Hi please let me revive this important thread..
As mentioned above the best approach for the Insights community is to have model/type approval for the US/JAP versions of this hybrid, now such a "homologisation" would be valid for the entire EU and perhaps help others someway in the middle of the legal jungle (Norway, Swiss, etc..)..
Given that Insights as factory made hybrids are slowly reaching their usefull productive lifespan, this model approval might have even more sense now, because pricing might drop (against new hybrids on the after/market). And most importantely, Insights could get another life as full EV individual conversion a task for which they are great platform! Now, individual EV conversions are best achievable if you start with already SVA or national technical inspection equivalent registered car.
There is a list of practical steps we can pursue to determine validity of this effort:
1. Firstly, we have to determine as to whether some EU member country has already issued this kind of model/type approval.
There are almost 30countries now, so chances are that someone, somewhere has done it in the past! However, take into account that easiest individual approvals of imports are not upheld by other national authorities (you can't legalize it elsewhere) - it has to be that costly (1-3k EUR) national model/type registration or the highest "global" model approval for the whole EU which US/JAP Insights apparently don't have as they weren't meant for the market anyway..
I'll ask our national office in Prague, Czech Rep. how costly is to order such a "study" or for any help in that regard..
2. Secondly, we can pick and choose one specific country somewhere not far from the Belgium/German major harbours and with the lowest rates for this model/type approval were forum member resides. The procedure should be almost the same everywhere..
In my location (lots of US imports) they (DEKRA) suggest to have the following basic arrangement in mind for the easiest/least costly procedure:
- good technical/working vehicle
- knowledge of full tech. specification for the car
- the existence of EU based similar model (if lights and other parts don't comply)
Obviously it is more detailed:
PS Also one has to take into account the entire cost for the import if we get the model approval:
- US price
- shipping to EU harbor + local destination
- customs 10% (less for older?) and VAT ~15-20%
- SVA/technical inspection and non EU import registration fee