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Industry Supports Tariff Plan Cut to Make SAfe New Cars Even More Affordable

Australia’s peak motor industry body, the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries, has thrown its support behind calls to reduce vehicle tariffs, a move which it says will give more Australian drivers access to the latest safety technology.

The FCAI’s Chief Executive Tony Weber described the proposition as providing two significant advantages as it would not only help save lives on our roads by providing cheaper access to safety technology, but also help reduce vehicle emissions and CO2.

“This tariff reduction proposal should be viewed as an investment in safety and technology,” Mr Weber said.

“Currently around 88 per cent of new vehicles are five-star ANCAP safety rated. However, in direct contrast to that, the current average age of the total vehicle fleet on Australia roads is around 10 years.

“Abolishing the new vehicle tariff would pass on thousands of dollars in price cuts at the showroom, which would make more vehicles with advanced safety features such as autonomous emergency braking (AEB) and lane-keeping assistance more affordable for the average consumer.

“The flow-on effect of this would also benefit our environment because new vehicles produce fewer emissions and CO2.

“The industry is very much encouraged by the Deputy Prime Minister’s comment that this proposal has merit, and we would seek an opportunity to discuss this further with him.”

Mr Weber said that the industry had been vocal for some time about the need to reduce vehicle tariffs and abolish the arbitrary Luxury Car Tax, which distorts the market and does nothing to assist the trickle-down of vehicle safety technology into cheaper cars.

“The latest safety technology on offer by vehicle manufacturers has proven life-saving capabilities. There are a number of key elements to reducing trauma on our roads and the newer cars with features such as automatic lane keeping, warning systems, and fatigue detection, are a vital part of that safety package,” he said.

“With Government intervention through tariff reduction, vehicles can play an even larger role in saving lives on our roads.”