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HQ 089799

October 4, 1991

CLA-2 CO:R:C:M 089799 DFC


TARIFF NO.: 8708.99.50

Mr. Robert D. Weakly,
Branch Manager,
Norman G. Jensen, Inc.
P.O. Box 238
Eastport, Idaho 83826-0238

RE: Campers, truck, pickup, fiberglass

Dear Mr Weakly:

In a letter dated June 4, 1991, you inquired, on behalf of Peak Manufacturing Ltd., of Alberta, Canada, as to the tariff classification under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States Annotated (HTSUSA), of pickup truck campers made of fiberglass. Descriptive literature was submitted.


The camper is produced in Canada by Peak Manufacturing Ltd. The overall length of the camper is 15 feet 3 inches, box length is 9 feet 6 inches, overall height is 7 feet 1 inch, and overall width is 7 feet 11 inches. Standard features include a full fiberglass exterior shell, a two-pound density urethane insulation, safety glass radius windows, oak interior finish for doors and trim, camper tie downs, 4-system hydraulic jacks, and an aluminum rack and ladder affixed to the outside of the camper. The interior living compartment includes a fiberglass shower enclosure, a powered roof vent in the bathroom, a refrigerator, a water pump with 30 gallon water tank, a 4-burner range with oven, 110 volt service with outlets, a sink, a dining table, full size quality spring mattress, etc.

The fiberglass camper is installed over the rear deck area (body) of a pickup truck and is used to convert the open pickup vehicle into an enclosed motor home. The camper is not permanently installed on the pickup, but it is mounted on the pickup body. It may possibly be bolted or clamped to the body, and can be attached and detached depending on the vehicle's intended use. When detached, the camper is supported by 4 legs (two long legs at the front and two shorter legs in the rear). The camper has no other use but to be installed on a pickup truck.


What provision of the HTSUSA describes the pickup truck camper made of fiberglass?


Classification of goods under the HTSUSA is governed by the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's). GRI 1 provides that "classification shall be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes, and, provided such headings or notes do not otherwise require, according to [the remaining GRI's taken in order]." In other words, classification is governed first by the terms of the headings of the tariff and any relative section or chapter notes.

You state that you were told by a Customs officer to enter the camper as a structure. Subheading 7308.90, HTSUSA, provides for other structures of iron or steel while subheading 7610.90, HTSUSA, provides for other aluminum structures. The camper involved is made of fiberglass, and therefore, the cited provisions do not apply. There is no provision in the schedule for structures of fiberglass.

You suggest that the camper may be classifiable under one of the subheadings of the HTSUSA listed below:

9406.00 other prefabricated buildings

8707.10 bodies of the vehicles of heading 8703

8707.90 bodies for other motor vehicles

8708.29 parts and accessories of motor vehicle bodies

8708.99 other parts and accessories of motor vehicles

3926.90 other articles of plastics

The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System Explanatory Notes (EN) to the HTSUSA, although not dispositive, should be looked to for the proper interpretation of the HTSUSA. See 54 FR 35128 (August 23, 1989). The EN to heading 94.06 at page 1582 reads in pertinent part as follows;

This heading covers prefabricated buildings, also known as "industrialized buildings", of all materials. These buildings, which can be designed for a variety of uses, such as housing, worksite accommodation, offices, schools, shops, sheds, garages and greenhouses, . . .

The pickup truck camper is not in the class of any of the listed exemplars. Thus it is not a building and would not be classified under heading 9406, HTSUSA.

The EN to heading 87.07 at page 1431 reads in pertinent part as follows:

This heading covers the bodies (including cabs) for the motor vehicles of headings 87.01 to 87.05.

It covers not only bodies designed to be mounted on a chassis, but also bodies for vehicles without chassis (in which case the body itself supports the engine and axles); . . .

The heading covers a wide range of bodies for various types of vehicles (e.g., passenger vehicles, lorries and special purposes vehicles). . . .

The instant camper is not provided for under subheading 8707.10, HTSUSA, as bodies for the vehicles of heading 8703, because it is not the body of the vehicle, but is mounted on the body of the pickup truck.

The EN to heading 87.08 at page 1432 reads in pertinent part as follows:

This heading covers parts and accessories of the motor vehicles of headings 87.01 to 87.05, provided the parts and accessories fulfil both the following conditions:

(i) They must be identifiable as being suitable for use solely or principally with the above- mentioned vehicles;
and (ii) They must not be excluded by the provisions of the Notes to Section XVII (see the corresponding General Explanatory Note).

In New York Ruling Letter 830498 dated July 27, 1988, Customs considered the tariff classification of reinforced plastic truck canopies under the HTSUSA. The canopies were made of fiberglass reinforced plastic with glass windows and were designed to fit on pickup trucks. These canopies were classified under subheading 8708.99.50, HTSUSA, as other parts and accessories of motor vehicles.

The fiberglass camper is complete with habitation facilities, has windows on the sides and at the rear, and a door located at the rear. The camper is identifiable as being suitable for use solely or principally with the pickup truck. It is not excluded by the provisions of the notes to Section XVII, and it is not more specifically described under another heading of the HTSUSA.

The fiberglass camper, although mounted on the body of the pickup truck, is an accessory to the entire vehicle rather than just the body. Consequently, it is properly classifiable under subheading 8708.99.5045, HTSUSA, as parts and accessories of the motor vehicles of headings 8701 to 8705, other parts and accessories, other, slide-in campers.

Classification under subheading 3926.90, HTSUSA, as other articles of plastics is precluded inasmuch as subheading 8708.99, HTSUSA, more specifically describes the fiberglass camper.


For the foregoing reasons, it is our position that the fiberglass camper is classifiable under subheading 8708.99.5045 HTSUSA,, as parts and accessories of the motor vehicles of heading 8701 to 8705, other parts and accessories, other, slide- in campers. The General Column 1 rate of duty for this provision is 3.1 percent ad valorem.

Merchandise classifiable under subheading 8708.99.5045, HTSUSA which originated in the territory of Canada is entitled to a 2.1 percent ad valorem rate of duty under the United States- Canada Free Trade Agreement upon compliance with all applicable regulations.


John Durant, Director
Commercial rulings Division

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