Anyone in CA bought a bike from Canada??

There's a guy in Canada that has great prices on yzs and will ship to CA. My concern is that there will be some registration problems over here once the bike arrives.

Has anyone in Ca bought from Canada, and if so, what was your experience? This guy says he's sold lots of bikes to Ca and has heard of no problems.

Thanks again all!!


I don't know about California ( I would think it might be fine on the YZ, but the WR might be a prob due to the red/green stickers etc..)

There is a Dealership here in Southern Oregon that brings down new Yamahas, Kawasakais, and Hondas from Canada and sells them as "USED NEVER RIDDEN" with the plastic still on the seats and all. People save a few bucks, but here are the problems that people have faced.

1. They buy the "USED Canadian" YZ426F from Brand X Dealer ( actually a Suzuki Dealership) and a month later the forks have a problem. The owner walks in the doors of the local Yamaha dealership and discover that American Yamaha will not honor any service recalls, parts warrenty work etc. because the bike is a Canadian model. ( When I worked at a Kawasaki/Honda dealership we went through this weakly with customers.

Customer " What the F#$K do you mean you can't do anything with my bike. The radiator is leaking and I just bought it 4 hours ago!!"

American Dealer "Sorry sir, but you're bike is a Canadian model and American Honda can not do anything for you. You are going to have to try and take it to a Canadian dealer and see if they can work with you on this. I know the bike is not any different, but that's how it works."

Not fun to have to tell people.

2. You decide to go race and low and behold you win a local CMC race that Yamaha is paying contingencies at. More than likely your out of luck because you didn't buy your bike from an authorized American dealership, and the VIN is Canadian.

3. This practice severly underminds the American Dealer network, and in my personal opinion is unethical. I hope this shed some light on your concern.

My '99 WR400 came from Canada (via my local Honda dealer) and there was no problem. I got that one because I was able to get it a couple months before the '99 WR's were released here in CA and the price was the same. I got a green sticker with it and I also got it street licensed. I have since renewed both the sticker (got green again) and the street registration (no problems.)

I forgot to mention... My Canadian bike wasn't restricted with the throttle stop or grey wire like the USA WR's are. Also, there are some very slight differnces in things like jetting but the manual clearly points out when there is a differnce in specs from the USA model.

The bike I have now, came from Canada via the dealer. No problems.

However, when I tried this game with a street bike, things were far more complicated.

When a manufacture builds a special version of a bike (say a California model) for the purpose of meeting legal issues (EPA, CARB...etc), the purchase of the bike is considered gray market and is illegal.

However, there are clauses for people who live in non-California areas, then move to California.

In most case, when a manufacture's microfiche shows a 49 state model, and a non-49 state model, with consideration to things like exhaust, fuel, and electronics, you're headed for trouble.

There would also be some warranty issues - if dirt bikes had them.


Thanks for the info everyone.

I don't have any moral issue with paying less for a toy. I only care about being legal to the point that I get to play with the toy and have the infamous GREEN sticker. The American Dealer network doesn't work very well IMHO if you can buy the same item in the same state and the cost can vary up to $1000!! Plus, even when you do buy in America, you get the same whopping 30 day warranty and even then you have to haggle over what is and is not covered. C'mon, this is nothing to wave the flag about and believe me, I am very pro-America!

DaveJ, I didn't know your bike was Canadian "eh." For those who don't know DaveJ...his bike runs crispy clean!

MotoGreg, I like the street setup you have on the YZ. The blinkers and lights are nice and compact...nothing hanging way out to get ripped off like on my old XR...never could keep the blinker fluid full with the covers always cracked!

Anyway, I'd love to hear more about how you did the street legalizing and where you found the light kit.

Thanks again everyone!

Ride On...


[ April 03, 2002: Message edited by: eBayThumper ]

I really dont think that there is a problem with registering your bike here in California. In fact I think the VIN numbers for the Canadian bikes do not have the special digits that flag the computers here at the DMV to give you a Red sticker. The only thing is the sales tax, I bought my bike out of state and had it shipped in. I havent tried to register it but figure that they will try to get me to pay sales tax for which I will tell them that I operated the vehicle out of state. It may take a few tries but hopefully I will be able to avoid the dreaded California sales tax.

Oh and believe me the computers do flag them, when they put in the VIN on my CR125 because I lost the sticker :) (wont tell you where it went) but the system said that my CR125 was restricted and wouldnt let them process. So they had to call Sacramento and were told that my VIN was restricted and that I should get a Red sticker.

Good Luck!!!

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