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Third Edition Australian Design Rules

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The Third Edition Australian Design Rules (ADRs) are national standards for vehicle safety, anti-theft and emissions. The standards apply to vehicles newly manufactured in Australia or imported as new or second hand vehicles, and supplied to the Australian market.

For vehicles manufactured up until July 1989, the application of the ADRs is the responsibility of the state and territory governments. Vehicle users should consult with their state or territory transport authority for the Second and Third Edition ADRs that apply to these vehicles.

For vehicles manufactured after July 1989, the application of the ADRs is the responsibility of the Australian Government under the Motor Vehicle Standards Act 1989. Vehicle users should consult with this department for the Second and Third Edition ADRs that apply to these vehicles.

The Third Edition ADRs were made national standards by Determinations Nos 1 and 2 of 1989 published in Special Gazettes Nos S 264 and S 291 dated 2 August and 1 September 1989 respectively. However, the standards first became effective from 1 July 1988 to ensure that the transition from previous technical requirements was made smoothly. In addition, not all Third Edition ADRs applied as from 2 August 1989. Importantly, the implementation of the lighting ADRs was postponed until 1 October 1991 and 1 July 1992 for some vehicle categories.

The Third Edition ADRs were re-made as national vehicle standards in September 2006 to comply with the requirements of the Legislative Instruments Act 2003 (LIA) and registered on the Federal Register of Legislative Instruments (FRLI) (www.comlaw.gov.au). The list of Third Edition ADRs below has each version (e.g. /00) linked to the FRLI web site, where the ADRs, as vehicle standards (including amendments and compilations) and explanatory statements, can be found.

The ADRs apply to vehicles in accordance with the “applicability dates” set out at the beginning (usually in an applicability table) of each standard. These dates (and not the year listed in the title of the standard—which in many cases only represents when the ADR was re-made for the FRLI) are the key to identifying which ADR applies for a particular year of manufacture of a new or used vehicle.

Users of the ADRs should be aware that in some circumstances ADRs referred to here can have application to vehicles other than new vehicles. There are two ways this can occur:

Firstly, other laws may call up the ADRs. For example, each state and territory generally requires vehicles manufactured to a particular set of ADRs to continue to comply with them (or a later version) while in-service.

Secondly, the Motor Vehicle Standards Act 1989 call up the ADRs for used commercially imported vehicles. This generally requires vehicles to comply with the ADRs applicable when the vehicles were originally manufactured (Note: used imported trucks exceeding 12 tonnes and used imported buses with more than 12 seating positions must comply with the latest ADRs). Registered Automotive Workshop Scheme for Used Imported Vehicles

ADR Numbering and Amendments

  • ADR X/00 indicates the original version of ADR X
  • ADR X/01 indicates the first revised version of a standard where the amendment increases in stringency, includes additional vehicle categories, or changes content significantly. ADR X/02 is the second revision, and so on.

Minor changes which do not increase stringency do not result in a new version.

Where there is a reference to another ADR within an ADR, the formal designation “ADR X/” , together with the standard's short title is generally used.

The ellipsis should be taken to indicate that the latest rule is being specified.

A later ADR version of the same ADR may be complied with instead of the earlier version. An earlier version (or sometimes a different ADR) may be complied with instead, only if it is listed as an “Acceptable Prior Rule” near the beginning of the applicable ADR.

For general enquiries or feedback relating to vehicle safety, anti-theft or emissions standards, or for related standards not available through the FRLI web page, please e-mail: standards@infrastructure.gov.au

Third Edition ADRs—Applicability Summary

The following summaries are guides to the applicability of the ADRs in force for the vehicle categories used in the ADRs.

  • L—Category Vehicles—Two and Three Wheeled Vehicles [PDFPDF: 447 KB]
  • M—Category Vehicles—Passenger Vehicles [PDFPDF: 366 KB]
  • N—Category Vehicles—Goods Vehicles [PDFPDF: 295 KB]
  • T—Category Vehicles—Trailer [PDFPDF: 332 KB]

Definitions and Vehicle Categories

Sets out definitions for many terms used in the ADR and defines the categories used in the ADR applicability tables.

Definitions and Vehicle Categories

ADR—Harmonisation

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to facilitate the automatic acceptance of the latest version of United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) regulations that have been adopted as alternative standards within the ADRs and have been ‘applied' by Australia under the UNECE 1958 Agreement.

/00

ADR 1—Reversing Lamps

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the photometric requirements for reversing lamps which will warn pedestrians and other road users that the vehicle is about to move or is moving in the reverse direction, and which during the hours of darkness will aid the driver in reversing manoeuvres.

/00

ADR 2—Side Door Latches and Hinges

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for side door retention components, including latches, hinges, and other supporting means, to minimise the likelihood of occupants being thrown from a vehicle as a result of impact.

/00 /01

ADR 3—Seats and Seat Anchorages

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for 'Seats', their attachment assemblies, their installation and any head restraint fitted to minimise the possibility of occupant injury due to forces acting on the ‘Seat' as a result of vehicle impact.

/00 /01 /02 /03

ADR 4—Seatbelts

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for seatbelts to restrain vehicle occupants under impact conditions, facilitate fastening and correct adjustment, assist the driver to remain in his ‘Seat' in an emergency situation and thus maintain control of the vehicle, and protect against ejection in an accident situation.

/00 /01 /02 /03 /04 /05

ADR 5—Anchorages for Seatbelts

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for belt anchorages so that they may be adequately secured to the vehicle structure or seat and will meet comfort requirements in use.

/00 /01 /02 /03 /04 /05

ADR 6—Direction Indicators

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the requirements for a device mounted on a motor vehicle or trailer which when operated by the driver signals the intention to change the direction in which the vehicle is proceeding.

/00

ADR 7—Hydraulic Brake Hoses

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the performance requirements of hydraulic brake hoses in vehicles so that the risk of failure in service will be minimised.

/00—This standard ceased to have effect for new vehicles as from 9 December 2003, the requirements have been incorporated in ADR 42/.

ADR 8—Safety Glazing Material

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the performance requirements of material used for external or internal glazing in motor vehicles which will ensure adequate visibility under normal operating conditions, will minimise obscuration when shattered, and will minimise the likelihood of serious injury if a person comes in contact with the broken glazing material.

/00 /01

ADR 9

Not used.

ADR 10—Steering Column

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to minimise crushing or penetrating injuries to drivers due to the ‘Steering Column' as a result of frontal impact.

/00 /01 /02

ADR 11—Internal Sun Visors

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for internal ‘Sun Visors' to reduce the injury potential of internal ‘Sun Visors' and the adjacent vehicle structure.

/00

ADR 12—Glare Reduction in Field of View

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to minimise the glare from certain surfaces in the view of the driver.

/00—This standard ceased to have effect for new vehicles as from 9 December 2003.

ADR 13—Installation of Lighting and Light-signalling Devices on other than L-Group Vehicles

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for the number and mode of installation of lighting and light-signalling devices on motor vehicles other than L-group vehicles.

/00

ADR 14—Rear Vision Mirrors

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for rear vision mirrors to provide the driver with a clear and reasonably unobstructed view to the rear.

/00 /01 /02

ADR 15—Demisting of Windscreen

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for standards for equipment to maintain the windscreen clear of ‘Mist' so that driver's ‘Forward' vision is not obscured.

/00 /01—This standard ceased to have effect for new vehicles as from 9 December 2003.

ADR 16—Windscreen Wipers and Washers

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for windscreen wipers and washers to ensure reasonable visibility through the windscreen in inclement weather.

/00 /01—This standard ceased to have effect for new vehicles as from 9 December 2003, the requirements have been incorporated in ADR 42/.

ADR 17—Fuel System

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for ‘Fuel Systems 17/00' using ‘Liquid Fuel 17/00' other than liquefied petroleum gas that will facilitate safe operation and reduce the risk of fire due to fuel spillage during filling operations or as a result of impacts.

/00—This standard ceased to have effect for new vehicles as from 2 August 2005.

ADR 18—Instrumentation

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for the provision of speedometers.

/00 /01 /02 /03

ADR 19—Installation of Lighting & Light-signalling Devices on L-Group Vehicles

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for the number and mode of installation of lighting and light-signalling devices on L-group vehicles.

/00 /01 /02

ADR 20—Safety Rims

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify wheel ‘Rims' that will retain a deflated tyre in the event of a rapid loss of inflation pressure.

/00—This standard ceased to have effect for new vehicles as from 9 December 2003.

ADR 21—Instrument Panel

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for the instrument panel to reduce its injury potential to occupants on impact

/00

ADR 22—Head Restraints

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for the design of ‘Head Restraints' so as to limit the severity of injury in the event of rear-end impacts and to ensure that the ‘Head Restraint' cannot be adjusted too low.

/00

ADR 23—Passenger Car Tyres

The function of this vehicle standard is to specify requirements for new pneumatic tyres for motor vehicles and trailers.

/00 /01 /02

ADR 24—Tyre & Rim Selection

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for tyres and ‘Rims' appropriate to vehicle load capacity, ‘Rim' size and speed characteristics.

/00 /01 /02—This standard ceased to have effect for new vehicles as from 9 December 2003, the requirements have been incorporated in ADR 42/.

ADR 25—Anti-Theft Lock

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for a lock to inhibit unauthorised use of the vehicle and to minimise the possibility of inadvertent adjustment of steering locks to the anti-theft position when the vehicle is in motion.

/00 /01 /02

ADR 26

Not used

ADR 27

Not used

ADR 28—External Noise of Motor Vehicles

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to define limits on external noise generated by motor vehicles in order to limit the contribution of motor traffic to community noise

/00—This standard ceased to have effect for new vehicles as from 1 October 2006.

/01—This standard has been superseded by ADR 83/ for new vehicles as from 1 October 2006.

ADR 29—Side Door Strength

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify strength and stiffness requirements for side doors of passenger cars which can be used for occupant access to reduce intrusion into the passenger compartment as a result of side impact.

/00

ADR 30—Smoke Emission Control for Diesel Vehicles

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the smoke emission requirements for diesel fuelled vehicles in order to reduce air pollution.

/00—This standard ceased to have effect for new vehicles as from 1 October 2006.

/01

ADR 31—Brake Systems for Passenger Cars

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify braking system requirements for passenger cars.

/00—This standard ceased to have effect for new vehicles as from 29 September 2006.

/01 /02 /03

ADR 32

Not used

ADR 33—Brake Systems for Motorcycles and Mopeds

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to ensure safe braking under normal and emergency conditions for motorcycles and mopeds.

/00

ADR 34—Child Restraint Anchorages and Child Restraint Anchor fittings

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for ‘Child Restraint Anchorages' and ‘Child Restraint Anchor Fittings' which provide for the connection of standard ‘Attaching Clips' so that ‘Child Restraints' may be adequately secured to the vehicle. It specifies a standard package of fitting hardware and accessibility requirements to facilitate correct installation and interchangeability of ‘Child Restraints'

/00 /01 /02

ADR 35—Commercial Vehicle Brake Systems

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify braking requirements on commercial motor vehicles and large passenger vehicles to ensure safe braking under normal and emergency conditions.

/00 /01 /02 /03 /04 /05

ADR 36—Exhaust Emission Control for Heavy Duty Vehicles

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to limit ‘Exhaust Emissions' from the propulsion engine of heavy duty motor vehicles in order to reduce air pollution.

/00—This standard has been superseded by ADR 80/ for new vehicles as from 1 October 2006.

ADR 37—Emission Control for Light Vehicles

The intention of this Australian Design Rule is to limit ‘Fuel Evaporative Emissions' and 'Exhaust Emissions' from motor vehicles in order to reduce air pollution, and to require new petrol fuelled motor vehicles to be manufactured to operate on 'Unleaded Petrol'.

/00—This standard has been superseded by ADR 79/ for new vehicles as from 1 October 2006.

ADR 38—Trailer Brake Systems

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for braking under both normal and emergency conditions. Compliance can be demonstrated by road testing and/or calculations based on data for ‘Approved' components.

/00 /01 /02 /03 /04

ADR 39—External Noise of Motor Cycles

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements relating to external noise emitted from ‘Motor Cycles' in order to limit the contribution by these vehicles to community noise.

/00—This standard has been superseded by ADR 83/ for new vehicles as from 1 October 2006.

ADR 40

Not used

ADR 41—Mandatory Operation on Unleaded Petrol

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to require vehicles to be manufactured to operate on ‘Unleaded petrol' and have certain associated features.

/00—This standard ceased to have effect for new vehicles as from 13 February 2001.

ADR 42—General Safety Requirements

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify design and construction requirements to ensure safe operation of vehicles.

/00 /01 /02 /03 /04

ADR 43—Vehicle Configuration & Dimensions

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for vehicle configuration and dimensions.

/00 /01 /02 /03 /04

ADR 44—Specific Purpose Vehicle Requirements

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for the construction of the following vehicles:

‘Taxis'; ‘Tow Trucks'; ‘Pole-type Trailers'; LPG-fuelled Vehicles; Emergency Vehicles; and Motorhomes/‘Caravans'. The requirements of ADR 44 are related to specific requirements of the particular vehicles.

/00 /01 /02

ADR 45—Lighting & Light-signalling Devices not covered by ECE Regulations

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the photometric requirements for lighting and light-signalling devices which will ensure adequate illumination for the driver of the vehicle and signal to other road users the position, orientation, intention and movement of the vehicle, without producing undue glare for other road users.

/00 /01

ADR 46—Headlamps

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the photometric requirements for headlamps which will provide adequate illumination for the driver of the vehicle without producing undue glare for other road users.

/00

ADR 47—Retroreflectors

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the dimensions, photometric and stability requirements for retro-reflecting devices which when mounted on a vehicle will ensure that they effectively warn of the presence of the vehicle.

/00

ADR 48—Devices for Illumination of Rear Registration Plates

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the photometric requirements for devices which illuminate the rear registration plate by reflection.

/00

ADR 49—Front and Rear Position (Side) Lamps, Stop Lamps and End-outline Marker Lamps

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the photometric requirements for light-signalling devices which will indicate the presence, width and position of the vehicle when viewed from the front and from the rear.

/00

ADR 50—Front Fog Lamps

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the photometric requirements for front fog lamps..

/00

ADR 51—Filament Lamps

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the dimensional and photometric requirements for filament lamps which ensure interchangeability and correct functioning when installed in a lamp unit.

/00

ADR 52—Rear Fog Lamps

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the photometric requirements for rear fog lamps which are used to make the vehicle more easily visible from the rear by emitting a red signal of greater intensity than the rear position (side) lamps.

/00

ADR 53—Front and Rear Position Lamps, Stop Lamps, Direction Indicators & Rear Registration Plate Lamps for L-Group Vehicles

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the photometric requirements for front position lamps, rear position lamps, stop lamps, direction indicators and rear registration plate illuminating devices intended to be fitted to mopeds, motor cycles and vehicles treated as such.

/00

ADR 54—Headlamps for Mopeds

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the photometric requirements for headlamps using filament lamps producing one single passing beam for mopeds.

/00

ADR 55—Headlamps for Motor Cycles

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the photometric requirements for headlamps which are provided for motor cycles and other L-group vehicles.

/00

ADR 56—Moped Noise

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify limits on external noise emitted from mopeds in order to limit the contribution by these vehicles to community noise.

/00—This standard has been superseded by ADR 83/ for new vehicles as from 1 October 2006.

ADR 57—Special Requirements for L-Group Vehicles

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify special requirements for the construction of L Group Vehicles.

/00

ADR 58—Requirements for Omnibuses Designed for Hire and Reward

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for the construction of omnibuses designed for, and intended for licensing for, hire and reward.

/00

ADR 59—Standards for Omnibus Rollover Strength

The function of this vehicle standard is to ensure that omnibus superstructures withstand forces encountered in rollover crashes so as to maintain a residual space during and after a rollover crash.

/00

ADR 60—Centre High Mounted Stop Lamp

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for a supplementary ‘Centre High-mounted Stop Lamp' on the rear of the vehicle, to provide an additional indication to other road users to the rear of the vehicle that the driver of the vehicle is applying the service brakes.

/00

ADR 61—Vehicle Marking

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for vehicle marking.

/00 /01 /02

ADR 62—Mechanical Connections between Vehicles

The function of this vehicle standard is to specify requirements for devices for mechanical connections between vehicles and their fitment, in order to ensure positive mechanical engagement for vehicle combinations and to prohibit the opening or disengaging of devices under the action of any forces to which they may be subject to during normal use.

/00 /01 /02

ADR 63—Trailers Designed for Use in Road Trains

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify additional requirements for trailers designed for use in ‘Road Trains' having a ‘Gross Combination Mass' not exceeding 125 tonnes.

/00

ADR 64—Heavy Goods Vehicles Designed for Use in Road Trains & B-Doubles

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify additional design and construction requirements for hauling vehicles designed to be used in ‘Road Train' and ‘B-Doubles'.

/00

ADR 65—Maximum Road Speed Limiting for Heavy Goods Vehicles and Heavy Omnibuses

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify devices or systems used to limit the maximum road speed of heavy goods vehicles and heavy omnibuses.

/00

ADR 66—Seat Strength, Seat Anchorage Strength and Padding in Omnibuses

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for the strength of ‘Seats', seat-anchorages and seatbelt ‘Anchorages' of certain omnibuses; and for protecting occupants from accessories on the ‘Seats' and the armrests.

The standard includes requirements for both the ‘Seats' themselves and for vehicles fitted with ‘Seats'.

/00—This standard has been superseded by ADR 68/ for new MD3 & MD 4 vehicles as from 1 July 1995 and new ME vehicles as from 1 July 1994.

ADR 67—Installation of Lighting and Light-Signalling Devices on Three-Wheeled Vehicles

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to ensure that the installation of the lighting and light-signalling devices on the vehicle is such that the effective operation of these devices is not impaired.

/00

ADR 68—Occupant Protection in Buses

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify, for certain omnibuses, requirements for seatbelts, the strength of ‘Seats', seat-anchorages, seatbelt ‘Anchorages' and ‘Child Restraint Anchorages', and provisions for protecting occupants from impact with ‘Seat' backs and accessories on ‘Seats' and armrests.

/00

ADR 69—Full Frontal Impact Occupant Protection

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify vehicle crashworthiness requirements in terms of forces and accelerations measured on anthropomorphic dummies in outboard front seating positions in full frontal test crashes so as to minimise the likelihood of injury to occupants of those seating positions.

/00

ADR 70—Exhaust Emission Control for Diesel Engined Vehicles

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to reduce air pollution, by limiting the hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide, oxides of nitrogen, and particulates emitted to the atmosphere from the exhaust system of motor vehicles fitted with a ‘Diesel Engine'. This ADR is additional to ADR 30/00 which limits exhaust smoke emissions from such vehicles.

/00—This standard has been superseded by ADR 79/ for new light vehicles and ADR 80/ for new heavy vehicles as from 1 October 2006.

ADR 71—Temporary Use Spare Tyres

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify requirements for Temporary-Use Spare Tyre/Wheel Assemblies.

/00—This standard ceased to have effect for new vehicles as from 9 December 2003.

ADR 72—Dynamic Side Impact Occupant Protection

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify crash worthiness requirements in terms of forces and accelerations measured by anthropomorphic dummies so as to minimise the likelihood of injury to the occupants in side impact.

/00

ADR 73—Offset Frontal Impact Occupant Protection

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify crash worthiness requirements in terms of forces and accelerations measured by anthropomorphic dummies so as to minimise the likelihood of injury to the occupants in offset frontal impacts.

/00

ADR 74—Side Marker Lamps

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to prescribe the photometric requirements of side marker lamps which are used to increase the visibility of the sides of road vehicles.

/00

ADR 75—Headlamp Cleaners

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to prescribe requirements for the installation and testing of headlamp cleaners, if these are fitted to vehicles.

/00

ADR 76—Daytime Running Lamps

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to prescribe photometric requirements to daytime running lamps which are provided to improve the conspicuity of vehicles in daylight.

/00

ADR 77—Gas Discharge Headlamps

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to prescribe photometric requirements for motor vehicle headlamps equipped with gasdischarge light sources.

/00

ADR 78—Gas Discharge Light Sources

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to specify the dimensional, electrical and photometric requirements for gas-discharge light sources which ensure interchangeability and correct functioning when installed in a gasdischarge headlamp.

/00

ADR 79—Emission Control for Light Vehicles

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to prescribe exhaust and evaporative emission requirements for light vehicles in order to reduce air pollution.

/00 /01 /02 /03 /04

ADR 80—Emission Control for Heavy Vehicles

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to prescribe exhaust emission requirements for heavy vehicles in order to reduce air pollution.

/00 /01 /02 /03

ADR 81—Fuel Consumption Labelling for Light Vehicles

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to prescribe the requirements for the measurement of vehicle fuel consumption and carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, and the design and application of fuel consumption labels to vehicles.

/00 This standard ceased to have effect for new vehicles as from 1 July 2003.

/01 /02

ADR 82—Engine Immobilisers

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to prescribe requirements for engine immobilising devices which are intended to be fitted to vehicles so as to prevent vehicles from being driven away powered by its own engines.

/00

ADR 83—External Noise

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to define limits on external noise generated by motor vehicles, motor cycles and mopeds in order to limit the contribution of motor traffic to community noise.

/00

ADR 84—Front Underrun Impact Protection

The function of this Australian Design Rule is to prescribe requirements for minimise the likelihood of vehicles underrunning in frontal impacts.

/00

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Last Updated: 11 March, 2014