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Land Transport Rule: Vehicle Exhaust Emissions 2007

This rule applies to motor vehicles that are required to be certified for entry into, or operation in, service. It is aimed at achieving improvements in air quality by reducing the levels of harmful emissions from motor vehicles. 

About the rule

The rule is available in consolidated format (ie, a full, up-to-date, version of the rule including all its amendments) or as the original, unamended rule with separate amendment rules. Choose the option that best suits your needs from the list below.

To access the consolidated version of the rule (available only in PDF format), click on ‘Consolidation’ below.

The electronic versions of legislation on this website, and any legislation printed from the website:

  • have no official status
  • are made available for information only and should not be relied on as the authoritative text.

About the questions and answers

Questions and answers are provided to accompany a new rule or amendment rule when it is signed. These versions of the questions and answers are not updated to take into account any later amendments to the rule and are retained for historic interest only.

Questions and answers about this Rule

Update notes

Contents

1. What does the new Rule cover?

Background

2. What are vehicle exhaust emissions?
3. Why are restrictions on vehicle emissions necessary?
4. Why was the previous Rule revised?
5. What else is the government doing to improve air quality associated with emissions from the vehicle fleet?
6. How does New Zealand’s approach to reducing harmful vehicle emissions compare with other countries?

New vehicles: Updating existing minimum emissions standards for new vehicles imported into New Zealand

7. Why are there so many standards in the tables?
8. How, where and when will new vehicles be certified as adhering to the standard? What happens if they fail?
9. Will introduction of the new standards increase costs for new vehicle dealers?
10. Will introduction of the new standards increase the price of a new vehicle?

Used vehicles: Require minimum emissions standards for used vehicles imported into New Zealand and introduce emissions testing

11. What are the new standards for used petrol vehicles?
12. What are the new standards for used diesel vehicles?
13. Why should used vehicles be tested, if documentation shows that they were originally built to a certain standard?
14. What form of emissions testing is being proposed?
15. Where and when will the tests be administered to used vehicles? What happens if they fail the test?
16. What costs will be faced by emissions testers when the testing is carried out in New Zealand?
17. Will the cost of testing increase the price of a used vehicle?
18. How many vehicles can be expected not to pass the test and what would it cost to repair them?

On-board diagnostic equipment: Vehicles must be fitted with on-board diagnostic (OBD) equipment if required by the emissions standard

19. What is on-board diagnostic equipment and why is it important?
20. Who will this affect?
21. Why is this in the new Rule?
22. When will this be checked?

Removal and tampering: Prohibit removal of, or tampering with, a vehicle's emissions control equipment

23. What is emissions control equipment?
24. Why should removal of, or tampering with, a vehicle's emissions control equipment be prohibited?
25. Who does this affect?
26. How will it be administered?
27. What will happen if I repair or modify the vehicle?

Vehicles that do not have to comply

28. Will any vehicles be permitted to not comply with the Rule? Why?
29. Can other vehicles that do not meet the standards continue to be imported?

General

30. Do these standards apply only to petrol and diesel vehicles?
31. What penalties would apply to vehicles that do not adhere to these minimum emissions standards? What penalties would apply if they do not have On-Board Diagnostic equipment where required?
32. Did the government fully consult prior to implementation of the Rule?
33. When are the new standards expected to take effect?
34. Will dealers have a period of grace to cover vehicles in production?
35. Will vehicles that have passed border inspection under the new exhaust emissions standards be tested to ensure they are continuing to meet the emissions standards at subsequent Warrant of Fitness/Certificate of Fitness inspections?
36. Why are you not tackling the existing in-service fleet?
37. What is the legal basis for this Rule?
38. Will the new standards in the Rule lead to a cleaner fleet?
39. How can I obtain a copy of the Rule?
40. How can I obtain further information about the Rule?

Appendix 1

Table 1 Vehicle exhaust emissions requirements for new petrol, LPG and CNG vehicles
Table 2 Vehicle exhaust emissions requirements for new diesel vehicles
Table 3 Vehicle exhaust emissions requirements for used petrol, LPG and CNG vehicles
Table 4 Vehicle exhaust emissions requirements for used diesel vehicles
Table 5 Acceptable character sets on Japanese deregistration, export certificates or completion inspection certificates


1. What does the new Rule cover?

  1. It updates minimum standards for new vehicles imported into New Zealand
  2. It requires tighter emissions standards for used vehicles imported into New Zealand
  3. It introduces emissions testing of used vehicles at entry to the New Zealand vehicle fleet
  4. It clarifies that vehicles must be fitted with on-board diagnostic equipment if required by the emissions standard to which they have been manufactured
  5. It prohibits removal of, or tampering with, a vehicle's emissions control equipment if such an action would adversely affect the vehicle's emissions
  6. It provides for certain vehicles that do not have to comply with the Rule

Background

2. What are vehicle exhaust emissions?

Vehicle exhaust emissions arise from the combustion of the fuel and air mixture in the engine. Exhaust emission gases generally include carbon monoxide (CO), oxides of nitrogen (NOx), hydrocarbons (HC), particulates, and the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide (CO2).

3. Why are restrictions on vehicle emissions necessary?

Public health: Poor air quality resulting from harmful vehicle emissions can seriously damage people's health.

  • Particulates are primarily associated with diesel vehicles. The most damaging of these are 10 microns or less in size (known as PM10), which are so fine they are inhaled directly into the lungs and then are absorbed into the bloodstream. Particulates lead to premature mortality, and exacerbate respiratory problems such as asthma and bronchitis.
  • Carbon monoxide, primarily associated with petrol vehicles, exacerbates heart disease, causes drowsiness and learning difficulties, and has a small effect on mortality rates.

Anyone may be affected by poor air quality, with children and the elderly most at risk. A National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research Ltd (NIWA) report, commissioned by the Ministry of Transport and released in 2002, estimated that around 400 people were dying prematurely each year from exposure to vehicle emissions.1

A further report, the Health and Air Pollution in New Zealand (HAPiNZ)2 study released in 2007, but based on 2001 data estimated that there were 500 premature deaths associated with vehicle emissions.

The problem is worse in cities and towns with high traffic rates and congestion, where a large proportion of the population is exposed to air pollution.

Vehicle emissions also reduce visibility because of smog and haze.

Government objectives: Reducing harmful emissions contributes to the government objectives in the National Environmental Standards for Air Quality regulated under the Resource Management Act, the New Zealand Transport Strategy's goals of protecting and promoting public health and ensuring environmental sustainability, and may make a small contribution to the objectives of the National Energy Efficiency and Conservation Strategy, the Sustainable Development Programme of Action and the Climate Change Programme.

In addition, under Land Transport (Road User) Rule 2004 (external link) , it is an offence to operate a petrol- or diesel-engined vehicle that emits visible smoke for ten seconds or more on the road. Until the 2006 introduction of the visible smoke check at Warrant of Fitness/Certificate of Fitness inspections, this was New Zealand’s only in-service emissions requirement. This requirement is enforced by the NZ Police.

4. Why was the previous Rule revised?

New vehicles: The previous 2006 Rule set out a table of emissions standards that largely existed at the time of its original drafting in 2002. Since then many of these standards have been updated internationally. A revision was required to adopt more stringent future requirements for new vehicles to bring New Zealand into line with other countries.

Used vehicles: The level of exhaust emissions from a vehicle is primarily determined by the standard to which the vehicle was manufactured. Up until now, imported used vehicles manufactured before 1 January 2004 did not have to comply with a minimum emissions standard. Vehicles only had to have been manufactured to a recognised emissions standard applicable to the year of manufacture. They also did not have to demonstrate that they still complied with or met any minimum standard.

The revised Rule is intended to clearly establish minimum standards for used vehicles. It also introduces a testing regime to ensure that emissions from used vehicle imports have remained within stated limits.

The average age of all types of used vehicles entering the New Zealand fleet is increasing. In 2006 the average age of a used petrol vehicle entering New Zealand was 8.1 years and the average age of a used light diesel vehicle (i.e. cars, vans and 4WDs) entering New Zealand was 9.3 years and heavy diesel vehicles (such as trucks and buses) were 10.4 years old. This compares to slightly over seven years for both petrol and light diesel and 8.2 for heavy diesel vehicles in 2000.

Because of the steady increase in the age of vehicles, New Zealand is not benefiting from other technology gains in safety or fuel consumption that have been occurring at the same time as emissions standards have been improved.

5. What else is the government doing to improve air quality associated with emissions from the vehicle fleet?

Import emissions standards are only one item in a range of government actions designed to tackle the negative effect of transport emissions on air quality. Other measures include the visible smoke check at Warrant of Fitness/Certificate of Fitness time, and improvements in fuel quality. Revised fuel specifications will lead to the reduction of the sulphur content in diesel fuels to 10 parts per million and in petrol to 50 parts per million, further reducing the amount of pollutants emitted from vehicle exhausts.

Other actions can be expected to reduce emissions. These include:

  • further improvements in fuel quality in line with world trends
  • reduction of traffic congestion
  • introduction of biofuels, which as well as reducing output of CO2 (carbon dioxide) a greenhouse gas, generally have lower levels of harmful emissions as well.  
  • other policies to promote the removal of older vehicles from the fleet and to reduce emissions from in-service vehicles.
  • policies being introduced in the climate change area that are intended to reduce the use of vehicles and improve transport efficiency, especially of freight, which are also likely to have benefits for harmful emissions.
  • policies such as ongoing work to promote increased use of public transport and walking and cycling which are likely to lead to air quality benefits.
  • the target for a ten percent reduction in single occupancy trips included in the recently announced New Zealand Energy Efficiency and Conservation Strategy, which should also have a positive effect on harmful, as well as greenhouse gas emissions.

6. How does New Zealand’s approach to reducing harmful vehicle emissions compare with other countries?

The United States and Japan have had emissions standards in place since the late 1970s. Europe has also had emissions controls from the 1970s and has been steadily tightening emissions standards since the early 1990s through its Euro standards regime.

In New Zealand, emissions standards were only put in place in 2003. Without the updating of regulatory controls, vehicles will continue to enter New Zealand with older and less efficient emissions control equipment.

Because New Zealand did not legally require emission controls until recently, we have a very different vehicle mix than overseas. Therefore policies that may have worked in other countries may not be as successful if employed here. For example, most countries New Zealand might compare it self to have required emission controls on vehicles since the 1970s or 1980s and they do not have significant levels of imports of used vehicles. For New Zealand, this means that relatively new vehicles may have no emissions controls on them, while older vehicles, imported from Japan may have very good emissions control on them. New Zealand must therefore develop its own unique approach.

The 2007 Vehicle Exhaust Emissions Rule is an important step towards cleaner air because as well as requiring new, higher emissions standards for vehicles entering the fleet, it now makes it an offence to modify these vehicles to reduce their effectiveness.  This provides a legal foundation for any future testing regime. 

The approach of focussing on requiring high emissions standards on vehicles entering the fleet and prohibiting modification is one followed in Australia.


New vehicles: Updating existing minimum emissions standards for new vehicles imported into New Zealand

What are the new standards for new petrol vehicles?
See Appendix: Table 1

What are the new standards for new diesel vehicles?
See Appendix: Table 2

7. Why are there so many standards in the tables?

The tables need to include the standards applied in every jurisdiction New Zealand recognises to cover all potential imports. A Japanese-manufactured vehicle made for the European market may be certified to a different standard than one for the domestic market in Japan, so we have specified exactly the standards required in New Zealand.

8. How, where and when will new vehicles be certified as adhering to the standard? What happens if they fail?

New vehicle certification will be checked at the time of entry into the New Zealand fleet, by vehicle-inspecting organisations that are required to legally register the vehicle. The vehicle will not require testing if compliance with the standard at manufacture can be shown by documentation.

If the vehicle is not accompanied by the appropriate proof of standards compliance, the vehicle will not be certified for use on New Zealand roads.

9. Will introduction of the new standards increase costs for new vehicle dealers?

As virtually all suppliers of new vehicles for New Zealand also make vehicles for other markets that require high emissions standards, there is not likely to be any increase in cost for dealers.

10. Will introduction of the new standards increase the price of a new vehicle?

As vehicles are manufactured for multiple markets to the same standard, there would be no reason for the price of new cars to rise in New Zealand as a result of introduction in this country of updated vehicle emissions standards.


Used vehicles: Require minimum emissions standards for used vehicles imported into New Zealand and introduce emissions testing

11. What are the new standards for used petrol vehicles?

See Appendix: Table 3

12. What are the new standards for used diesel vehicles?

See Appendix: Table 4

13. Why should used vehicles be tested, if documentation shows that they were originally built to a certain standard?

There is no guarantee that the used vehicle's emissions technology has not deteriorated or been altered since manufacture. In order to ensure that emissions from the New Zealand vehicle fleet are reduced over time, it is proposed that used vehicles entering the fleet should be tested to ensure they continue to meet an acceptable standard at the time they enter the New Zealand fleet. This is the current practice for safety-related standards.

14. What form of emissions testing is being proposed?

As more than 95 per cent of vehicles imported to New Zealand are from Japan, New Zealand will adopt a test equivalent to Japanese in-service emissions tests and test limits relevant to the vehicle's fuel type. These tests will also be appropriate for those vehicles coming from other countries and built to other emissions standards.

These tests are metered tests measuring tailpipe emissions. For petrol, LPG and CNG vehicles it is an idle-test for carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons. The test limits are 1% carbon monoxide and 300 parts per million hydrocarbons, for four-stroke or rotary engine petrol vehicles. For two-stroke petrol, CNG and LPG vehicles the limits are 4.5% carbon monoxide or 7800 parts per million hydrocarbons.

For diesel vehicles it will be a snap acceleration test, with a requirement for smoke levels to be less than 25 per cent of opacity.

15. Where and when will the tests be administered to used vehicles? What happens if they fail the test?

The Rule allows for vehicles to be tested in Japan prior to being exported to New Zealand, or they could be tested by vehicle inspectors in New Zealand responsible for registering vehicles for legal entry into the New Zealand fleet.

If a vehicle fails the test in New Zealand or Japan, it will need to be brought up to the appropriate standard and retested before being registered in New Zealand.

Emission testing for used vehicles will be implemented from 1 May 2008

16. What costs will be faced by emissions testers when the testing is carried out in New Zealand?

The price of the equipment will depend partly on the final decision as to the exact nature of the testing procedures, but an appropriate unit is likely to cost $5,000-$10,000, although costs can range up to $20,000.

Testing sites may also have to install appropriate occupational safety and health equipment to deal with any excess harmful emissions arising from the testing procedures. These costs will vary greatly depending on where the testing is carried out.

17. Will the cost of testing increase the price of a used vehicle?

The cost of emissions testing, whether carried out in Japan or New Zealand, is estimated to be approx $25-$30 (including the impact of installation costs) per vehicle. This cost would be passed onto the vehicle importer and ultimately to the customer. At present, it costs approximately $600 to certify and fully register a vehicle for use in New Zealand. The additional emissions test cost would not be significant in this context.

18. How many vehicles can be expected not to pass the test and what would it cost to repair them?

In 2006 the Ministry of Transport had a sample of petrol and diesel vehicles tested in Japan2. The study found that around 4% of the petrol vehicles failed for having excessive carbon monoxide emissions, but around 16% failed for excessive hydrocarbon emissions (HC). Subsequent analysis suggests that the high level of failures for excessive HC levels were likely to be rectified very simply, possibly by driving the vehicle around the block to properly warm the engine. Other repairs were also likely to be relatively easy to address, such as new air filters or spark plugs.

The same study showed that over 50% of the diesel vehicles tested failed. The study could not diagnose the faults and costs might vary from replacement of an air filter to many thousands of dollars for major repair work3.

2, 3 Emissions Tail Pipe Test Trial Final Report, JEVIC NZ Ltd, October 2006 http://www.transport.govt.nz/results-of-testing-emissions-of-Japanese-used-vehicles-1/ (external link)


On-board diagnostic equipment: Vehicles must be fitted with on-board diagnostic (OBD) equipment if required by the emissions standard

19. What is on-board diagnostic equipment and why is it important?

This technology is required to monitor that a vehicle's emissions control equipment is functioning. It is required by most recent emissions standards for petrol and diesel vehicles including Euro 3 for petrol vehicles and Euro 4 for diesel-powered heavy vehicles. It is possible to use an electronic scan tool to check that the equipment is functioning as part of an emissions test.

The technology will also display a warning light on the dashboard to advise the owner that there may be a fault with their vehicle. It is therefore a way for most people to ensure their own vehicle continues to operate properly.

20. Who will this affect?

This will only affect importers of new vehicles into New Zealand. They must ensure that the vehicles they import meet not only the levels of emissions in the exhaust, but that they have all other relevant technology set out in the standards that are designed to ensure vehicles continue to have low emissions throughout their life.

21. Why is this in the new Rule?

There was a concern that the 2006 Rule, as worded, may have been vague about the requirement to fit OBD equipment. This equipment is essential to ensure that exhaust emissions remain within stated limits over time. For the avoidance of any doubt, the Rule clarifies that on-board diagnostic equipment must be fitted, where required by the relevant emissions standard.

22. When will this be checked?

The check will take place during initial vehicle registration procedures for entry into the New Zealand fleet.


Removal and tampering: Prohibit removal of, or tampering with, a vehicle's emissions control equipment

23. What is emissions control equipment?

Emissions control equipment includes technologies on petrol vehicles such as catalytic converters and electronic engine management systems (essentially computer chips that monitor the performance of the vehicle's components and adjust these to minimise emissions). On diesel vehicles, emissions control equipment includes exhaust gas recirculation systems, filters, particulate traps and electronic engine management systems. This equipment is designed to manage the harmful emissions produced by vehicles.

24. Why should removal of, or tampering with, a vehicle's emissions control equipment be prohibited?

This control is important in ensuring that once vehicles are in the fleet they are not modified in a way that will make their emissions worse.

Previously, there was no requirement that emissions control technologies must remain on a vehicle, or continue to be working effectively. There have been cases where emissions control technologies were actively tampered with or removed because the owner thinks this will enhance the vehicle's performance. Equipment may also have been removed because it was damaged in an accident or has developed genuine faults and owners had no obligation to maintain, retain or replace such equipment.

A report prepared for the Ministry of Transport indicates that up to 10% of petrol vehicles may have had their catalytic converters removed.

The Government wishes to make it clear that removal of, or tampering with, this equipment is not acceptable.

Although the Rule does not require testing of all vehicles in our fleet this requirement makes it clear that if testing is introduced, vehicle owners will have had a legal obligation to maintain their vehicles.

Although the requirement may be seen as primarily targeting those who modify petrol vehicles it applies equally to diesel vehicles. 

25.  Who does this affect?

This applies only to vehicles first registered for use in New Zealand after the new Rule came into effect. It is not considered practical to apply such a requirement retrospectively.

26.  How will it be administered?

Used vehicles will undergo a metered emissions test during inspection at the time of their arrival in New Zealand, to ensure that the emissions control equipment is working as intended.

Vehicles are also expected to undergo a visual check to confirm that key elements of emissions control technologies are present, as part of ongoing Warrant of Fitness/Certificate of Fitness inspections associated with the visible smoke check and checking of the exhaust system. If there is reason for an inspector to suspect a vehicle may have been modified, it may be required to pass the same emissions test that applies for used vehicles at entry.

The prohibition on removal of, or tampering with, a vehicle’s emissions control equipment is important because it lays the foundations for any future metered emissions test. There will no longer be any excuse for a vehicle not to meet a test standard.

27. What will happen if I repair or modify the vehicle?

If a vehicle’s exhaust emissions equipment is modified or repaired, it will be a requirement that the repair enables the vehicle to continue to comply with the standard to which it was built. If there is doubt over whether the modification is appropriate, a vehicle may be required to undergo an emissions test to demonstrate compliance. This provision applies only to vehicles that are required to comply with a specific standard when they enter the New Zealand fleet, it does not apply to vehicles that are already part of the in-service fleet.

4 Vehicle Emissions Pilot Project Report for Petrol Vehicles, Fuel Technology Ltd and Auckland UniServices Ltd, January 2006, http://www.transport.govt.nz/pilot-project-report-for-petrol-vehicles-index/ (external link)


Vehicles that do not have to comply

28. Will any vehicles be permitted to not comply with the Rule? Why?

New Zealand Defence Force: Diesel vehicles compliant with the recently introduced Euro 4 standard, and other planned standards, may shut down their engines or operate at lower power when the emissions control equipment is not operating as intended. The New Zealand Defence Force needs to be able to operate its vehicles in remote areas, overseas and in battlefield conditions, where a loss of power would not be acceptable. These vehicles would be permitted to contain an ‘Override’ facility (also known as a ‘defeat device’) to counter any loss of power. Such devices are acceptable in similar circumstances in other jurisdictions from which New Zealand imports vehicles. When an override facility is not in use, these vehicles will continue to comply with the emission standards they are built to.

Pre-1 January 1990: Older vehicles, defined as vehicles manufactured before 1 January 1990, will not have to comply with the new standards. These vehicles are limited in number and would often not have been built to any particular emissions standard.

Tractors: constructed principally for towing an agricultural trailer or powering agricultural implements will not have to comply with the new standards.

Mobile cranes: specialist vehicles constructed as mobile cranes will not have to comply with the new standards but this does not include a truck mounted with crane apparatus.

Immigrants (baggage vehicles), special interest and motor sport vehicles: will not have to comply with the new standards under a proposed amendment to Land Transport Rule: Frontal Impact 2001. NB: Immigrants' vehicles are generally of a high standard, but the owners are unlikely to have documentation to clearly demonstrate their compliance. To prevent any potential abuse of this provision, the Rule proposes the same requirements as are in the proposed Land Transport Rule: Frontal Impact Amendment [2008]  that vehicles must have been owned overseas for a period and cannot be sold in New Zealand for a fixed period. This amendment is scheduled to be signed before mid 2008.

Low Volume Production Vehicles: however these must comply with the emission requirements of the Low Volume Vehicle Code.

29. Can other vehicles that do not meet the standards continue to be imported?

A vehicle that does not meet a standard may continue to be imported and used on private roads, be repaired or otherwise brought up to standard if possible, or be broken up for parts.


General

30. Do these standards apply only to petrol and diesel vehicles?

A small number of dedicated LPG vehicles (vehicles that only operate on LPG) are manufactured in Australia and imported into New Zealand. Minimum emission standards will now apply to these also. No vehicles are currently imported that run solely on CNG but these are included where relevant standards exist.

Alternative fuels, such as LPG and CNG, usually have lower levels of harmful exhaust emissions than petrol or diesel vehicles.

The Rule will not affect vehicles running on biofuels – either as a mixture or 100% biofuel. All vehicles currently compatible with biofuels are certified to comply with either petrol or diesel vehicle standards and will not be unduly affected. 

31. What penalties would apply to vehicles that do not adhere to these minimum emissions standards? What penalties would apply if they do not have On-Board Diagnostic equipment where required?

Vehicles that do not adhere to minimum emissions standards will not be registered for use on New Zealand roads.

32. Did the government fully consult prior to implementation of the Rule?

Land Transport NZ has publicly notified and consulted on the proposed Rule on behalf of the Minister of Transport in accordance with section 161 (2) of the Land Transport Act 1998. Formal consultation on the proposed Rule began in May 2007 when Land Transport NZ made the yellow (public consultation) draft available to about 850 organisations and individuals who had registered their interest in the Rule. The availability of the yellow draft was publicised in metropolitan and selected regional daily newspapers, Mana Magazine and the New Zealand Gazette. The draft was also made available, together with Questions and Answers, on the Land Transport NZ website. Submissions on the yellow draft closed on 9 July 2007. In addition to considering the written submissions, the Ministry of Transport participated in and took on-board feedback from a series of seminars organised by the Independent Motor Vehicle Dealers Association (IMVDA) and the Motor Trade Association (MTA), held in the main centres of New Zealand in May and July 2007.  Both the Ministry and Land Transport NZ have also held meetings with stakeholders on matters concerning the implementation of the Rule.

33. When are the new standards expected to take effect?

The Rule comes into force progressively from 3 January 2008. New vehicles will need to comply from 3 January 2008, as the standards relate to the date of manufacture. However, there will be a delay in the requirement for used vehicles to meet the new standards until 1 February 2008 to allow for vehicles still 'on the water' at the time the Rule came into effect.

Emission testing of used vehicles will not commence until 1 May 2008.

34. Will dealers have a period of grace to cover vehicles in production?

No, new car standards apply from the date of the vehicle’s manufacture.

35. Will vehicles that have passed border inspection under the new exhaust emissions standards be tested to ensure they are continuing to meet the emissions standards at subsequent Warrant of Fitness/Certificate of Fitness inspections?

This Rule is primarily targeting vehicles at point of entry into New Zealand. If there is reason for an inspector at warrant or certificate of fitness tests to suspect a vehicle may have been modified, it may be required to pass the same emissions test that applies for used vehicles at entry. All vehicles will continue to be required to undergo a visible smoke check at subsequent Warrant of Fitness/Certificate of Fitness inspections. Other emissions testing at Warrant of Fitness/Certificate of Fitness inspection is under consideration as a separate project.

36. Why are you not tackling the existing in-service fleet?

We will be continuing to review the in-service fleet. This will be a separate project.
We have already introduced the visible smoke check at Warrant of Fitness/Certificate of Fitness inspections.
Under the Road User Rule, it is also illegal for a petrol- or diesel-powered vehicle to emit smoke for ten seconds or more on-road.

37. What is the legal basis for this Rule?

The Land Transport Act 1998 provides for the Minister of Transport to make Land Transport Rules that set out standards and requirements relating to vehicle emissions.

38. Will the new standards in the Rule lead to a cleaner fleet?

Yes, the new Rule will lead to a cleaner fleet, but the effect may not be immediate.

Because it takes nearly twenty years for the vehicle fleet to turn over, the major benefits of the Rule are expected in the medium to longer term (beyond the ten year time frame analysed in the Covec report[1].

The Covec report assumed that on average, each vehicle will be used more if fleet turnover rates fall (i.e. if people retain their current vehicles). The models used in the report indicate that if the standards were introduced as proposed in the consultation draft of the Rule, the rate at which air quality improves is likely to be slower than otherwise would be the case as older vehicles replacement rates slow down and vehicles are driven further.  Covec identified that it was not possible to predict accurately how people would change their behaviour. The same models showed the Rule could lead to considerable improvements in emissions if people drove their existing vehicles the same, or less distances after the Rule came into effect.

For simplicity, the Covec analysis assumed the Government takes no other actions to reduce emissions from the existing fleet and that no external factors such as fuel price rises altered people’s behaviour. However, there are already a range of policies that the Government is introducing to reduce emissions in addition to the Vehicle Exhaust Emissions Rule. These are set out above under 5. What else is the government doing to improve air quality associated with emissions from the vehicle fleet?

39. How can I obtain a copy of the Rule?

A printed copy of the final Rule will be available for purchase from selected bookshops throughout New Zealand that sell government legislation. A copy can also be obtained by contacting the Rules printers and distributors (Wickliffe Limited) on (06) 358 8231. Final rules are available on our website.

40.  How can I obtain further information about the Rule?

To obtain further information about this Rule, you can contact the NZ Transport Agency Contact Centre on freephone 0800 699 000. The Rule will also be available on the Ministry of Transport website (external link) .


Appendix 1

Table 1    Vehicle exhaust emissions requirements for new petrol, LPG and CNG vehicles

Date of manufactureApproved vehicle emissions standard
New petrol, LPG and CNG vehicles
Light vehiclesHeavy vehicles
New modelExisting modelNew modelExisting model
Before 3 January 2008 ADR 79/01;
Euro 3;
Japan 00/02; or
US 2001
ADR 79/01;
Euro 3;
Japan 00/02; or
US 2001
ADR 80/01;
Japan 00/02; or
US 98P
ADR 80/01;
Japan 00/02; or
US 98P
On or after
3 January 2008
and before
1 January 2009
Before 1 July 2008
ADR 79/01;
On or after 1 July 2008
ADR 79/02;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004
ADR 79/01
Euro 3;
Japan 00/02; or
US 2001
ADR 80/02;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004
ADR 80/02;
Euro 4
Japan 00/02; or
US 98P
On or after
1 January 2009
and before
1 January 2010
ADR 79/02
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004

ADR 79/01
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004

ADR 80/02;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004

ADR 80/02;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004

On or after
1 January 2010
and before
1 January 2011
ADR 79/02
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004
Before 1 July 2010
ADR 79/01;
On or after 1 July 2010
ADR 79/02;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004
ADR 80/03;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004
ADR 80/02;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004

Table 2      Vehicle exhaust emissions requirements for new diesel vehicles

Date of manufactureApproved vehicle emissions standard
New diesel vehicles
Light vehiclesHeavy vehicles
New modelExisting modelNew modelExisting model
Before 3 January 2008 ADR 79/01
and
ADR 30/01;
Euro 4;
Japan 02/04; or
US 2004
ADR 79/01
and
ADR 30/01;
Euro 4;
Japan 02/04; or
US 2004
ADR 80/00
and
ADR 30/01;
Euro 3;
Japan 02/04; or
US 2004
ADR 80/00
and
ADR 30/01;
Euro 3;
Japan 02/04; or
US 98D
On or after 3 January 2008
and before
1 January 2009
ADR 79/01
and
ADR 30/01;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004
ADR 79/01
and
ADR 30/01;
Euro 4;
Japan 02/04; or
US 2004
ADR 80/02
and
ADR 30/01;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004
ADR 80/00
and
ADR 30/01;
Euro 3;
Japan 02/04; or
US 2004
On or after 1 January 2009
and before
1 January 2010
ADR 79/01
and
ADR 30/01;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004
ADR 79/01
and
ADR 30/01;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004
ADR 80/02
and
ADR 30/01;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2007
ADR 80/02
and
ADR 30/01;
Euro 4;
Japan 02/04; or
US 2004
On or after 1 January 2010
and before
1 January 2011
ADR 79/01
and
ADR 30/01;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004
ADR 79/01
and
ADR 30/01;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004
ADR 80/03
and
ADR 30/01;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2007
ADR 80/02
and
ADR 30/01;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004

Table 3     Vehicle exhaust emissions requirements for used petrol, LPG and CNG vehicles

Certified for entry into serviceApproved vehicle emissions standard
Used petrol, LPG and CNG vehicles
Light vehiclesHeavy vehicles
On or after 3 January 2008 and
before 1 January 2009
ADR 79/00;
Euro 2;
Japan 98;
US 2001
ADR 80/02;
Japan 00/02; or
US 98P

On or after 1 January 2009 and
before 1 January 2012

ADR 79/01;
Euro 3;
Japan 00/02; or
US 2001

ADR 80/02
Japan 00/02; or
US 98P

On or after 1 January 2012 and
before 1 January 2013

ADR 79/02;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004

ADR 80/02;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004

Table 4     Vehicle exhaust emissions requirements for used diesel vehicles

Certified for entry into serviceApproved vehicle emissions standard
Used diesel vehicles
Light vehiclesHeavy vehicles
On or after 3 January 2008
and before 1 January 2009
ADR 30/01 and ADR 79/01;
Euro 4;
Japan 02/04; or
US 2004
ADR 30/01 and ADR 80/00
Euro 3;
Japan 02/04; or
US 2004
On or after 1 January 2009
and before 1 January 2010
ADR 30/01 and ADR 79/01;
Euro 4;
Japan 02/04; or
US 2004
ADR 30/01 and ADR 80/02;
Euro 4;
Japan 02/04; or
US 2004
On or after 1 January 2010
and before 1 January 2013
ADR 30/01 and ADR 79/01;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004
ADR 30/01 and ADR 80/02;
Euro 4;
Japan 05; or
US 2004

Table 5     Acceptable character sets on Japanese deregistration, export certificates or completion inspection certificates

RegulationFuel type
Petrol, CNG or LPGDiesel
Japan 98 Those complying to the 98 standard or the 98 Idling standard GF, HK, GG, HL, GC, HG, GD, HH, GE, HJ, BA, BB Not applicable
Japan 00/02 Those complying to the 2000 Regulations GH, GJ, HN, HP, LA, LB, Not applicable
LN, LP, LQ, LR, LS, TA, TB, TN, TP, TQ, TS, TR, UA, UB, UN, UP, UQ, US, UR XA, XB, YA, YB, ZA, ZB
Those complying to the 2001 Regulations GK, GL, HQ, HR, LC, LD, TC, TD, UC, UD, XC, XD, YC, YD, ZC, ZD Not applicable
Those complying to the 2002 Regulations GM, HS, LE, TE, UE, XE, YE, ZE Not applicable
Japan 02/04 Those complying to the 2002 Regulations Not applicable HT, HU, HW, KM, KN, KP, LF, LG, LH, TF, TG, TH, UF, UG, UH, XF, XG, XH, YF,YG, YH, ZF, ZG, ZH
Those complying to the 2003 Regulations HX, HY, KQ, KR, LJ, LK, LL, PA, PB, PC, PD, PE, PF, PG, PH, SA, SB, SC, SD, TJ, TK, TL, UJ, UK, UL, VA, VB, VC, VD, VE, VF, VG, VH, XJ, XK, XL, YJ, YK, YL, ZJ, ZK, ZL,
Those complying to the 2004 regulations HZ, KS, LM, PJ, PK, PL, PM, PN, PP, PQ, PR, TM, UM, VJ, VK, VL, VM, VN, VP, VQ, VR, XM, YM,ZM
Japan 05 Those complying to the 2005 Regulations Those displaying a three digit emissions code (eg, ‘AAA’, and ‘ABA’, ‘DAA’)

 

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