Importing and registering a vehicle from overseas

If you are importing a vehicle from overseas make sure you have the necessary approval before registering the vehicle.

Apply for a vehicle import approval

A vehicle import approval must be obtained before importing a vehicle into Australia.

Importing vehicles into Australia -  Australian Government Department for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications.

Vehicles imported before 1989

Right-hand drive

If you have an imported vehicle that is pre-1989 and that is right-hand drive please read the following document.

MR 628 Requirements for imported passenger vehicles manufactured prior to January 1989 (322.2 KB PDF)

Left-hand drive and 30 years or older

If you have an imported vehicle that is left-hand drive and is 30 years and older please read the following document.

MR 629 left-hand drive vehicles (348.5 KB PDF)

Left hand drive single trip exemption

Left-hand drive and less than 30 years

Left-hand drive vehicles that are younger than 30 years old will only be eligible for registration in South Australia once the vehicle has been converted to right-hand drive and subsequently had a roadworthiness inspection.

For more information on converting your vehicle to right-hand drive please lodge an Application to modify a light motor vehicle with the Vehicle Standards section of DIT.

Personally imported vehicles

If you have been granted personal import approval papers from the Australian Government Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development please complete an online application for the exemption from the fitting of a compliance plate .

Register an imported vehicle

A vehicle previously registered overseas must satisfy the following requirements for registration in South Australia:

  • an Import Approval Letter provided by the Australian Government Department for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications
  • an identity inspection is required to ensure the vehicle is not stolen
  • a roadworthy inspection and paperwork are required to ensure the vehicle complies with Australian Design Rules.

After the vehicle has been inspected you can apply to register the vehicle at a Service SA customer service centre by providing:

Contact Vehicle Standards



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Page last updated 26 September 2022

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