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HQ 953670

July 16, 1993

CLA-2 CO:R:C:M 953670 KCC


TARIFF NO.: 8407.31; 8407.32
8407.33; 8408.20.20

Mr. John Mattson
Norman G. Jensen, Inc.
3050 Metro Drive, Suite #300
Minneapolis, Minnesota 55425

RE: Transaxle; engine; transmission; clutch; Workman 3000 Series Vehicles; heading 8704; HRL 082797; EN 84.07; EN 84.08

Dear Mr. Mattson:

This is in response to your letter of November 23, 1992, which was resubmitted on January 22, 1993, with additional information, regarding the tariff classification of a transaxle for the Workman 3000 Series Vehicles under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS). Photographs, brochures and specifications were submitted for examination.


The article under consideration is a transaxle for the Workman 3000 Series Vehicles. The Workman 3000 is a relatively small 4- wheel work vehicle that features two front seats and an open cargo area for the transport of merchandise. The vehicle can be used in a variety of settings (park and sports grounds, worksites, factories, agricultural fields, etc.) and it comes in a variety of models which are portrayed in the submitted brochure.

The Workman 3000 Series utilizes the Toro transaxle which is incorporated into one die cast aluminum housing. The unit has a 3- speed synchromesh transmission for smooth, easy shifting and quiet operation, a high-low range that delivers six distinct work ratios, a manual difflock to kick in extra traction when required, high efficiency spiral bevel differential gears, and an integrated hydraulic strainer and pump. This component is directly coupled to an engine with an automotive type bell housing, and a clutch to complete an all-enclosed power train.

The information submitted states that the Workman 3300-D has a Mitsubishi 21 h.p., liquid cooled diesel engine used in Toro Groundmaster and Reelmaster products, and the Workman 3200 has a Mitsubishi 27 h.p., liquid cooled gasoline engine used in mini- trucks. The Toro transaxle precisely delivers power to the rear wheels. The attached specification sheets offer data on the transaxle's overall reduction ratios and ground speeds, the P.T.O. gear case assembly, the controls, the input-output shafts, the Bell housing(s)/clutch/flywheel, and L.C. gasoline housing, the external mounting bosses and mounting holes, the hydraulics and lubrication, optional ground speed sensing device, and the component materials (including the aluminum die cast transaxle housing, aluminum die cast P.T.O. gear case and heat treated steel shafts).


What is the classification of the transaxle designed for use in the Workman 3000 Series Vehicles under the HTSUS?


The classification of merchandise under the HTSUS is governed by the General Rules of Interpretation (GRI's). GRI 1, HTSUS, states in part that "for legal purposes, classification shall be determined according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes...."

Before we can determine the classification of the transaxle, we must determine the classification of the Workman 3000 Series vehicles. The Workman 3000 Series vehicles are classified under heading 8704, HTSUS, which provides for "Motor vehicles for the transport of goods...." See, Headquarters Ruling Letter (HRL) 082797 dated July 14, 1989, which classified a Mitsubishi lightweight vehicle under heading 8704, HTSUS.

The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (HCDCS) Explanatory Notes (ENs), although not dispositive, are to be looked to for the proper interpretation of the HTSUS. 54 Fed. Reg. 35127, 35128 (Aug. 23, 1989). EN 84.07 and EN 84.08 (pgs. 1150 and 1151) state that engines of these headings may be equipped with fuel injection pumps, ignition parts, fuel or oil reservoirs, water radiators, oil coolers, water, oil or fuel pumps, blowers, air or oil filters, clutches or power drives, or starting devices (electric or other). Additionally, the engines may also be equipped with a flexible shaft and fitted with change speed gears.

In this case, the transaxle incorporates an engine, transmission and clutch in one housing. Based on the information presented and gathered by Customs, we are of the opinion that the transaxle is similar to the engines described in EN 84.07 and EN 84.08. EN 84.07 and EN 84.08 allow clutches, power drives and change speed gears to be attached to engines and remain classified as an engine. Therefore, the transaxle is classified as an engine under heading 8407, HTSUS, which provides for "Spark-ignition reciprocating or rotary internal combustion piston engines...Reciprocating piston engines of a kind used for the propulsion of vehicles of chapter 87...", or heading 8408, HTSUS, which provides for "Compression-ignition internal combustion piston engines (diesel or semi-diesel engines)...."


The transaxle with gasoline engine for the Workman 3000 Series Vehicles is classified as a reciprocating piston engine of a kind used for the propulsion of vehicles of chapter 87 under subheadings 8407.31, 8407.32, and 8407.33, HTSUS. Classification to the exact six-digit and eight-digit level is dependent upon the cylinder capacity of the engine.

The transaxle with diesel engine for the Workman 3000 Series Vehicles is classified as compression-ignition internal combustion piston engine (diesel or semi-diesel) under subheading 8408.20.20, HTSUS.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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