Vehicle types and specifications

Special purpose vehicles

Special purpose vehicles that don't meet the safety standards set by the Australian Design Rules or the South Australian Road Traffic Act can be registered under certain conditions.

What is a special purpose vehicle?

Vehicles that have not been designed and built for carrying a load or passengers on roads, such as:

  • tractors
  • fork-lifts
  • mowers
  • sweepers
  • mobile-cranes
  • industrial vehicles
  • farm machines
  • earth moving vehicles.

Heavy special purpose vehicles (unladen mass exceeding 4500kg) fall into one of three categories.

Type P - Plant based

Built or permanently modified to operate off road or on road related areas, or on an area of road that is under construction or repair. Examples include forklifts, backhoes, bulldozers, excavators, front-end loaders, tractors, agricultural machines and graders.

Type T - Truck based

Built or permanently modified for use on roads with no axle or axle group that is loaded in excess of the statutory mass limits. This category includes vehicles that are constructed on a truck chassis, either by design or modification. Examples include truck mounted concrete pumps and truck mounted drilling rigs.

Type O - Overmass

A vehicle (other than a type P) built or permanently modified for use on roads that has at least one axle or axle group loaded in excess of the statutory mass limits.

How to register

1. Application

Complete an MR1A application for conditional registration and third party insurance form (105.9 KB PDF) .

If the vehicle's unladen mass is 2000kg or greater, or the gross vehicle mass exceeds 4500kg, you will also need to complete a MR80 vehicle supplementary details form (520.4 KB PDF).

Special purpose vehicles may be registered for any three-month period up to 36 months (for example 2 years and 3 months). Special purpose vehicles may also be registered with a common expiry subject to approval.

If you need to register a vehicle for only part of the year, you may apply for seasonal registration.

2. Lodgement

At any Service SA customer service centre.

Conditional registration assessment

An assessment will determine which (if any) operating conditions will be applied to the vehicle, which may include:

  • daylight travel only
  • restrictions on speed
  • restrictions on distance that may be travelled
  • carrying of warning signs.

The conditions will be applied to the vehicle in the form of a gazette notice, code of practice or exemption. Refer to Gazettes, codes of practice and operating conditions for further details.

Related information


Service SA customer service centre
Phone:131 084

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Page last updated 30 November 2016

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Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure
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