Guy !

Roman October 5, 2011 at 1:35 pm

There was no Yugos in Ukraine and they never did drive those cheap american alternatives damn ass

Roman October 5, 2011 at 1:40 pm

the rewedding process cost $300 , but you saving yourself $28,000 in import tax…

SARJ January 3, 2012 at 5:31 am

COME ON GUYS, DOESN’T LOOK LIKE ANYONE HERE THINK LITTLE MORE THAN ITS NOT POSSIBLE TO GET IT ON THE ROAD AGAIN AND SAFE,I’D SAY IT IS POSSIBLE IF WHOEVERE IS WELDING IT TAKES IN CONSIDERATION THE SAFETY ASPECT BY ADDING AND BRACING THE CHASSIS. I AM AN AIRCRAFT MECHANICAL ENGINEER BY TRADE AND IF YOU SEE HOW AEROPLANE ARE PATCHED RIVETED AND WELDED , YOU WOULD NOT FLY IN ONE,SO WHOEVER THINKS THAT ITS IMPOSSIBLE TO WELD IT BACK AND BE DRIVEN SAFELY,DO YOUR HOMEOWORK WELL AND TALK TO A BRITISH BOILMAKERS AND THEY WILL EXPLAIN TO YOU HOW ITS DONE.

soubriquet February 6, 2012 at 9:11 pm

Some of the commenters above don’t seem to know that Ukrainians are not Russians.

Alex August 12, 2012 at 8:07 am

Hi,guys!
I’m from Kazakhstan, ex-part of USSR. You talk right about safety, but…
For example, I have a dream – Aston Martin DB7 or DB9. I even can get money for it, but I can’t buy it! We have now very stupid law. I have no right to import that car, because of it’s age! (we call it “democracy” here, yeah..) So, the only way to get it is to cut it. But, in this case, I can not to legalize this car!!!! No way out! F***k!

Dave November 11, 2012 at 6:40 am

I would assume by now there are businesses established to reassemble the vehicles. If done right it is pretty safe, anyone who has ever ridden in a limousine has been in a car that was cut in half and then put back together … Just saying

Dave November 11, 2012 at 6:51 am

Pretty brilliant way to save some money and perfectly safe if done correctly which is not to difficult to do if your re-attaching the two same pieces that came apart, not so much if your trying to make one good car out of two broken ones.

Bob January 15, 2013 at 4:47 pm

It’s about profit, not safety and people! Decades ago I’ve seen abortive car repairs from people who thought they did a good job! With sacrifice, skill and a ‘Few $ More’ they could make a ‘safe’ vehicle or at the least a hell of a lot more so (I’ve witnessed the results of subsequent crashes with ‘correctly’ joined/repaired cars) with staggered cuts and re welding to manufacturers original spot welds. Similar to correct crash repairs to cat B/D but that would cut into profit. The brake lines and electrics are the least of the issues. That they may ‘butt weld’ these cars and sell them as roadworthy! frightens the hell out of me! (bet they wouldn’t put their mother in it?!)

Ben Merc March 31, 2013 at 7:53 pm

Just drive it over the border.
Reminds me of Herbie LOL.

Bodas, organizacion de Bodas, vestidos sobre novias, Coches respecto de boda May 6, 2013 at 2:03 pm

Una boda encima de el periodo, encima de una casamiento o a el más ideal estilo andaluz. Siempre que buscas una boda originario no te pierdas todo lo en comparación a las fincas de el grupo INBodas pueden ofrecerte con el fin de que los día más feliz de tu vida sea un derroche respecto de magia y particularidad.

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