European Marques of the Smog-Era
European cars were coming on strong in the 70s. Most found in the U.S. are federally-certified vehicles. However…..
Popular in the 70s and early 80s were ‘grey market’ vehicles. These were European-spec vehicles imported via means other than the manufacturer’s dealer network. Sometimes the vehicle imported this way was legalized though changing lighting, bumpers, and emissions equipment to meet U.S. laws, then having the EPA and DOT issue exemptions for minor issues.
Sometimes, the vehicles were imported under legal loopholes and other ‘grey’ areas. At times they would later get confiscated and destroyed by the Feds for not meeting safety or emissions requirements.
Fortunately, the smog-era was over 25 years ago. Vehicles meeting this age can be imported to the U.S. without worry, once taxes and fees are paid, of course. Some of the vehicles we feature here might be a model in the ‘grey’ area.
Click the marque of your choice to learn more.