Modify a light vehicle

Find out what modifications you can undertake to a light vehicle in Western Australia without approval from the Department, and what to do when approval is required.

  Getting started, do you need approval?

Related material: Modify a heavy vehicle

Before making any modifications, you should check whether our approval is required. Generally no modification may be carried out if it:

  • Causes a nuisance or danger to other people.
  • Reduces the controllability of the vehicle.
  • Reduces the strength of the vehicle body.
  • Reduces the safety of the vehicle.

Modifications that don't require approval

Many minor vehicle modifications can be carried out without specific approval, as long as they comply with the applicable legislation.

Modifications that do not require approval include:

  • Additional lighting.
  • Air conditioners.
  • Air shock absorbers.
  • Alarm systems.
  • Badge bars.
  • Body markings and speed striping.
  • Gearbox (pre 1976).
  • Mesh stone shields for wind screens and lamps.
  • Mud spats and pebble guards.
  • Optional manufacturer seating.
  • Radio and stereo systems.
  • Rear-view mirrors.
  • Roof racks.
  • Seat belts for pre 1969 cars (no full harness types).
  • Single tone air horns.
  • Stabiliser bars.
  • Sun visors.
  • Torque rods and traction bars (not semi-tramp types).
  • Tyre size and aspect ratio.
  • Venetian blinds and other internal screening systems are allowed, subject to a clear view to the rear.

What to do if your proposed modification is not on the list

A list of modifications that require approval, and how to apply for their approval, is provided below.

If what you want to do is not on this list, or you are unsure, contact us. By contacting us first, you will ensure that:

  • The modified vehicle will be safe.
  • The vehicle's insurance remains valid
  • You avoid the inconvenience and expense of removing a vehicle compliance notice (yellow sticker)
  • You don't waste time and money on a project that subsequently proves to be illegal

Please note, if you modify your vehicle without the necessary approval you may be issued with a compliance notice (yellow sticker) and void your vehicle insurance.

LBU_VL_FAQ_VehicleLicensingSafety.pdf icon Kb

  Modifications requiring approval (limitations and conditions)

For information on the following modifications please refer to the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development Vehicle Standards Bulletin: National Code of Practice for Light Vehicle Construction and Modification (VSB14):

  • Alternative power.
  • Body modifications.
  • Brakes*.
  • Electric drive.
  • Engines.
  • Fuel systems.
  • Motorcycles.
  • Seating and occupant protection.
  • Suspension and steering.
  • Test procedures.
  • Transmissions.
  • Trike guidelines.

*Note:

Modifications to the braking system of a motor vehicle are permissible only where listed by the vehicle manufacturer as an option for the particular model. However, the fitting of a suitable power booster unit to a brake system is in order where it is an option listed by the vehicle manufacturer or is recommended by a qualified brake specialist.

Passenger vehicles and their derivatives manufactured to comply with ADR 31 - Hydraulic Braking Systems, and ADR 35 - Commercial Vehicle Braking Systems, must not be modified without prior written approval from the department.

Seat belt replacement and repairs

Please refer to the documents below.

Bull bars

Please refer to the document below.

LBU_VS_CI_112.pdf icon Kb
LBU_VS_CI_109.pdf icon Kb
LBU_VS_IB_110.pdf icon Kb
LBU_VS_IB_113.pdf icon Kb
LBU_F_VL_SD_E7_SelfBuiltVehicle.pdf icon Kb
External Link Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development: Australian Design Rules
External Link Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development: Vehicle Standards Bulletins (VSB)

  Step 1: Complete a modification application form

Before you can commence any vehicle modifications that require approval you must complete a Modification application - light (production) vehicles (Form) (see below). We will assess your application and advise you whether you have been granted approval in principle to proceed.

Applicants should endeavour to supply all details required at the time of submission. We may request additional information, such as test reports on certain applications.

Insufficient submissions, insufficient details, and poor drawings and documentation will delay the processing of your submissions.

LBU_F_VL_E36_ChangeVehicleDetails.pdf icon Kb
LBU_F_VS_ModificationLightVehicles.pdf icon Kb

  Metropolitan vehicle examination fees (2016/2017)

DoT vehicle examinations must be pre-booked and pre-paid.

  • To make a booking for a vehicle inspection at the DoT Welshpool Vehicle Inspection Centre please call 1300 782 713 between am and pm weekdays.
  • Privately operated Approved Inspection Station arrangements vary, please refer to individual booking procedures below.

Book at an Approved Inspection Station

  • You will need to book and pay for the examination fee directly with your chosen provider.
  • Approved Inspection Station telephone numbers and hours of operation vary; please check with the individual provider.
  • Pre-payment is not usually required at an Approved Inspection Station.

Please note:

Goods and Services Tax (GST) was removed for vehicle examination fees from 5 October 2013.

Opens in a new window Department of Regional Development

Perth - Vehicle examination fees

Fee type Fee
Light vehicles (MRC 4,500 kg or less)  
Any other light vehicle: Initial examination fee $94.85
Any other light vehicle: Re-examination fee $65.30
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Initial examination fee $65.30
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Re-examination fee $51.00
Heavy vehicles (MRC over 4,500 kg)  
Initial examination fee $150.80
Re-examination fee $99.90
Minor examination fee (verification of vehicle details only) includes engine change $65.30

Perth - General vehicle examination fees

Fee type Fee
Engine change $65.30
Minor examination fee (verification of vehicle details only) $65.30
FINAL_LBU_P_Fees_201617_Complete.pdf icon Kb

  Regional vehicle examination fees, by location (2016/2017)

Authorised Inspection Station (AIS) vehicle examination fees are benchmarked against the Regional Price Index (RPI) rate applicable to their location.

The RPI, developed by the Department of Regional Development, is the most appropriate measure available for calculating the cost differentials between Perth and the regions.

For more information about the RPI, please visit the Department of Regional Development.

Please note:

Goods and Services Tax (GST) was removed for vehicle examination fees from 5 October 2013.

Opens in a new window Department of Regional Development

Gascoyne - Vehicle examination fees

Fee type Fee
Light vehicles (MRC 4,500 kg or less)  
Any other light vehicle: Initial examination fee $106.50
Any other light vehicle: Re-examination fee $73.30
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Initial examination fee $73.30
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Re-examination fee $57.25
Heavy vehicles (MRC over 4,500 kg)  
Initial examination fee $169.30
Re-examination fee $112.15
Minor examination fee (verification of vehicle details only) includes engine change $73.30

Goldfields/Esperance - Vehicle examination fees

Fee type Fee
Light vehicles (MRC 4,500 kg or less)  
Any other light vehicle: Initial examination fee $97.85
Any other light vehicle: Re-examination fee $67.35
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Initial examination fee $67.35
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Re-examination fee $52.60
Heavy vehicles (MRC over 4,500 kg)  
Initial examination fee $155.60
Re-examination fee $103.05
Minor examination fee (verification of vehicle details only) includes engine change $67.35

Great Southern - Vehicle examination fees

Fee type Fee
Light vehicles (MRC 4,500 kg or less)  
Any other light vehicle: Initial examination fee $94.85
Any other light vehicle: Re-examination fee $65.30
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Initial examination fee $65.30
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Re-examination fee $51.00
Heavy vehicles (MRC over 4,500 kg)  
Initial examination fee $150.80
Re-examination fee $99.90
Minor examination fee (verification of vehicle details only) includes engine change $65.30

Kimberley - Vehicle examination fees

Fee type Fee
Light vehicles (MRC 4,500 kg or less)  
Any other light vehicle: Initial examination fee $109.45
Any other light vehicle: Re-examination fee $75.35
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Initial examination fee $75.35
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Re-examination fee $58.85
Heavy vehicles (MRC over 4,500 kg)  
Initial examination fee $174.00
Re-examination fee $115.25
Minor examination fee (verification of vehicle details only) includes engine change $75.35

Midwest - Vehicle examination fees

Fee type Fee
Light vehicles (MRC 4,500 kg or less)  
Any other light vehicle: Initial examination fee $97.60
Any other light vehicle: Re-examination fee $67.15
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Initial examination fee $67.15
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Re-examination fee $52.45
Heavy vehicles (MRC over 4,500 kg)  
Initial examination fee $155.15
Re-examination fee $102.75
Minor examination fee (verification of vehicle details only) includes engine change $67.15

Peel - Vehicle examination fees

Fee type Fee
Light vehicles (MRC 4,500 kg or less)  
Any other light vehicle: Initial examination fee $94.85
Any other light vehicle: Re-examination fee $65.30
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Initial examination fee $65.30
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Re-examination fee $51.00
Heavy vehicles (MRC over 4,500 kg)  
Initial examination fee $150.80
Re-examination fee $99.90
Minor examination fee (verification of vehicle details only) includes engine change $65.30

Pilbara - Vehicle examination fees

Fee type Fee
Light vehicles (MRC 4,500 kg or less)  
Any other light vehicle: Initial examination fee $111.40
Any other light vehicle: Re-examination fee $76.70
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Initial examination fee $76.70
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Re-examination fee $59.90
Heavy vehicles (MRC over 4,500 kg)  
Initial examination fee $177.15
Re-examination fee $117.35
Minor examination fee (verification of vehicle details only) includes engine change $76.70

South West - Vehicle examination fees

Fee type Fee
Light vehicles (MRC 4,500 kg or less)  
Any other light vehicle: Initial examination fee $96.90
Any other light vehicle: Re-examination fee $66.70
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Initial examination fee $66.70
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Re-examination fee $52.10
Heavy vehicles (MRC over 4,500 kg)  
Initial examination fee $154.10
Re-examination fee $102.05
Minor examination fee (verification of vehicle details only) includes engine change $66.70

Wheatbelt - Vehicle examination fees

Fee type Fee
Light vehicles (MRC 4,500 kg or less)  
Any other light vehicle: Initial examination fee $97.00
Any other light vehicle: Re-examination fee $66.80
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Initial examination fee $66.80
Caravan and trailer (without brakes), motorcycle, motor carrier: Re-examination fee $52.15
Heavy vehicles (MRC over 4,500 kg)  
Initial examination fee $154.25
Re-examination fee $102.15
Minor examination fee (verification of vehicle details only) includes engine change $66.80
FINAL_LBU_P_Fees_201617_Complete.pdf icon Kb

  Temporary movement permit and modification fees (2016/2017)

Vehicle permit and modification fees

Fee type Fee
Temporary movement permits (all class except Class 6) $29.05 ^
Temporary movement permits (Class 6) $24.20 ^
Modification permit $19.50

^ includes Motor Injury Insurance (MII), Vehicle Licence Duty and GST.

 

Buy a temporary movement permit

  Step 2: Have your modification application processed

Your application will be processed by the Department as soon as possible. However, you should allow a reasonable time for processing.

  Step 3: Undertake modifications and vehicle examination

Once your modifications have been finalised, you will need to undertake a vehicle examination. Please note a fee is payable.

See also: Information on noise levels and emissions testing.

  Step 4: Issue with a modification permit or another form of approval

If you vehicle passes the examination and you have paid the required fee, we will issue a modification permit or provide another form of approval guaranteeing that the modification conforms to the regulations.

We recommend you keep these documents inside the vehicle, with copies in a safe place. These documents are proof that the vehicle is safe when used as the conditions on the permit dictate. When your vehicle is sold they must be given to the new owner.

It is also recommended that you discuss any modifications you have carried out or intend to make with your insurer, including those listed as modifications not requiring approval. Failure to do this could result in a subsequent insurance claim being denied.

  Engineering or modification reports and certificates

Engineering and recognised signatories

The document below provides a list of persons who are recognised by the Department as able to issue engineering or modification reports or certificates for vehicles modified by themselves or under their personal supervision.

LBU_VS_IB_102.pdf icon Kb

  Applicable legislation (modify a light vehicle)

Whatever the reason for a modification, the vehicle in question must conform to the following regulations and rules.

  • Australian Design Rules.
  • Road Traffic (Vehicles) Act 2012.

Many minor vehicle modifications can be carried out without our approval. However, they must still comply with the relevant regulations.

External Link Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development: Australian Design Rules
Opens in a new window State Law Publisher: Road Traffic (Vehicles) Act 2012

 

Page last updated: Mon Sep 19 2016 12:49:17 PM