Registering A Classic VW Camper Van In France

I hope there is someone out there who can help me, as browsing the web and asking for advice locally has left me totally confused.

I have retired early and live most of the time in Civray, Viennne. I own a 1966 VW Split Screen Camper Van which I have recently driven across from Scotland.

It is presently MOTd, taxed and insured in the UK. The insurance is an Agreed Value insurance policy and entitles me to up to 3 months travel in Europe.

I am investigating registering the vehicle here in France and therefore getting the use of it all the year round.

Any advice I have managed to get so far indicates that this would be a complicated and costly procedure, mainly due to the fact that the vehicle is so old.

I would be most grateful for any members who have had experience in this kind of situation.

I didn't have to do anything as it turned out with regard to the gas installation. (Perhaps because it is 48 years old). No questions were asked in this regard for the CT. As I said the CT is for 5 years instead of 2 years and I have insured it here in France. It would be far too much of a hassle, not too mention an expense, taking it back and forth to the UK / Scotland every year for an MOT. It is now a French registered vehicle with no road tax to be paid. Serial Kombi, over in Le Versoudis, 38420, is a French online classic VW company (website in English) that can supply spare parts at a fraction of the delivery charges of UK based companies and this also is a bonus. So all-in-all, after much paper work etc, I can now enjoy my van here in France.

Being a camper van you have the additional task of getting the CT for the habitation including bringing all the gas etc up to French standards. Because of this we have chosen to pay more for the insurance to have a 365 days per year policy for travel abroad via the Camping Club. We are therefore able to keep the registration in the UK. Just need to take the van back once a year for its MOT.

It is a certificate from the Fédération Francaise des Véhicules d'Epoque. For old vehicles, a means of getting a Carte Gris, is by registering it as a véhicule de collection. It also means that the CT is every 5 years instead of every 2 years.

I am sorry, I have only noticed this query. I have not been on the forum for some time and I wasn't notified of your post. I hope that you have progressed in your endeavours without my help.

Michael A.

What is a FFVE, please?

Hi Ian

Can you provide me with details / procedures as to how to go about getting a safety certificate for the gas cooker in a camping van here in France?

Michael A.

Hi Ian

Can you provide me with details / procedures as to how to go about getting a safety certificate for the gas cooker in a camping van here in France?

Michael A.

Hi Ben

Have filled in all the form except two items.

  • (J.3) Carrosserie (désignation nationale):
  • (P.6) Puissance adminstrative nationale:

I couldn't find a suitable translation for these terms to help me understand what was required.

Also, do I have to provide a French translation to any documents that i have to provide?

Michael A.

Michael, for help on getting a translation done, go here

Hi Ian

I am based in the town of Civray in the Vienne, in Poitou-Charentes. Two months seems awful long. My UK insurance only allows me three months here and I have only about 6 or 7 weeks to go before I have to take the van back.

It is an Agreed Value insurance policy. Can you get that sort of policy here in France?

Also, what about translations of any documents?

Michael A

Hi Michael,

I am going through it now for my 4 classic VW campers and have found a French contact who imports for the US to help me thorough it.

There is a new (from Jan 2012) system now in place and you can send a form to the FFVE and they will verify that your van is over 30 years old, you then need to go to the prefecture and then to get a controle technique and that's you.

it sounds simple but it probably isn't. The FFVE can take a about 2 months to get the form back to you so allow a while for the whole process.

I have also heard horror stories about campers being imported but I'll not scare you with those now.

out of interest where are you based?


Have a look here, Michael.

There are couple of other links on the Useful Links page to discussions on registering UK cars and a group for classic car owners where you may find what you're looking for.

Thanks for the link Ben. Will investigate further. Need to translate all the information. I am aware that the gas cooker may have to enter the equation in the case of a camper van also.

I imported and registered a 1970, nearly mint condition Ford Mustang on a "Carte grise collection" for cars older than 30 years. I followed the procedure required for cars who don't have a carte grise, i.e. are registered outside France, because at that age it's extremely difficult to get a proof of conformity. I wasn't sure if this was the right way to go, but it worked just fine...

See this link (on the bottom you'll find the the form to be used under "procedure complete d'immatriculation")

I additionally had to get a French contrôle technique especially for vintage cars, but that was only 125 Euros, so in all it cost me around 200 Euro's.