Jack Sandher - Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Importing European Cars 

to Australia in 6 Steps

Anyone who is thinking about importing a European car to Australia should do their research so they know exactly what’s needed to complete the task. Moving a large object like a vehicle overseas requires some effort. Even though you’re not physically moving the car yourself, you still must make sure all the necessary paperwork is prepared and filed with approvals or you could wind up with an expensive mess on your hands. The following steps will help you learn more about the Australian import process. 

Step 1: Familiarise Yourself with the Costs and Eligibility Requirements

Before filing anything, make sure you have done your preliminary homework. The vehicle must be eligible for entry into Australia. You should also learn more about all costs, including shipping, delivery, storage, taxes, permit application fees, customs duties, quarantine cleaning costs, etc. 

Step 2: Obtain a Vehicle Import Approval

Next you must apply for a Vehicle Import Approval. The Australian government provides an online form or you can print a form and send it by mail. Make sure all information you submit is accurate before completing the form. You will receive a hard copy of your approval by mail. Make sure you look this over because there may be conditions that must be met to legally bring your European car into the country.

Step 3: Arrange Shipping for Your Vehicle

Now you are safe to find a shipping service. Remember to prep your car beforehand. This will include steam cleaning on the inside and outside as well as removal of anything that could be considered a quarantine risk. Air conditioning gas must also be removed prior to shipping.

Step 4: Obtain Clearance from Customs

You must lodge an import declaration and obtain clearance from customs. This will involve payment of a customs duty as well as a goods and services tax. Depending on the type of vehicle you are importing, you may also be subject to a luxury car tax.

Step 5: Meet All Conditions to Complete the Car Import

All conditions and requirements must be met to complete the import. That means lodging a quarantine entry with the Australian Quarantine and Inspection service. You or a broker working on your behalf may have to be present during the inspection. Modification work may be necessary as well. You will also have to apply for an identification plate. 

Step 6: Register Your European Car in Australia

The last step is to register your vehicle. This can be done in your Australian state or territory.  The government website provides a list of addresses and URLs associated with each region so you know where to go.