I'm about to purchase a new car. I am spanish, but I live in France (and I'm still learning the language, which means I have a hard time reading the french government websites that cannot pass thought google translate).
I have been wondering what would be economically better, wether to purchase the car in Spain and import it into France or directly buying the car in France. Purchasing the car in Spain seems cheaper (The same car is some thousands euros cheaper), after going thought this guide: https://www.french-property.com/guides/france/driving-in-france/vehicle-importation-registration#
However, in the guide they mention the following about VAT:
No VAT is payable or customs declaration necessary if you are bringing your existing car into France from within the EU.
Only where it is a new car (defined as being owned less than six months or under 6,000km), being imported is there a potential VAT implication in France:
If you are non-resident (but becoming resident) and you import a new car on which no VAT has been paid (you purchased tax-free with a view to registration in France) then you will need to pay VAT in France.
If you are already resident in France you will pay VAT in France on new car purchased elsewhere in the EU. You need to ensure you buy 'tax-free' in the country of origin.
From what I understand, I would fall in the second case, and a newly bought car would need to pay the full VAT (which is around 19%). They suggest to buy it tax free so you don't pay taxes twice.
I'm wondering if I understood it right, and if so, would that make it pointless to buy it abroad, since in the end I will be paying, more or less, the same price as if I buy it on France?