Are you planning to buy a used or new car? If you are, alongside the purchase price, you'll also have to take into consideration how much stamp duty you'll need to pay. If you're unsure what stamp duty is, whether you'll need to pay it and how much it's going to cost, we've got all the answers. Read on to find out everything you need to know about stamp duty payable on your next car, truck or another vehicle.

What is stamp duty?

When a vehicle is purchased, it needs to be registered with its new owner. This is the case whether the vehicle is bought new, from a car showroom, or as a used vehicle from a dealership or private sale. Depending on where you live in the country, the relevant state or territory government demands a one-off tax (stamp duty) to cover the cost of the transfer documents.

Note that the amount of stamp duty that's payable varies from state to state and between territories.

Who pays stamp duty?

The buyer of a vehicle is responsible for paying stamp duty. The stamp duty is paid to the state in which the person to whom the vehicle is registered lives. For example, if a person from Victoria buys a car that's currently registered in Queensland, they will need to pay stamp duty to the Victorian government.

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Stamp duty exemptions

Although in most cases you will need to pay stamp duty on your newly purchased vehicle, each state and territory allows for exemptions - circumstances where stamp duty will not be payable. These are detailed below.


Queensland


You may be eligible for stamp duty exemption if any of the following apply:

- The vehicle is part of a divorce settlement or property settlement following the dissolution of a civil partnership.
- The vehicle is a gift from a relative.
- If the vehicle is registered in Qld or interstate.
- The vehicle is for business use.
- The vehicle's owner has lost one, or both, legs.
- If you're a car salesperson or vehicle dealer.
- If the vehicle is one of the assets being transferred as part of a business restructure.
- The owner is ex-military.
- The vehicle is to be used for primary production (such as agriculture, logging or mining).
- The vehicle's previous owner has died and the vehicle is part of their estate.
- The vehicle is for use by a charity.

Note that seniors may qualify for a discount, but aren't exempt from stamp duty.

More information can be found on the Queensland Government website.

Victoria

Exemptions apply in the following circumstances:

- Vehicles that are assets being considered as part of a business restructure, merger or similar.
- Vehicles that form part of a deceased individual's estate.
- Vehicles that are used to transport disabled people, their wheelchairs and other specialist equipment.
- Vehicles used in primary production.
- Vehicles forming part of the assets under consideration as part of a divorce settlement.
- Vehicles purchased by an authorised car dealer.
- Vehicle transfer between trustees.
- Interstate transfers.
- Vehicles that are used for charitable purposes.

Victorians can also benefit from reductions in stamp duty if their vehicle is classified as a "green" vehicle, or if its primary use is to transport passengers involved in a primary industry - for example, transporting farm workers between different areas of the farm.

More information can be found on the Victorian Government website.

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Northern Territory

Exemptions are broadly similar to those for NSW, Queensland and the other states. More information is available on the Northern Territory Government website.

South Australia

A full list of exemptions from vehicle stamp duty is available on the South Australia Government website.

Most exemptions are similar to those for Queensland or Victoria. Of particular note is that South Australi offers exemptions for buses, vehicles owned by the crown, local council vehicles and repossessed vehicles.

New South Wales

Some of the most common exemptions from vehicle stamp duty in NSW are listed below. A more comprehensive list can be found on the New South Wales Government website.

- DVA pensioners are exempt from vehicle stamp duty.
- Buyers of caravans, trailers or campers are usually exempt from stamp duty.
- HGVs weighing more than 4.5 tonnes are exempt.

Tasmania

A full list of stamp duty exemptions is provided on the Tasmanian Government website.

Tasmanian exemptions are broadly similar to those for Queensland, Victoria and NSW.

Western Australia

In Western Australia, stamp duty exemption is available where:

- The vehicle forms part of a divorce settlement.
- The vehicle is an asset under consideration as part of a corporate restructure.
- There is charitable use of the vehicle.
- A caravan or trailer has a transfer of ownership.

More information is available on the Western Australia Government website.

Australian Capital Territory

ACT has a list of vehicles that may be exempt from stamp duty. You can find it on the Australian Capital Territory website.

Stamp duty prices and details by state/territory

Queensland

Stamp duty is based on the capacity of the vehicle's engine, as well as its price.

Vehicles costing less than $100,000.
2 rotors, 1-4 cylinders or a steam vehicle $3/$100
3 rotors, 5.6 cylinders $3.5/$100.
7 or more cylinders $4/$100.
Electric/hybrid vehicles $2/$100.

Vehicles costing more than $100,000
2 rotors, 1-4 cylinders or a steam vehicle $5/$100
3 rotors, 5.6 cylinders $5.50/$100.
7 or more cylinders $6/$100.
Electric/hybrid vehicles $4/$100.

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Victoria

Victorian stamp duty is dependent on whether the vehicle is new or used, what type of vehicle it is and its price.

New

Non-passenger car $5.40/$200
Passenger vehicle costing $66,331 or less $8.40/$200
A high-end passenger vehicle costing more than $66,331 $10.40/$200.

Used

Non-passenger car $8.40/$200
Passenger vehicle costing $66,331 or less $8.40/$200
A high-end passenger vehicle costing more than $66,331 $8.40/$200.

Northern Territory

Vehicle tax is $3/$100 of the purchase price.

South Australia

Commercial vehicles have different stamp duty rates from non-commercial vehicles. The non-commercial rates are given below.

<$1,000: $1/$100 (minimum $5).
>$1,000 but <$2,000: $2/$100 plus $10.
>$2,000 but <$3,000: $3/$100 plus $30.
>$3,000 $4/$100 plus $60.

New South Wales

NSW stamp duty is solely dependent on the value of the vehicle.

The tax if a vehicle costs less than $44,999 is $3/$100.

The tax if a vehicle costs more than $45,000 is a lump sum of $1,350, as well as $3/$100.

Tasmania

Tasmanian stamp duty is dependent on the value of the vehicle.

If the purchase price is <$600: a $20 tax is payable
If the purchase price is $601 - $35,000, $3/$100 is payable.
For vehicles costing $35,001 - $40,000, tax is calculated as $11,000 for every $100 above $35,000, plus a lump sum of $1050.
Vehicles costing $40,001 will be taxed at $4/$100 of the sale price.

Western Australia

Stamp duty calculations are based on "dutiable value". This is usually considered to be a "reasonable price" for a used car, or the listed price for a new vehicle.

Up to $25,000: $2.75/$100.

$25,000 - $50,000: Stamp duty is calculated using this equation: 2.75% + ((dutiable value – 25,000)/6,666.66)

>$50,000: $6.50/$100.

Australian Capital Territory

ACT calculates stamp duty based on the vehicle's price, as well as its "green rating".

Drivers that purchase vehicles with an A green rating (the most environmentally friendly), don't need to pay stamp duty. The tariffs for B, C and D-rated vehicles are given below.

Vehicles costing <$45,000

B green rating: $1/$100
C green rating: $3/$100
D green rating: $4/$100

Vehicles costing >$45,000

B green rating: $2/$100, plus a lump sum of $450
C green rating: $5/$100, plus a lump sum of $1,350
D green rating: $6/$100, plus a lump sum of $1,800

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Jordan Ballard

Jordan Ballard

Automotive Content Editor

Jordan is a car finance and automotive industry specialist at Cartopia. With over 20 years of experience with frontline and management roles in sales, finance and other areas, Jordan has an incredible understanding of the automotive industry. As Automotive Content Editor, Jordan loves sharing his passion for cars with the Cartopia audience.