Government makes it easier to indulge our love of cars.
Hidden within a whole lot of bureaucratic terms in an government announcement yesterday, was a seemingly-insignificant update to some of Australia’s legal requirements for motor cars on our shores. Where potential owners of left-hand drive cars along with those seeking to import rare, specialist cars would have previously had to contort themselves and their cars around design regulations and safety requirements. This won’t be the case for much longer, though.
In a statement by Paul Fletcher MP, the minister for urban infrastructure, a revised bill that will see parliamentary review by the end of the year, the government will be seeking to “modernise and strengthen the laws governing road vehicles when first supplied to the Australian market.” In essence, the process of getting a car onto the road legally will soon be revamped and streamlined, and will see various little changes that will ultimately result in a big difference.
As part of the legislative retooling, there are special caveats and allowances being made for irregular, specialist, and high-performance enthusiast vehicles. This particular revision will see Australians finally able to play host to some of the worlds’ most valuable and beautiful hypercars, along with anything else that can meet any one of the following criteria:
- Mobility: Manufactured from the outset or factory-fitted with mobility-enhancing technology that can improve the quality of life, assisting those with disabilities.
- Rarity: Total global production of the vehicle make is below 3,000 units annually, or total production of the model is less than 1,000 units annually, or total global production of the variant is less than 100 units annually. Vehicles that meet this criteria are permitted to maintain left-hand drive configuration, though they will need authorisation from the relevant agreements from the home state or territory for use on public roads.
- Environmental Performance: A vehicle that was designed and engineered with technology based on an engine or power source alternate to internal combustion, or a vehicle in a micro-car subcategory that focuses on low power and low emissions.
- Campervans and Motorhomes: Manufactured as such, and not a third-party conversion.
- Performance: Based on a graduated threshold formula measured from 110kW/tonne from 1992, with an increment of 1kW/tonne per annum following.
- Left-Hand Drive: Manufactured originally in this format and never offered in right-hand drive in any market. Cars that fall under this category will have to be converted to right-hand drive before being allowed on public roads however, due to safety.
“Weighing these issues up against the modest benefits of the personal import arrangements – including price reductions estimated to be less than 2 per cent across the market – the Government has concluded that the benefits do not justify the cost and complexity of this particular change. The reforms will provide increased consumer choice including by streamlining and improving the existing pathways for importing specialist and enthusiast vehicles.” — Hon. Paul Fletcher MP, Minister for Urban Infrastructure, Member for Bradfield NSW
With these revisions coming into effect from 2019, it opens the doors to well-heeled petrolhead on our shores to indulge their passion to own and run rare, collectible classic cars as well as cutting-edge supercars, like the McLaren P1, the Ferrari LaFerrari, and the almighty Bugatti Chiron. If any of our readers have been waiting for an opportunity like this to turn up, let us know in the comments below exactly what you plan to bring to our shores. We’d love to hear from you.
Stay tuned to CarShowroom as we bring you more information as it comes.