Proudly supports terrible french cars
- Sep 20, 2006
- Hull, England
- Cactus and Panda Classic
Land Rovers imported to U.S. are CRUSHED by customs for failing safety rules because they don't have airbags
The exclusive vehicle was seized by customs officers in Baltimore
Its importer had attempted to fool the authorities by changing its plate
But they spotted the ruse and deemed it unfit for the US' roads
Often selling for upwards of $100,000, this one is now worth just $30
The legendary Land Rover Defender - a favourite with the Royal Family - had failed strict US safety laws and was banned from the roads for failing to have an airbag.
All models less than 25 years old on the other side of the Atlantic are expected to have the safety feature.
As a result, there is a lucrative market for the British-made vehicles, which can fetch up to six-times their UK value, and are often sold in the US for upwards of $100,000.
This has created a lucrative black market, with the importer of this model attempting to trick customs by illegally altering the car's VIN and giving it a B registration number plate.
But their exploits fell foul of Baltimore Port's eagle-eyed border officers, who seized the car as an 'illegal and unsafe import'.
Robert Hunt, public affairs programme manager for the CBP, said: 'The Land Rover Defender did not meet the safety rules of the United states roads so therefore it had to be destroyed.
Whilst I agree the importer was a scumbag, the part that irked me was this.
Land Rover imported about 7,000 Defenders from 1993 to 1997, but it had to discontinue because they failed requirements introduced in 1998.
Defenders over 25 years old are also fitted without airbags, but all cars over this age are exempt from the ruling.
It's the same fucking car.