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Massive pricing discrepancy between Canada and the US??? Why $15,000 more in Canada?

Why is there such a massive pricing discrepancy between Canada and the US? Honestly, it can't cost $15,000 more just to drive it across the border. Add to that our increased sales tax and the added luxury car tax it brings the base model close to $100,000!!! It doesn't make any sense, the exchange rate is only 1,04 today and has held to parity for the past 4 years... so it can't be hedging against currency fluctuation. If this is all gov't screwing us with customs duties and tariffs then I would like Tesla to provide a breakdown to this discrepancy so I can take this to my MP... this is beyond ridiculous. A $62,000 car in the US should not have a 25% increase to become a 77,000 car in another country unless some serious illegal business is going down.

It's a penalty the US extracts from Canada for over-usage of the word "Eh".

From a previous thread:

“Pricing in foreign markets can be very complex, so we have taken a very straightforward, transparent approach to pricing Model S,” said George Blankenship, vice president worldwide sales and ownership experience. “Canadian base prices start with U.S. pricing, plus 6.1 percent for import duties and an additional 1.5 to 2 percent, depending upon the model, for incremental transportation costs and country specific business expenses. The total is then adjusted using the current mid-term currency exchange rate.”

So the biggest difference is the import duties Tesla has to pay to Canada.

Plus the "Eh" thingy.....

There is nothing illegal. The main difference is duty/tarrifs/taxes. By all means, complain to your MP. It won't do any good, the government likes its duties and taxes. Not only does it generate revenues for the government, it also encourages manufacturers to set up manufacturing lines in Canada. Of course in the meanwhile, Canadian consumers get screwed, I mean, get to pay the government more money.

Also the Model S does not cost $62,000 in the US. That's after a $7,500 federal tax credit. The actual price without federal tax credit is $70,000.

So free trade is not free trade?

Have you compared other car manufacturer's prices between the US and Canada? It is the exact same thing. Don't blame Tesla, yell at your government! And as shop said, you are comparing apples with oranges.

Free trade? NAFTA was carefully negotiated to help certain manufacturers and hinder others. It is complex legislation.

Don't forget to add state taxes (for most states) which is not included on Tesla's web sight.

Isn't this mostly due to taxes and tariffs? I think most US cars go for at least double in China.

OP it is taxes. NAFTA was a neat idea...well...

@Thomas N.
Funny (with two N's)! :-)
I love our northern neighbors but to me it sounds more like "ay" to me. "Eh" is whatever in lots of british-based dialects (or worse "meh"). Not that I'm a scholar - just enjoyed the chuckle and the grin.

Here is the Telsa grin, again. :-)

Here is an old thread with an explanation from GeorgeB.

Actually the price difference is quite small. The Tesla US website is misleading in that the 63,570 reflects a $7500 Federal tax credit which one may claim at a later date if one has sufficient income. At the time of purchase one must pay $71,070 plus $1500 for the leather seats which are standard in Canada. So the grand total in the US is $72,570. At today’s exchange rate of 1.04 this works out to $75,472.80 CAD. Now if you were to import it, you would have to pay duty at a rate of 6.1% which applied to the above price would bring the total to $78,491.71 CAD. The price listed on Tesla's Canadian web-page today is $78,970.00 CAD or about $478 dollars more then the US. In fact if you price a better equipped version you may find it even cheaper in Canada then the US. This is because Tesla does not pay duty on the MSRP but on the manufacturer's import price which in some industries is a mere pittance in relation to the MSRP. Furthermore, since the Tesla Model S is not NAFTA qualified, it is eligible for drawback from the US Govt. which effectively further reduces the 6.1%.

Where Tesla falls short is not including the Model S on the RIV. Given that Tesla is giving Canadians fair pricing, not unlike most ICE companies who on some of their ultra-premium models have been known to rip-off Canadians for tens of thousands, this is totally bizarre! TM has gone to the trouble of placing the Model S on the pre-clearance list and offers a North-American warranty and fair pricing but refuses to place it on the RIV. Why?

The effect of Tesla's action is that it denies anyone including Canadians who are living temporarily in the US from bringing their Model S across the border with them if they return to Canada since, by not being on the RIV, the Model S is inadmissible into Canada for individual importation.

I forgot to add that I have noticed some Canadian interest on this forum for slightly used Model S cars which are equally not admissible to Canada. If you bought one you would have to wait fifteen years, at which time the RIV would not apply and you could then import it as an antique!

The FTA requires a certain %, currently 65%, manufactured in the country selling (gradually increased from original 55%). The MS has only 55% (because of the battery).

Maybe it's a tar sands tax, eh?

It costs more in Canada because the car has a top speed of 200 kph in the Canadian configuration. The US configuration only goes 120 mph.

You can currently easily import any ICE, because they are all already an antique. No need to wait for 15 years :)

And another +1 for the Ey

Andrzej1, +1


"A $62,000 car in the US should not have a 25% increase to become a 77,000 car in another country unless some serious illegal business is going down."

Chad, please tell us what is illegal in manufacturers setting different prices for different markets.

When national chain stores advertise their prices they always exclude Alaska and Hawaii because it costs more to get it there. If Tesla has to pay more to get it to Canada then why is it so abhorrent that they charge more?

Yup! Huge differences. Currently there is a slightly used p85 for sale on Tesla Motors Club website for $98,000. It's in Detroit which is within driving distance, 350 kms but I'm not allowed to import. He is also including a set of 19 inch winter tires and rims along with the turbines.

Here in the GTA, same car is $130,000 new.

+1 Andrzej1 and thx Tesla for the love from Canada : )
Love my ms 85

Cars manufactured in the USA are not subject to duty in Canada. (unlike the 6.5% duty if made in Japan).

I think it's because multi-national manufactures (i.e. Tesla) have separate entities (i.e. Tesla Canada) that buy from the parent company. Tesla Canada may not have the buying volume to warrant the same pricing structure as Tesla USA.

There is the same discrepancy with other auto manufactures, but this difference is very significant, and seemingly unwarranted to the extent it is.

When the dollar hit parity few years ago there was an abundance of nearly new cars being imported from the states for resale in canada. The canadian dealerships were losing sales bigtime, so they were forced to bring prices more in line with the US.

The MS price in canada is right where it should be. I would love it to be cheaper, but there is a cost to shippping a vehicle larger distances, and the US dollar has a 4% edge on the loonie right now. I can't complain.

Other luxury car brands are also offering reasonable comparable prices to the US equivalent right now.

@Rob C, that isn't correct. Tesla does pay import duties. Please get your "facts" correct.

If I buy an ev before March 1, 2014, I get a $5000.00 rebate. And, a grant that pays for installation of a level 2 charger at home.

Base: $70K
Cdn: $77K
10% difference.
6.5% import duty.
~1.5% currency
~1% transportation
~1% homologation (regulatory modifications)

Hey Shop ... you may be correct. Sounds like you may be having a bad day. Sorry if I made it worse. I was basing my comment on my experience in importing a Lexus into Canada. At that time, I was told that cars manufactured in the USA are exempt from duty, but cars manufactured outside of USA are subject to the duty.

I have no other basis to make the claim that there was no import duties other than that experience.

Do you know (factually of course) what the rate is?

"At that time, I was told that cars manufactured in the USA are exempt from duty, but cars manufactured outside of USA are subject to the duty.". Read comments above - car has to have 65% parts manufactured in north america for it to be duty free, the model S is around 55% (due to the battery).


At the current exchange rate, which is closer to 4%, i think us canadians are getting a bit of a break.

Although, i do think those of us who are financing are getting raw end at 4% instead of 1.6% for the states. But i guess that rate is up to the banks and credit unions over which TSLA has little control.