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Five Reasons Why Personal Imports Are Bad For Our Industry | News

Changes to the Motor Vehicle Standards Act will allow you to bypass a dealership and import your own new or near-new bike from 2018. For many it was the long-awaited up yours to Australia’s often comparatively higher prices and less choice, a change that all of a sudden made Australia a little less remote and moved us closer to the big wide world of, well, anything you want.

Now the dust is beginning to settle on the kerfuffle which sent automotive industry into a tizz, it’s clear there are a few flaws in the plan. Flaws that in the long-term have the ability to hit Australian motorcycle riders where it hurts.

1. Protection

Though often forgotten, Australian Consumer Law has got your back. Purchase a new or near-new motorcycle from an Australian dealership and whether you know it or not, tough consumer protection regulations ensure if something goes wrong, it’ll get sorted out. Sure, there may be some to-ing and fro-ing and forms and red tape, but there’s a raft of avenues you can take which will generally lead to some sort of resolution. Import your own and you’re on your Pat Malone.

2. Safe and sound

To support and service both their products and customers as a result of our high level of consumer protection, brands have had to make substantial investments in Australia by way of dealerships, workshops, technology and training. This means a few things; your bike will generally be serviced and repaired to a high standard, you’ll be made aware of safety recalls before you’re wedged in someone else’s bull-bar and it also makes for a healthy and robust industry that’s in position to bolster the things you love.

3. We’re different

Australia is unique. Our climate, conditions and roads are very different to other countries and, according to the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries, our vehicles need to be specifically engineered for rugged Australian conditions, roads and lifestyles.

4. Price of logistics

It’s all very well you’re allowed to import a vehicle, but have you ever actually tried? It’s not a matter of clicking the buy-it-now button adding freight costs and waiting at the window for the DHL van to arrive. The bureaucratic red-tape is endless, there’s shipping companies, border control and quarantine departments to navigate. It’s what many would call a logistical nightmare. A small percentage of the sheer cost of it is currently included in an Aussie-bought RRP and it’s probably worth every cent.

5. Knowledge

Would you ever purchase a second-hand bike without a background check? Depending on which country you decide to import your low-kilometre six-month-old CBGZX-R from, who’s to say it’s too-good-to-be-true price isn’t exactly that? Fast forward 10 years and Australia’s second-hand market is a jungle of misinformation, achieving little more than hiking up the price of second-hand bikes with Aussie dealership origins.