You pay duty when you register or transfer ownership of a vehicle, unless you're eligible for an exemption
Unless an exemption applies, you pay motor vehicle duty when you:
- Register a vehicle that has never been registered or is currently unregistered
- Transfer the registration of a vehicle
Motor vehicle duty is collected by VicRoads on our behalf.
How much do you pay?
It depends on the type of vehicle and its value. Currently, different duty rates apply, depending on whether the vehicle is new or used and then, if it is a passenger car.
The Victorian Budget 2017-18 includes a measure that new and used passenger cars will be subject to the same duty rates from 1 July 2017. This measure has to be approved by Parliament before it comes into effect and this is likely to happen in June 2017.
Used vehicles will have been previously registered in Victoria or elsewhere. Motorcycles, utes, panel vans or vehicles that seat more than eight adults (including the driver) are not considered passenger cars.
A higher duty rate applies to new passenger cars above the luxury car tax threshold.
- The price you paid for the vehicle, or
- The price for which it may be reasonably sold on the open market
Note: the value of the vehicle is rounded up to the nearest $200.
Buying a vehicle from a dealer
When you buy a roadworthy vehicle from a dealer, you pay them the duty and they lodge this payment and your registration application with VicRoads. Until payment is received, both you and the dealer are liable for duty.
Buying a vehicle privately
If you buy a registered vehicle privately, you must complete the registration transfer application and pay duty directly to VicRoads within 14 days of the purchase. Penalties apply if you do not lodge your application on time, or if you under-declare your vehicle's value.
If the vehicle is unregistered, you pay duty at the time you choose to lodge a registration application.
Other transfers of a vehicle
Where a vehicle is otherwise transferred to you (such as a gift from parent to child), and is garaged in Victoria, you must tell VicRoads and pay duty within 14 days of the transfer. Only in rare circumstances will a duty exemption apply.
Please visit VicRoads to find out how to register, renew or transfer a registration on your vehicle.
Set guidelines apply for dealers to calculate the duty on drive-away deals.
Exemptions and refunds
Exemptions, reductions and refunds of duty already paid are available depending on your circumstances. These include transfers between spouses/domestic partners, and for vehicles used for eligible veterans, the incapacitated, primary producers and people with disabilities.
Refunds for dealers
An application must be lodged with all supporting documents relevant to the circumstances of each refund or exemption/reduction to enable us to process your request.
Getting it right
Our priority is to help you pay the right amount of tax at the right time. Learn more about how we'll do this.