8 steps to importing a vehicle

This page gives a step-by-step overview of the process for importing a road vehicle into Australia. The process involves multiple government agencies. You should familiarise yourself with each agency’s requirements before importing a vehicle into Australia.

If you are unsure whether your vehicle is a road vehicle or not, visit the not a road vehicle page.

1. Conduct research

  • Is the vehicle eligible to enter Australia?
  • Which approval type should I apply for?
  • What costs are involved? (e.g. shipping, storage, delivery, approval application, taxes, Customs duties, cleaning for quarantine purposes, asbestos testing/removal, quarantine inspection costs, modification costs, State or Territory registration and insurance requirements, etc.)
  • What are the time frames involved for getting the approval and completing other necessary arrangements?
  • What documentation do I need?
  • What does each government agency require?
  • Do I need to use a broker?
  • Will I need to have modifications done to meet national road vehicle standards (Australian Design Rules)?
  • What risks are involved with importing a vehicle?

2. Apply for an approval to import a vehicle

  • Create an account in ROVER (if not already registered)
  • Complete the online application form
  • Pay the application fee

3. Receive approval to import a vehicle

  • Receive email with approval attached
  • Approval may contain conditions for use of the vehicle
  • Government agency: Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development, Communications and the Arts

4. Arrange shipping of a vehicle

  • Before shipping, ensure vehicle is steam cleaned inside and outside to remove any materials that may pose a quarantine risk
  • Before shipping, ensure any air-conditioning gas is removed, if necessary
  • Arrange for asbestos testing and removal, if necessary
  • Government Agencies: Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment, Water

5. Get Customs clearance

  • Lodge an import declaration
  • Pay Customs duty
  • Pay Goods & Services Tax (GST)
  • Pay Luxury Car Tax, if required
  • Ensure there is no asbestos
  • Government agency: Department of Home Affairs

6. Meet Australian quarantine requirements

7. Meet approval conditions

  • Arrange for modification of vehicle, if necessary
  • Conduct testing and develop evidence of compliance, if required
  • Apply for entry on the Register of Approval Vehicles (RAV), if necessary

8. Register the vehicle

  • Apply to register the vehicle in the relevant State or Territory (if you intend using the vehicle on a public road)