Motor vehicle registrations – dashboard and open data

The motor vehicle registrations dashboard shows all vehicles registered in New Zealand for the first time, during the most recent calendar month. It also shows a subset of reregistered vehicles – full reregistration data will be available in the future. The dashboard is designed for websites, please be aware it is not ideal to use on smart devices.

You can filter and analyse the data using one or many dimensions – for explanations of each, see the list of dashboard term definitions below.

You can export the data by clicking on the 'export data' icon at the top right of the dashboard.

Motor vehicle registrations dashboard user guide [PDF, 998 KB]

Dashboard term definitions

Data reuse and data quality caveats

If you have any questions or feedback on this dashboard and open data, email us at

Register to get emails when we improve the dashboard(external link) 

Note: These numbers are a snapshot of the data at the end of every month. Some attributes may have an “undefined” value. This happens when the data isn’t recorded initially, but is updated after first registration.

Dashboard term definitions

Where a term has an asterisk (*) you can find more detail in the entry certification Vehicle Inspection Requirements Manual (VIRM).

Entry certification VIRM – vehicle attribute definitions(external link)

  • Axle Type and Axle Code: the axle configuration on the vehicle. Only recorded for NZ New heavy vehicles.
  • Body type: subsets of vehicle types.*
  • CC grouping – motorcycle: groupings that match Waka Kotahi motorcycle CC (engine size) categories. Filter by motorcycle category before using this – filtering by cc grouping first will filter across all vehicle types.
  • CC grouping – vehicle: groupings that match Waka Kotahi vehicle cc (engine size) categories. Filter by vehicle category before using this – filtering by cc grouping first will filter across all vehicle types.
  • CC rating: engine size – the vehicle’s engine capacity in cubic centimetres (cc). This also includes electric vehicles.*
  • Country of origin: this field describes the country where the vehicle was principally manufactured.*
  • Country of prev reg:  this field indicates the country that the vehicle was previously registered in.*
  • GVM (Gross Vehicle Mass): the maximum your vehicle can weigh in kilograms when fully loaded, as specified by the manufacturer.*
  • GVM group: groupings that match Waka Kotahi GVM grouping weight categories.
  • GVM Group Breakdown: groupings that further break down GVM group into more defined categories.
  • Import status: the vehicle’s status when it was registered.*
  • Industry class: the industry sector the vehicle is used in.
  • Make, model and vehicle submodel: make and model come from a pre-defined list. Submodel is a free text field.*
    For example:
    • Make: Mitsubishi
    • Model: V3000
    • Sub-model: Super saloon

Vehicle make and model cleansing code (GitHub)(external link)

  • Month year: select which dates you want data for.
  • Motive power: the vehicle’s energy source, for example petrol, diesel or electric.*
  • Motive power category: more general categories of motive power.
  • MVMA Code: model code (also known as MIA code), is assigned by the manufacturer at the time of VIN allocation to NZ-new vehicles. Only recorded for NZ New vehicles.
  • Owner Type: the registered person type of the vehicle. Is defined as Individual, Company or Other.
  • Physical town: the town where the registered owner is based.
  • Power KW: in kilowatts (kW), field indicates the power rating of the vehicle.  Only recorded for NZ new vehicles.
  • Region: the region where the registered owner is based.
  • Registration MMM-YYYY: month and year of vehicle registration.
  • Registration sequence: reporting on first registrations of vehicles.
  • Reporting period: ability to report on different slices of time (most recent month, year to data cumulative, or select months for reporting purposes). One of these three has to be selected.
  • Road Transport Code: the type of road transport the vehicle is used for. Only recorded for vehicles with industry class recorded as "commercial road transport". Data is that provided by the owner or dealer and is not verified or certified.
  • Territorial authority: the city or district council where the vehicle is registered.
  • Vehicle status: active vehicle – registered. Inactive vehicles – registered and registration cancelled in the same month. Reversed – vehicle was incorrectly registered, and registration was reversed to correct the error.
  • Vehicle type: the type of vehicle, for example motorcycle, car or tractor.*
  • Vehicle usage: the vehicle’s primary use or purpose when it was registered.
  • Vehicle year: the year of first registration anywhere.* This definition has changed over time. See the Vehicle year – motor vehicle registration (MVR) history section below for further details.
  • VIN First 11: first 11 characters of the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN). This field can be repeated since VIN is a group of 17 letters and numbers that identifies a vehicle.


Vehicle year data collection

The way we've recorded vehicle year in the Motor Vehicle Register (MVR) has changed over time. The table below outlines these changes.

Date of 1st NZ registration or certification Recorded in the MVR Notes
Before 1994 All vehicles: Year of manufacture Up to the early 1990s this was simple, because vehicles were generally assembled new in New Zealand.
From 1994

Used imports and re-registrations: Year of first registration or year of manufacture

New vehicles: year of manufacture or model year

In the early 1990s the market changed – the local vehicle assembly industry was dying and more vehicles (new and used) were being imported. This meant a mixture of model year, year of first registration and year of manufacture being provided.

Finding the year of manufacture for used vehicles was difficult, particularly from Japan. As a result, year of first registration was the default, as Japanese transport authorities do not record year of manufacture. For new vehicles, the default was model year.

1 July 1995 saw an upgraded MVR, and the current licence label format was introduced. The year provided was entered into a data field named year of manufacture, but printed on the licence label as vehicle year. The data field was later renamed to vehicle year to cover the varying types of date provided.

In addition, the date of first registration and year of first registration anywhere in the world were recorded in the MVR for all vehicles.

From November 1999 All vehicles: Year of manufacture, or if unknown, year of first registration

With the implementation of Land Transport Rule: Vehicle Standards Compliance 1998, pre-registration procedures matched the definition of vehicle year provided in the rule:

The calendar year in which the construction of the vehicle was completed provided that, if there is no means of demonstrating the year of manufacture, the year of manufacture is the year the vehicle was first registered in any country.

Year of first registration continued to be the default, due to difficulties finding year of manufacture for used vehicles.

For new vehicles, the model year was still used because the model year was set by the manufacturer, who used year of first registration.

From 28 February 2005

Used vehicles and re-registrations: Year of manufacture, or if unknown, year of first registration

New vehicles: Year of manufacture

No change for used vehicles.

The change using only year of manufacture for new vehicles was set by the Ministry of Transport to match the recording of fuel consumption information, and was based on the year of manufacture. Model year was no longer used, as it could be after the year of manufacture – for example a 2007 model may have been manufactured in 2006.

Used vehicles still sometimes recorded year of first registration sometimes – instead of year of manufacture – because it was difficult to give the year of manufacture.

From 5 December 2005

All vehicles: Year of manufacture or model year

Vehicle year matched the definition in the Consumer Information Standards (Used Motor Vehicles) Regulations 2004.

Year of first registration was still common for used vehicles. This was because of:

  • difficulties in verifying the year of manufacture, particularly vehicles from Japan
  • likely changes to the consumer regulations that were expected from policy review and consultation carried out by the Ministry of Consumer Affairs.
From 1 January 2007 All vehicles: Year of first registration This change happened because of and agreement between the motor industry, the Ministry of Transport and Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency. The agreement recognised that:
  • the year of first registration is the most commonly-available date attribute
  • it’s best to standardise the information used.

The Motor Industry Association defined the year of first registration as the same as model year for new vehicles. This may change in future, for example if government databases want to record extra information, for example year of manufacture.

Data reuse and data quality caveats

In most situations, the data will be available at the start of each month. The dashboard shows the last updated date as a timestamp.


This data and its accompanying information are released under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International licence (CC BY 4.0)(external link)

Related data


If you have any questions or feedback on this dashboard and open data, email us at


Back to top