Leased car in Germany - driving in Switzerland

Hi all,

Question regarding my situation:

I have a Tesla on a leasing contract in Germany (1.5 y to go).

Planning to move to Zürich for good this autumn. If I ask for Form 15.30, can I still drive my Tesla car with my German plates for 24 months since my arrival in Switzerland?

This will allow me to finish the leasing in Germany and decide if I want to keep the car (and register in CH) or return it to the leasing company in Germany.

No, the plates need to be changed within a year. You also need to inform the leasing company that you are moving outside of the EU. It will be up to them if you can register the car here at all.

there is no way to extend this period to 1.6 years before I switch the plates?


And you better check with the leasing company as well and check your contract.

Nope. And it is very unlikely that the leasing company will agree to it in any case.

they do it for CH (…#panel1_21690b ) as many people have the same issue tbh. They’ll ask for a person to be the ‘guarantee’ for the leasing company - as a contact in Germany, not the one paying the leasing.

They give you the ownership documents and you can fully register your car in CH while you pay the leasing in DE. Its case by case but there is clearly a process outlined. I just want to avoid it and change the plates when the car becomes mine (in 1.6 y), clearly that is not an option…

would the 12 months be counted since the first registration in CH or you could theoretically wait 90 days after the first registration, then ask for 15.30 at the 89th day - get the extension for 12 months... we are almost at 1.6 years ;-)

Only if you keep your main residence in Germany. That requires regular returns, probably weekly given Munich's proximity. If wife and child remained in München for a time, the formal acceptance of such a situation (register in Zug as Wochenaufenthalter) should be a mere formality. Not only would that give you time to find an apartment without the stress of having a newborn with you, you'd also be past the three months probation period during which the notice period is one week only.

Caveat: Your tax residence would still be in Germany for that time, half a year or whatever.

You really think the Swiss are stupid?? You know you have to declare the car when you import it and not months after?

And if you get caught out there will be one whopper of a bill to be paid for the illegal importation of the vehicle.

Not really. IIRC it's form 15.30 that gives you two years, after which the status is re-evaluated (and potentially extended).

I was wondering where people are getting this 2 years from, maybe from here:…ts–etc–.html

It does not say what “certain conditions” means (not even in the German version). And what is the point of “duty unpaid” for 2 years if the license plates must be exchanged after 1 year…

Imagine that it would work, how would you return the leased car with Swiss plates to Germany again?

My suggestion leaves OP's center of life in München for some time. See Wochenaufenthalter.

Assuming plates won't need to be changed if they grant 24 months.

I'll pass the border tomorrow and ask for 15.30 also will call the Strassenverkehrsamt on Mon - so we will have the full version and post here.

And did you check with the leasing company if you can export the car???

Don‘t underestimate that issue.

A) Should Strassenverkehrsamt permit a 24-month period of driving with German plates - even if this requires an exception to be requested, there would be no necessity to undergo car registration for 24 months (don't see the value of having CH plates if I can use DE ones legally). The leasing agreement and insurance would remain in effect in Germany w/ international coverage for CH.

B) In the event that Strassenverkehrsamt allows driving for 12 months with German plates, use this option for a year. Following that, I will proceed with registering the car in Switzerland and acquiring local insurance. Santander permits the registration of a leased vehicle from Germany in Switzerland, its on their site and has been confirmed (will cost some money though).

I am inclined towards selecting option 1 - as is the easiest, provided it is fully legal. It seems completely unnecessary to default to option B, if the option of driving on German plates for 24 months is indeed permissible.

It's worth asking for option A. If the answer is NO - then option B is the only option.

You are still ignoring a very important point. It is not your car, you do not own the car.

Maybe its just me, but don't understand your point.

When you lease a car in Germany, you register the car on your name (not the leasing company). There are two documents issued - small leaflet (Teil 1) for you to keep in the car - allowing you to drive - and a main one (Teil 2 with which you could sell the car).

The main document is then kept by the leasing company until you repay the car. Quite efficient.

Under option B) above, the leasing company will allow me to register the car in CH by sending me Teil 2 to do so (then I provide it back).