Registering a foreign plated car in Spain

Registering a Foreign Plated Car in Spain

There are a number of different reasons to import a vehicle into Spain, for example, that the price is cheaper tan buying a second hand car in Spain or that you are driving the car over from your origin country and need to re-register it within your local Province.  We are at Alicante Office can you re-register your car within any Province of Spain (including Andulucia (Malaga, Marbella) – Alicante, Almeria, Murcia, Granada, Albacete, Valencia, Barcelona, Madrid)  The road taxes and traffic costs may vary slightly within different Provinces but the process is the same.

The vehicle can stay within Spain less than 183 days without the need for it to be re-registered.  It can at times be difficult to prove the number of days the car has been in Spain if the Pólice do stop you.  most of the cars come here via the border with France and no stamping procedure takes place then many people are left with no proof of when the vehicle entered Spanish territory.  If however, your vehicle has been in Spain more than 183 days then by law you will need to re-register the vehicle onto Spanish plates.

The process of registering a car in Spain should in theory be very simple – but more often than not we have found that most clients we deal with are short of paperwork!  The below is a list of documentation that we require to be able to re-register your car.


  1. NIE (Fiscal documentation with your fiscal number  – this will be need to be not more than none year old on the date we submit the paperwork at trafico. Spanish authorities are now rejecting NIE´s that are more than one year old.  Silly policy really as this number never changes once you are issued with it.
  2. Empadronamiento Certificate (Padrón) This is a document that is issed from a local Town Hall to state that you have enrolled with the local town / Province where you are residing.  You will need this certificate to re-register a vehicle here in Spain.  No longer are title deeds (escritura) or a rental contract accepted.
  3. Copy of Passport
  4. Original V5 (UK vehicle documentation) or  vehicle documentation from country of origin.
  5. Certificate of Conformity (CoC) (On cars older than five years or more the owner may not have this document and it can be costly and time consuming to obtain from the MAnufacturer.  A Spanish Engineer therefore will draft a report (Ficha Reducida) that will be valid for the ITV (MOT) inspection

With these documents in place then the next procedure is to book an ITV test at your local ITV station.  We prepare this for you and are at hand by telephone or in person should you require any assistance during the test.  However, more often than not it is a straight-forward process.

Once the ITV has been passed and we receive all the paperwork then we start the process of re-registering the vehicle.  The process normally takes 4-5 days once we have all the paperwork in order.

For further information on how to register your car onto Spanish plates please contact us here

For a detailled breakdown of costs involved in registering a car, motorcycle or motorhome in Spain then please click on this link –





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