You Have or are Thinking of Importing a Vehicle?

Your vehicle entry certification is facilitated by Waikato Vehicle Compliance and the inspection is carried out by VTNZ under contract to, and in accordance with guidelines set by NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) at WVC premises.  

We strongly advise that if you are looking at  importing a vehicle from overseas that you check that it meets the criteria needed to comply to NZ regulations.  It is easy to be caught with a vehicle that can't be registered in NZ.


Firstly, you need to book the vehicle in. You can organise for the vehicle to arrive via transporter from the port, as they are unable to be driven on our roads until they are complied and registered, unless you have a dealership plate.  When it does come to us we will need it for a minimum of a full day, but sometimes it has to stay with us longer if any complications arise.

What do we need?

We need all the supporting original documentation, such as de-registration papers from the country you imported the vehicle from, proof of ownership linking back to the last registered owner, frontal impact and emissions standards plate or statement, fuel consumption certificate. Different countries require different paperwork so please check that you have the correct paperwork.  

We also need a form of photo ID (Drivers licence/Passport) of the person the vehicle is being registered to (we will take a photocopy of this).  This needs to be provided to us before the vehicle can be inspected.

Then what happens?

The inspection has two components, a physical and the paperwork.  All paperwork is checked for accuracy and authenticity, and the vehicle is stripped of the interior parts so the VTNZ Inspector to assess for any structural or rust damage or repair.  They also look for water damage. The vehicle is put up on a hoist, all wheels are removed and it is inspected. The inspector will also take the vehicle for a small test drive.   

If it passes?

If the inspector passes the vehicle, we reassemble the vehicle and it is issued with a Warrant of Fitness. We will contact you to advise you of this and arrange collection of the vehicle. When you come to collect the vehicle we will issue you with the paperwork to go to VTNZ and register the vehicle and be issued with new number plates. (This is an additional cost)
For all first time registrations this needs to be done by VTNZ in person. 

If the vehicle fails?

We will contact you to advise the vehicle has failed and why. We are happy to discuss this with you and can prepare an estimate for the cost of repairs for you. (There is a charge of $40 to do this for large repair jobs.)  If you are happy for us to carry out the repairs, we will do so and put it back through the recheck. If you take the vehicle away to do the repairs yourself  it needs to be re-booked for a recheck. You have 20 working days from the date of the inspection to carry out the repairs for it to comply.

If the inspector fails the vehicle on anything they deem to be structural damage, rust or water damage, or they find evidence of previous rust or structural repairs, they may require a repair cert to be carried out on the vehicle. This needs to be done by a Repair Certifier.  If it requires repairs these need to be carried out under the instruction of the repair certifier. The cost for the repair cert itself is $450, plus the cost of the repairs on top. 

Compliance Inspection Fees (all fees are GST inclusive):
All Import Compliance $480.00
VIN Assignment $100.00

VIN Attachment  $100.00 

If you are looking for further information, overall costs of importing a vehicle, there is a downloadable form here, from the New Zealand Transport Agency.  It is important to ensure that any vehicles you import are going to meet NZ standards.  We recommend you do your research prior to importing.

Need to Talk it through? The friendly team at Waikato Vehicle Compliance are happy to discuss getting your car compliant and back on the road!


Over 70 years worth of experience between our technicians and Certifiers. You can trust we can sort any job, on any vehicle. 


4e Wickham Street
Hamilton 3204

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