Pre-Shipment Checklist - Importing Cars To Australia

Before committing to purchasing or shipping your car, please ensure you have considered all of the below points. If you can’t provide one of these documents, then please contact us to discuss before committing to purchase your car. Some of these are pre-requests to importing, and without them you can’t import your car.


Import Permit / Compliance & Registration

You CAN NOT import a car without an import Permit.

Obtaining a Vehicle Import Approval is the single most important factor to consider before you ship your vehicle. The most common and easiest permit to obtain is under the Personal Import Option. read more

Taurus Logistics takes no responsibility for cars that are shipped without obtaining a permit. Our quotation does NOT include on-road costs such as vehicle compliance, Blue Slip or Registration.

Have you considered GST & Duty?

It depends on your criteria: for example, is this vehicle returning to Australia?

If the vehicle is returning to Australia then you need to provide proof of previous Australian Registration to exempt you from paying GST/Duties, otherwise GST/Duties are payable on all imports.

The rate payable to the Australian Customs Service at the Australian entry port are as follows:

  • Vehicles up to 30 years old including forward control vehicles: 5% Duty + 10% GST
  • 4WD “Off Road” vehicles and commercial vehicles: 5% Duty + 10% GST
  • Vehicles over 30 years old and motorcycles: 0% Duty + 10% GST

Duties are levied on the ‘Customs Value’ only whereas GST is levied on the ‘Customs Value’ + the Duty + the total cost of shipment to Australia figure.

Luxury Car Tax (LCT) - is an additional tax levied at a rate of 33% on all vehicles (except motorcycles and some commercial vehicles) with a current GST inclusive value in excess of AU$67,525, or AU$75,526 for fuel efficient vehicles. LCT is only payable on the amount in excess of the GST inclusive 'break point'.

 Calculate your Duty, GST and LCT, with our handy Import GST / Duty / LCT calculator.

Quarantine requirements

You should aim to have your car in the cleanest possible condition. Best practice is to have the car thoroughly steam cleaned and vacuumed prior to shipment. There is no need to get it "detailed" but the goal is to remove all dirt and contamination inside and out. We can offer this as an additional service in some locations.

All used vehicles are inspected by Quarantine on arrival, and only after this inspection is the cleanliness condition known. Due to this we can’t quote the cleaning costs. But please allow AU$100-200 as an estimated to cover potential cleaning / vacuuming. Actual charge will be determined after inspection.

We recommend you downloading the MPI cleaning guide. Although this is published by MPI it is still a useful guide for importing cars to Australia.
Download Cleaning Guide

Car preparation

Your car must be in good running condition, and fully operational to be shipped RORO. Otherwise containerisation is the only option.

  • Vehicles leaking oil, water or petrol will not be loaded.
  • Fuel tanks must not be more than 25% full but not less than 10% empty. Fuel gauge must be working.
  • Vehicles which are not running (dead vehicles) will incur additional charges.
  • Vehicles (Leaving New Zealand ONLY) must have a current Warrant of Fitness (WOF)
  • Before export de-registered and remove your plates from the vehicle.
  • Remove ALL personal items from your car.
    • When shipping on a RORO vessel, personal items must not be left in the vehicle or your vehicle may not be accepted on-board the vessel.
    • There is the option to load your car into a container which would allow you to also ship some personal belongings, but this is normally a more expensive option than RORO. Please contact us for a quotation.


Have you taken out Marine Insurance?

Not compulsory, but worth asking us for a quote. Your road insurance will not cover any damage that may occur while in transit. Taurus Logistics can arrange marine insurance on your behalf on ALL vehicles for 1% of the insured value, with a minimum premium of NZD250.00. Find out why you need Marine Insurance.

 Marine Insurance is not included unless itemised on the quotation. Don't take the risk and get a Marine Insurance Quote online. Takes less than 30 seconds.
Marine Insurance Quote

Documentation Required

  • Bill of Sale
    • If purchasing the car, we will need a copy of the Bill Of Sale (commercial invoice / Purchase Invoice) from the seller. If you already own the car, then we need a copy of the original purchase Bill of Sale.
    • If this has been misplaced, then it will need to have a valuation done on arrival.
    • We must present to Australian Customs either the Original Purchase Price for the vehicle or a current Australian Valuation, we will use whichever works out to be the lowest value therefore reducing the amount of GST payable by you. If you would like us to do a valuation on your vehicle the cost for this is apox NZ$335.00. Please let us know when making a booking.
  • Registration / Ownership papers
    • We will need a copy of the registration papers showing ownership.
    • Depending on the country of purchase (i.e. USA) the original ownership / Title papers are needed to export the origin country.
    • Do not have these sent to you, or altered, until our agent instructs the seller.
  • Photo ID
    • A high quality colour scan copy of the photo page from your passport, or your Australian Drivers Licence.


If you have ticked off all the above, then your car is ready to ship to Australia. Congratulations!

Taurus Logistics Ltd (Australia)
Level 1, 1 Queens Rd,
Melbourne, VIC 3004, Australia
ABN: 38 168 814 245
+61 3 8657 5563

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