I thought it might be interesting/useful for anyone else considering bringing a classic over to Oz from NZ to get an insider’s view of how the process works. It isn’t especially complicated but there are a few items to check off your list and prepare for before you actually get to make things happen.
- Choose a Logistics company to handle the process.
This is a no brainer. You’re going to need a company to move the car, you might as well let them manage the paper work and the process. My choice was Taurus Logistics, as much because they were top of the list in Google and gave me a reasonable quote. To be fair I didn’t do massive amounts of diligent research and price comparisons as generally, I’m all about the expedience. I am however, interested in hearing from others who’ve done the same about their experiences… (have at it in the comments).
One of the reasons having a Logistics company or broker take care of the bulk of the details is that it reduces hassle. I mean, check out the length of the process here. Logistics takes care of most of that upon provision of the correct paperwork (and the money, of course).
- Gather up your paperwork.
There are a fair few requirements to meet before you import your classic. The first of which is Import approval from the AU government. First your vehicle has to be eligible… then you have to figure out under which option you’re importing your vehicle. I imported Lucie under the ‘Vehicles Manufactured Before 1989 Option’ – you can read more about that here and as such, details below are relevant only to that option.
- You need proof of ownership of the vehicle. Of all the pieces of paper I needed, this was the most painful one at regular intervals because I had a receipt for the deposit, but not for the full cost of the vehicle. The only proof I had was the transfer of payment from my bank. So, if you’re buying privately, get a receipt and make copies of it, get full contact details of the seller so you don’t go through some of the hassle I did actually proving I owned the car.
- You need Details about the car to help the department assess your vehicle. This list is from their site
- Details of the pre-1989 vehicle—such as the manufacturer’s specifications, brochures, diagrams and photographs of the vehicle.
- Registration papers where these are available (registration papers are an accurate source to verify the make, model and Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) or chassis number for the vehicle).
- The specification of the vehicle you are importing (especially the installed engine, transmission and overall dimensions).
- A recent photo of the vehicle (in its current condition).
- A detailed list of all modifications undertaken on the vehicle. Please see below for a comprehensive list of modifications for cars, motorbikes and trailers.
- If the vehicle has been subject to alterations, supporting documentation to establish the details of the alterations and the date(s) on which the work was completed.
- When you’ve got all the requisites above, register on the site and apply for an import license.
- Then get the ball rolling with your logistics company. They’ll need all of those details above, and your Import License but also may vary from company to company, so make sure you check out all their requirements before you hit the ‘Go’ button.
- Once you’ve got everything together, and you’ve paid the deposit and commited to bringing the car over, you need to get the car to the depot and let your handler/broker take care of the rest. Once you’re ready it’s actually pretty painless.
Notes about added costs : If your car is over 30 years old, you do not need to account for Import Duty on the car but you WILL have to account for GST at 10% of the value of the car.
You are also LIKELY to need to have the car cleaned under quarantine conditions either before it leaves NZ or before it arrives in AU so make sure you’ve set aside around $300.00 for that too (I did it in AU once she’d got here).