FEDERAL GOVERNMENT OPENS THE DOOR TO EXOTIC CAR IMPORTS

REVIEWS

CLASSIC NEWS / REVIEWS / CLUB NEWS / AUCTION ACTION / GOTAWAYS

fuel GET YOU FIRED UP

WHILE AUSTRALIAN

Border Force continues its vigilant 'asbestos in vehicles' enforcement, thus undermining the enthusiast and specialist car importing industry, another department has introduced new laws to make importing a car easier.

The Federal Government has passed the Road Vehicle Standards Bill replacing the Motor Vehicle Standards Act of 1989. The only hurdle remaining is for the bill to be passed and become an ‘Act’.

The current Act limits the vehicles that are allowed as private imports, however Road Vehicle Standards proposes changes that opens the door to rare and exotic vehicles to be complied with Australian Design Rules and registered without the need for conversion to right hand drive.

The new '25-year rule’ allows classic vehicles more than 25 years old to be imported.

The Australian Imported Motor Vehicle Industry Association hailed the decision for the greater choices it offers buyers and importers.

Models that haven’t been sold in Australia will be eligible, granting buyers access to vehicles that have never been seen on Australian roads.

The proposal sees new models having to meet one of six Specialist and Enthusiast Vehicle Scheme (SEVS) criteria rather than the previous twoout-of-four.

These criteria are as follows:

1. Power-to-weight of more than 110kW/tonne if built in 1992 (or over an extra 1kW/ tonne for each year following)

2. Drivetrain based on an alternate power source to internal combustion or it is in a micro-car subcategory for low power (low emissions) vehicles.

3. Originally manufactured or factory-fitted with substantive specialist mobility features to assist people with disabilities

4. Total production less than 3000 units per year and for the model, less than 1000 units and any variants less than 100 per year. Left–hand drive vehicles won’t require conversion under the rarity criterion but will need state or territory agreement for use on their roads.

5. Vehicles originally manufactured as left-hand drive and not offered in righthand-drive form – these will require conversion.

6. Vehicle originally built as a caravan or motorhome.

The Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI) also praised the decision after raising parallel import concerns that would have allowed individuals to bypass dealers and the ‘official’ importation process.

“We welcome the passage of the Road Vehicle Standards Bill and congratulate both the Government and the Opposition for their bipartisanship on this very important piece of legislation,” says FCAI chief Tony Weber.

“The new motor vehicle industry plays an important role in the lives of everyday Australians, with vehicles remaining one of the most significant household and business purchases.

“The new Act will ensure that Australians have access to new vehicles with state-ofthe-art safety technology in a similar timeframe to the rest of the world.

“We will work with the government in the development of enabling rules to ensure that the Specialist and Enthusiast Vehicle Scheme (SEVs) meets its intent of providing unique vehicles without creating a ‘de-facto’ broad used import-vehicle scheme.”

SONNEN SPARKS UP OLD HOLDEN FACTORY

A LITTLE OVER a year after Holden’s manufacturing doors were slammed shut for the last time, German battery storage manufacturer Sonnen has recharged the former Holden Elizabeth (SA) plant with a new enterprise. It has commenced the manufacturing and assembly of its world-leading home battery technology at the former Holden site.

Following the release of the South Australian government’s battery incentive scheme, Sonnen is one of three new international companies set to manufacture and assemble battery storage systems in South Australia.

The state government is providing 40,000 households with $100 million in rebates, supported by another $100 million in low interest loans provided by the Clean Energy Finance Corporation aimed at lower income earners.

Sonnen aims to produce 50,000 batteries over the next five years year to meet demand from Australian households and for export to Asia Pacific region, It also plans to create 430 new manufacturing and installation jobs in South Australia as it ramps up production for the $100 million South Australia Home Battery Scheme.

Sonnen has already hired 50 employees in Adelaide to manage its production, call centre and technical support operations, and it has expanded its warehousing at Lionsgate Business Park.

“Today, we celebrate a new era for clean energy manufacturing in South Australia with the assembly of our first Sonnen Batteries at Elizabeth,” announced Sonnen CEO Christoph Ostermann.

According to Premier Steven Marshall, “Having Sonnen locate its manufacturing centre in Adelaide for the production of home batteries for Australia, Asia and the South Pacific is a significant step in the revitalisation of South Australia’s industrial base.”

SEEN SOMETHING?

Get your smartphones out and share what you've seen on our Facebook page. The best entries will end up right here.

RUN DMC

The things you see when you are out to dinner. I don't think it was Drew Barrymore's boyfriend from The Wedding Singer at the wheel, but this silver DeLorean turned heads when it cruised down Chapel Street one evening.

ALEX CORNE - WINDSOR, VIC

LASER CAMPER

Seeing this Laser on the Bruce Highway reminded me of the surprised reaction we got years ago when my wife and I and three kids climbed out of our '73 Beetle and began to unload the camping gear.

YOLANDA LOMAZ MOSSMAN, QLD

PEUGEOT GRAVE

I get pissed off when I see that someone likes a particular car enough to collect a few and then ends up just leaving them in the weather to rot. What's wrong with some people?

DON PANOPOULOS - ROSEBUD, VIC

ALFA CRUISER

When saw this Alfa on club plates in Melbourne I decided to put my MGB back on the road. I only retired it because the full rego was costing so much for a car I only drove a few times a year.

GWEN PANAZZO GLEBE, NSW