If you modify your vehicle, that can void your registration, and in some cases, you are legally obligated to get a new rego inspection after making a modification. Wondering if you need an inspection? Here's what to consider about modifications:
1. Minor modifications do not require approval or registration.
Although the laws vary from area to area, in most cases, if you make a minor modification to your vehicle, you do not have to apply for approval or obtain a new registration. The list of minor modifications includes relatively common and easy-to-do modifications that do not substantively change how the vehicle works. This include putting on a tow bar, adding a roof rack or installing a long range aerial. However, if you start to replace elements of the motor or add a lift kit, you likely should contact the rego inspections office in your area to see if you need to re-register.
2. Rally cars have specific rules governing their registration.
If you are modifying your car to turn it into a rally car, you have to meet the criteria set by the CAMS Dedicated Rally Car manual. In addition, you have to obtain a conditional registration from your state or territorial government. The terms of the conditional registration vary.
In some cases, you can only have your vehicle on the road if you are testing a route that is going to be used for rally driving, but in other cases, you are legally allowed to drive to and from sanctioned rally events. In both cases, you have to keep a logbook so that you can prove you are only driving your car as allowed. If you have your registration in place, there are a couple of modifications you can make without getting a new rego inspection. Namely, you can add a safety cage and harness-style seat belts without special permission.
3. Recreational and agricultural vehicles may need an exemption from standards.
In other cases, if you make modifications to a recreational vehicle, an agricultural vehicle or a construction vehicle, you may need to get an exemption from the standards associated with road worthiness in most cases. For example, in Queensland, you can get an exemption if the modification is necessary for the work or play that the vehicle is used for and you have a genuine need to drive that vehicle on the road.
If you plan to modify any type of vehicle, you may want to contact your rego inspection office first. Then, you will know for sure if you need to have a new inspection or not.