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NY 869576

December 18, 1991



TARIFF NO.: 8703.23.00

Mr. William J. LeClair
Trans-Border Customs Services, Inc.
One Trans-Border Drive
P.O. Box 800
Champlain, NY 12919

RE: The tariff classification of a specialized mini van from Canada

Dear Mr. LeClair:

In your letter dated December 6, 1991, on behalf of Care Concepts Canada Ltd., Quebec, Canada, you requested a tariff classification ruling. You have submitted descriptive literature.

The imported product is a modified version of a Chrysler (Dodge) Caravan mini van that is used to accommodate a driver and passengers who are confined to wheelchairs. Caravans are powered by a four or six cylinder gasoline engine. The Canadian company manufactures two different models. One is the "individual" conversion which is designed for use by the individual or family. The second is the "commercial" unit which is designed for the transportation of the disabled. This vehicle can accommodate up to three wheelchairs and three ambulatory passengers.

The basic vehicle used in the conversion is of United States origin. The modification work is performed in Canada using Canadian and/or U.S. components. The submitted literature indicates that the changes to the vehicle include lowering the mini van's floor forward of the rear axles, installing an electronic door/ramp system and relocating and modifying the suspension system. The second row bench seat is removed and the driver and front passenger seats are modified to allow for a wheelchair to occupy either of the two front seats, as well as two additional wheelchairs to occupy the space previously utilized for the second row bench seat.

Motor vehicles imported into the United States must comply with the safety regulations of the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and the air emissions regulations of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). If you have any questions concerning these regulations, it is suggested you contact these agencies. The DOT is located at 400 Seventh Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20590; the EPA is located at 401 M Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20460.

The applicable subheading for the specialized mini van will be 8703.23.00, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for other motor vehicles principally designed for the transport of persons, with spark-ignition internal combustion reciprocating piston engine, of a cylinder capacity exceeding 1,500 cc but not exceeding 3,000 cc. The rate of duty will be 2.5 percent ad valorem.

Pursuant to the United States-Canada Free Trade Agreement of 1988 (FTA), automotive goods which originated in the territory of Canada (qualifying under the rules of origin set out in chapter three of the act), that are classifiable under subheading 8703.23.00, HTS, will be entitled to a free rate of duty under the Automotive Products Trade Act upon compliance with all applicable regulations. General Note 2(c)(vii)(B)(1), HTS, states that goods imported into the Customs territory of the United States are eligible for treatment as "goods originating in the territory of Canada"... if they are goods wholly obtained or produced in the territory of Canada and/or the United States.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Section 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).

A copy of this ruling letter should be attached to the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If the documents have been filed without a copy, this ruling should be brought to the attention of the Customs officer handling the transaction.


Jean F. Maguire
Area Director

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