You pay duty when you register or transfer ownership of a vehicle, unless you are 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 (passenger or non-passenger), whether its value exceeds a certain threshold (luxury car tax threshold), whether the vehicle is new or used, and the date it is registered it with VicRoads.
Used vehicles will have been previously registered in Victoria or elsewhere. Motorcycles, utes, panel vans or vehicles seating more than eight adults, including the driver, are not considered passenger cars.
- 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.
Information for licensed motor car traders
If you are a licensed motor car trader, find out more about your responsibilities in relation to motor vehicle duty.
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, for example 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 circumstances, including transfers between spouses/domestic partners, and for vehicles used by 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 do this.