What needs changing when you register a RHD UK car in France?

(David Martin) #61

‘You do this in the prefecture’. Present tense.

(Patrick Early) #62

Obviously information was given in good faith in response to a request. Depressing that you think
this could be the subject of an on-line argument…

(John Scully) #63

On VW (and obviously Bentleys, Porsches, Audis, Skodas, Seats which all use pretty well the same S/W I presume) it’s not a garage type thing, it’s just a user option on one on the infotainment menus and documented in the manual. Just as simple as setting whether the headlights swivel or the duration of the courtesy lights. On some older cars it’s an actual switch behind the headlight unit.

(Paul Flinders) #64

On the SAAB 9-5 we had there was supposed to be a lever but I looked very hard without spotting anything.

The current car is a Mazda 6 which has complete servo control of the headlights but no setting that I can see or find in the documentation (I’ll bet it’s just a setting if you get the right widget to attach to the diagnostics port though).

(David Martin) #65

With 986/987 and 996/997 Porsches the Xenon headlights were switchable between RHD and LHD. It was mechanical not through software because the lights had to be removed (a 10 second task) but even then there was no switch or lever. As with many Xenon lights the quality of the switched lights depended on whether they were marked with a single arrow ->, pointing to the ‘normal’ nearside and gave a flat dip beam when switched or double headed arrows <-> which gave a proper dipped beam on both sides.
I’ve read that some modern cars use GPS to locate the car and switch the dip accordingly.
With my Ford the headlights point vaguely forward but the 6v bulbs aren’t strong enough to dazzle oncoming traffic let alone light up the kerb.

(stella wood) #66

As an aside David… where do you source your 6v battery for your Ford…??

(Elizabeth Auloni ) #67

I want to register my car UK car in France in the new year. So if i get this right, first i have to get the lights sorted, then take it to the Contrôle Technique. I take it it’s after the contrôle technique that I can apply for the new registration. Does anyone know how that works, and how long it takes? Also I’d like to know when it’s best to apply for my France driving licence, before or after I get the car registered here.

Thanks in advance to anyone who can shine some light on this.

(Mat Davies) #68

It has been said elsewhere in this thread that you do kit need to replace the headlights - adding stick on beam deflectors is sufficient for the CT.

(stella wood) #69

Registration and changing the licence… are discussed in depth all across the Forum… both are hot topics… use the Search (magnifying glass)… and/or wander down the Cars/Motoring/Insurance category…:hugs::hugs:

here’s one thread

(Elizabeth Auloni ) #70

Thanks for the info, very much appreciated.

(David Martin) #71


I’ve never needed to buy a battery for it. The batteries I have bought come from https://www.batteryset.com.

(stella wood) #72

Ah… yes… we have to get ours from UK for the 5HP… I had hoped you might say “France” :zipper_mouth_face::thinking::grin:

(David Martin) #73

I’ve updated my reply.

(stella wood) #74

Cheers David… :hugs::hugs::hugs:

(John McClain) #75


Does anyone have definitive black & white proof of the law because I am struggling to get a CT on my 2003 BMW E46 (non xenon model so no lever to switch to LHD), and every garage I take it to all tell me beam deflectors are ONLY for tourists and not residents.
I’m a dab hand at digging out info and finding pretty much anything, but this has defeated me.
Surely I don’t have to buy a set of LHD lights? Cars just not worth it :’(

Thanks in advance.

(stella wood) #76

Hello and welcome.

Please amend your Registration to show your Full Name as per our T&C’s.

If you are not sure how to do this, simply put your name here on this thread and I will amend it for you…

(Martin Gray) #77

If the car is worth less than €150 then I would scrap it…

Second hand cars in France hold their prices. I think of my LHD Hilux’ value not as what I can sell it for but the cost of a replacement.

(John McClain) #78

Indeed. Have been coming for 33 years :slightly_smiling_face:

Thanks for the link.

(John McClain) #79

Still waiting on a valid link if anyone has one, as mentioned before. All seems to have gone quiet. Starting to think it’s BS.


(Haydn E Ebbs) #80

Not 100% true. Yes you can use the UK MOT if less than 6 months old to register the car in France but actually French law states you MUST have a valid CT to drive on French roads.
ie. the car is not technically legal (although it is registered for French plates) until you get the CT.