If your car is registered within the EU
As long as your car is registered in another EU country, you can drive it in Germany for up to six months. We recommend that you obtain a German translation of your car's registration documentation. If you will be in Germany for longer than six months you will need to organise registration and car taxes. The Zollamt (Customs Office) is responsible for registration and car taxes - see here for more details.
If your car is registered outside the EU
You may need to pay import duties and VAT. If your car is for private use and you have owned it for the past six months you will be exempt from these charges. Please check with the Customs Office to ascertain your eligibility.
If you are coming to Germany to study
You do not need to register or pay tax as long as you can show proof you are enrolled in an educational institution.
How to register your vehicle
To register your vehicle please contact the relevant local Karlsruhe office (some will offer online appointments for your convenience):
Bürgerbüro K8 - Kaiserallee 8 (main office)
Bürgerbüro Durlach - Pfinztalstr.33
Bürgerbüro Mitte - Marktplatz in the Rathaus, Karl-Friedrich-Str. 10
Bürgerbüro Ost - Beuthener Str. 42
Bürgerbüro Süd - Steinhäuserstr. 22
Ortsverwaltung Grötzingen - Rathausplatz 1
Ortsverwaltung Hohenwettersbach - Kirchplatz 4
Ortsverwaltung Neureut - Neureuter Haupstr. 256
Ortsverwaltung Stupferich - Kleinsteinbacher Str. 16
Ortsverwaltung Wettersbach - Am Wetterbach 40
Ortsverwaltung Wolfartsweier - Rathausstr. 2
You will need to bring your vehicle to the place of registration. Registration costs between 26.30-58.00 Euros and can be paid with an EC card and PIN or with cash.
How to tax your vehicle
Annual vehicle tax (Kfz-Steuer) is based on the age and size of your vehicle and is automatically withdrawn from your bank account once a year by the Customs Office (tax calculators are available online). You will need to complete the relevant form for this to be arranged. Please see here for more details.
Documents to bring with you
Please check carefully with the Customs Office which documents you will need to bring with you as you will not be able to register your vehicle if you do not provide this information (absolutely no exceptions).
Documents may include:
- A form of identification (passport or ID card)
- Residence registration papers (Anmeldeformular)
- Vehicle license plates and registration papers
- Proof that the vehicle is roadworthy if it is older than three years
- (HU - Hauptuntersuchung)
- General Inspection
- Receipt or bill of sale for the vehicle
- Proof of insurance (eVB Nummer
- elektronische Versicherungsbestätigung)
- you can obtain this number from your insurance company
- European Certificate of Conformity ( EG Übereinstimmungsbescheinigung) issued by the manufacturer or their agent
- A TÜV/DEKRA certificate of roadworthiness and emissions testing in accordance with § 21 STVZO, if you do not have a Certificate of Conformity
- Customs clearance certificate (if from a non-EU country)direct debit authorization for vehicle taxation (Einzugsermächtigung für Kfz-Steuer)