AAAA and Caravan Industry Association of Australia clarify current 4WD upgrade rule status

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The Australian Automotive Aftermarket Association (AAAA), the nation’s peak body for the manufacturers, distributors and retailers of automotive parts and accessories, along with the Caravan Industry Association of Australia, wish to clarify the situation relating to proposed 4WD law changes in Queensland which has generated media coverage around the country in recent days.

The recent media articles, specifically those that appear in the Courier Mail (Brisbane) of August 21, 2018, vastly exaggerate the effect of the current Federal Government rules which only apply to towing capacity upgrades made on pre-registered vehicles. This has understandably alarmed industry businesses along with their customers.

Members of the AAAA perform safe and responsible vehicle upgrades in Queensland and will continue to do so. The AAAA are working constructively with the Queensland Government on their proposed state based 4WD vehicle modification standards, contrary to what has been stated in several of the recent media articles.

Both the AAAA and Caravan Industry Association of Australia support 4WD owners and caravan industry consumers in obtaining responsible vehicle modifications that ensure safer towing.

Both industry organisations are seeking national uniformity in relation to the highly responsible, effective and road safety enhancing 4WD modification rules that currently apply across the rest of the country.

“It makes no sense to think that vehicles which are highly likely to cross state lines are subject to different modification rules and we do want to see the Queensland Government take into account the 4WD suspension modification rules that apply in all of the other states and territories,” stated Stuart Charity, AAAA Executive Director.

“There is currently a disconnect between Queensland and New South Wales on suspension height upgrades and this is of major concern – but to imply that you can’t upgrade a vehicle in Queensland anymore is simply not true and has caused major alarm amongst that state’s 4WD and Caravanning community, representing hundreds of thousands of motorists.

“The AAAA has invested heavily in providing full engineering and testing evidence to all Federal and State Government regulators to prove the ongoing compliance and safety of suspension upgrades and we look forward to working with the Queensland Government to ensure that any future changes in State regulation have the benefit of input from industry experts”, he added.

According to Stuart Lamont, Chief Executive Officer of the CIAA, “The modern day caravanner crosses many state borders and the lack of harmonisation of state based regulations does nothing other than confuse the market.  As one country, the concept of barrier free travel must be a priority to ensure that the many regional areas that the travelling caravanning community frequents are able to be enjoyed in a safe and legal manner and without frivolous impediment.”

“The caravanning community is worth billions of dollars annually to the Queensland economy and political uncertainty over policy does little to stimulate or provide confidence to the 4WD and caravanning markets,” Mr Lamont stated.

The AAAA and Caravan Industry Association of Australia are ready to assist in bringing all of the parties together to achieve national consistency in relation to 4WD vehicle upgrades.