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OneSwoop denies EU 'red tape' will damage import market

Online car retailer, OneSwoop (, is denying claims that the introduction of European legislation will damage the appeal of unofficial imports.

It refutes recent reports from Glass's Guide that all imports will require proof of long-term ownership and expensive tests under a revision of the Single Vehicle Approval (SVA) scheme due in August.

OneSwoop says that UK car buyers will still be able to source low-cost new cars from the continent both privately and through parallel importers.

Tom Buehlmann, marketing director OneSwoop said: "The changes to the Single Vehicle Approval scheme apply only to so-called 'grey imports' sourced from countries outside the EU, such as Japan.

"The new regulations stating that non-type approved vehicles will have to undertake tests on aspects such as emissions and crash safety will not apply to cars sourced from the EU - under EC guidelines, cars manufactured for continental markets already comply with the same standards as models build for the British market. Nor will the regulatory changes mean that parallel importers or personal importers buying from Europe need to prove they have owned a vehicle for a minimum of 6 months."

Dave Sumner Smith, publisher of the Car Import Guide, said, "The new regulations on single vehicle approval only applies to unofficial grey imports from non-EU countries which accounts for ten per cent of new car imports.

"Every new car sold in Europe has a certificate of conformity to prove it complies with all European requirements. The total number of unofficial imports last year was around 140,000 and I expect it to remain at a similar level this year as growing numbers of car buyers wake up to the cost savings offered by the single market."

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