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First Bikes, Next 4WD's

Discussion in 'Politics, Laws, Government & Insurance' at netrider.net.au started by vic, Sep 13, 2005.

  1. http://www.heraldsun.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,5478,16582788%5E662,00.html

    Plan to boost tax on 4WDs
    Jen Kelly, city editor
    13sep05

    FOUR-wheel-drives would leap in cost by thousands of dollars under a controversial plan to keep the fuel guzzlers out of city streets.



    The House of Representatives environment committee has urged the Federal Government to consider increasing the tariff on 4WDs.

    Only farmers and others with a legitimate need for a 4WD would be spared the price jump under the plan.

    Imported 4WDs attract a 5 per cent tariff while other cars have a 10 per cent tariff, a concession originally intended to help farmers.

    But 4WDs now make up about one in five new cars sold and have become the car of choice for countless city-slickers.

    Environment Victoria executive director Marcus Godinho said 4WDs epitomised all that was bad about driving.

    "These Toorak tractors, which are not only dangerous but highly polluting, are being subsidised by the public," he said.

    "It's a farcical situation considering our current petrol crisis. These gas guzzlers are a luxury none of us can afford at a time of record petrol prices and dwindling oil supplies."

    The price jump for 4WDs is one of 32 recommendations in the committee's Sustainable Cities report, released yesterday.

    By 2010, tariffs for 4WDs will be cut to zero and tariffs for other cars will be reduced to 5 per cent. All car tariffs will be removed by 2015.

    But committee chairman Dr Mal Walsher said it was hoped the price advantage for 4WD buyers could be removed sooner.

    "These cars generally are shaped aerodynamically to take more fuel per kilometre, and that creates more pollution per kilometre," he said.

    "Also they're usually designed in such a way that if you hit someone with the jolly things they have a lot of grief. They're much less safe for pedestrians than, say, sedan cars."

    The plan was slammed by Four Wheel Drive Victoria president Michael Coldham, who said the claims were misleading.

    He said 85 per cent of 4WDs used less fuel and created less pollution than six-cylinder sedans.

    In releasing the committee's report, Dr Walsher also warned Australia needed to urgently recycle more waste water.

    "There is no doubt a number of Australian cities are in imminent danger of running out of water," he said.

    Other recommendations include:

    INCREASING the first homeowner's grant from $7000 to $10,000 for those buying a home with a high energy-efficiency rating.

    INTRODUCING mandatory testing and reporting of emissions of older vehicles at time of sale.

    EDUCATING the public about the benefits, economics and safety of using recycled water.

    Dr Walsher also said fringe benefits tax rules that encouraged car use needed to be changed.

    "What we're doing is encouraging people to be given a company car and drive it as far as they bloody well can and pay less tax, which is not environmentally a very sound thing," he said.
     
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  2. They would reduce emmissions more by not only requiring vehicles to be emissions tested at time of sale but by failing those that didn't pass the emmisions standards current when the vehicle was made, and requiring them to be recified. There are lots of older smoke spewing vehicles out there that should be defected by the police (they'd be better occupied doing that than booking people for having wheels too wide or cars too low).
     
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  3. I find that soooooo amazing.

    Diesel is less poluting to the environment - this is a KNOWN FACT

    My Nissan Patrol, Turbo Diesel gets 10.1litres/100km.... That is better than MOST 6 cylinder cars...

    With regards to being a luxury we can ill afford.... Dont we think it is upto the owner of the vehicle to determine if it is a luxury that WE can afford???? :shock: :? :)

    Fuel usage.... Well, funny that, Diesel is the residue left over from the natural development of normal unleaded... It is the unleaded running short of supply, not diesel. :)

    Sorry, this guy is a complete tool

    Anyway, have a nice day all :) :)
     
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  4. personally i would like to see something come in to getr rid of all the suburban tractors.... or atleast start trying to reduce the number of 4wd. Because personally i know we can't ban them for good as alot of people will actually take them off road a couple of times a year, but there are aso a hell of alot of 4wd that the only dirt they ever see is driving through roadwork (sectiosn of suburban streets being repaired.)
     
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  5. thats the point i think, he wants to make a luxury that you CANT afford :LOL:


    i'm fairly apathetic either way, but i do tend to swing in favor of this a little. much as it sucks for those that need/use a 4WD for something other than a status symbol, i think the less toorak tractors on the road, the better :D

    but again..... what-evvvvvver :roll:
     
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  6. Vic, I understand what is happening here, but the fact seems to be that price (changing tarrifs, etc) does not seem to influence their sales!!! Even a mid-range Korean 4WD costs more than a comparative station wagon-type vehicle, but they are selling by the boatload! Top-line Land Cruisers and Patrols are costing into the 60 - 70 thousand bracket.
    Have a look out the window for 5 minutes and come back and tell me how many cars OLDER than 12 years you saw drive by. Very few? Right! Australia is an affluent country, in the middle of the greatest period of economic stability and prosperity since the 50s. (war on terror and other factors notwithstanding). People can AFFORD to buy big 4WDs and run them, and increasing the price will only have a marginal impat on sales, and the owners of existing units will 'suck it up' while fuel prices are high and keep their vehicles in the expectation of the price going down again.
    So why are people buying them? It's not for the kids; our birth figures are in the negative, and have been for years. Some are for holidays and the retirement trip around Australia. But the majority are for load space and a perceived size promoting safety. (Yeah, I know this has been de-bunked a dozen times, but advertising speaks louder than statistics!!)
    The biggest impact on sales of cigarettes has not been the astronomic escalation in price through increased excise, but the public HEALTH education campaign.
    In the mean time, we are bound for our own protection to side with the 4WD community, because their enemy is our enemy!
     
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  7. Sorry, can't agree with this.
    What is actually well known is that:
    1. Diesels burn fuel far less efficiently than petrol, leading to far higher levels of particulate matter, unburnt fuel etc. coming out the exhausts, all of which is much worse than the CO and CO2 that is the main component of petrol exhausts. Granted, significant advances have been made in diesel technology recently, but these are not being employed widely.
    2. Higher Km per litre does not translate into less pollutants.
    3. Byproducts of diesel include volatile aromatics that are HIGHLY carcinogenic.

    Look, although I don't much care for large 4WDs myself, I am NOT supporting any calls to ban or tax them out of existence. Each to his own, I say, and if somebody happens to make a poor choice (in MY opinion), well that's their business. The freedom to do so is VERY important, even though I hope they will think about what they do. We as motorcyclists know all about people wanting to take our freedoms away.
    I DO think it is fair - more than fair - that people who choose 4WDs should pay the same tariffs as those who choose otherwise. An exception for those who genuinely NEED 4WD for work is also fair. If all you are using it for is transport or recreation, you don't need the rest of us subsidising you.
     
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  8. Diesels represent around 5% of the vehicles on the road, but contribute to around 30% of the photochemical smog.
     
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  9. But aren't we using a different grade of diesel in OZ than they use in Europe? Diesel is going off there!!
     
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  10. Clearly the original purpose of lower taxes on 4wds (to benefit the rural sector) has long since been lost. I can't see any basis to retain it - except for farmers or others who legitimately need a 4wd to earn a living.

    Having said that, the quote from the Environment Victoria chap would make a wonderful exercise for students of clear thinking.

    Name-calling doesn't advance an argument. And if the problem is that sales of 4wds are too high (by some undefined standard), that means they're being bought by everyone - not just the so-called "elites" of Toorak or Sydney's North Shore.

    "Dangerous"? Assessing risk and severity of damage is a matter of some complexity. In accidents with other vehicles, 4wds tend to be safer than a passenger car for their occupants, but because of their mass are more likely to damage other vehicles and their occupants. Relative danger levels can be argued up hill and down dale, but I wonder if this chap would describe any conveyance as "safe"? You can get some nasty grazes falling off a pushbike, after all...

    "Highly polluting"? My X-Trail meets the criteria of a "Low Emission Vehicle", I assume most if not all 4wds meet the applicable passenger car criteria, but if the legislation isn't tight enough for Environment Victoria they can lobby the Federal Government to change it.

    Not all 4wds are petrol. Not all 4wds use excessive amounts of fuel. Clearly people can afford them, or sales would not be so high.

    It is unclear what effect owners swapping their Prados for Commodores would have on the rate at which global oil supplies are being diminished - I suspect negligible. If his concern is with vehicles that use excessive amounts of fuel, why isn't he proposing an increase in fuel tax rates? These already give us a differential tax on vehicles, based exclusively on fuel consumption. More tax = higher prices = a powerful incentive to buy fuel-efficient vehicles.

    God save us from people whose livelihood depends on telling others what to do.
     
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  11. Australian diesel has always had a high sulphur content (up to 5000ppm in the past) but has since been governement regulated to no more than 500ppm. Europe however has recently introduced new regulations reducing the sulphur content of diesel to 50ppm down from the previous regulation of 350ppm. So even with the new regs Australian diesel is still "dirty" by European standards.
     
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  12. jeez, mate, if you enforced that HERE half the posters wouln't have anything to say!!!
     
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  13. And we're getting more sour crude here lately from SE Asian oil fields.

    But this applies to petrol as much as deisel
     
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  14. If the Government has been able to subsidise the cost of new 4wds (which make up around 20% of total vehicle sales) by 5% then surely removing this discount would allow them to instead subsidise the cost of new bikes (which make up 5% of total vehicle sales) by 20%.
     
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  15. "5th Gear" the British TV show had a segment the other night on diesels and it basically concluded that, given extra cost of original purchase and the other factors, it wasn't actually a huge saving to buy and own one (and that's in Europe where the diesel IS cheap and less polluting than here)

    That slight gain is increased if the vehicle is kept for a longer period of time, but, using a diesel Mondeo as an example, it would take 3 and a half years to get to "square" before you would start saving money.
     
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  16. Clearly the Environment Victoria spokesman needs to define clearly what he is talking about here, because WE are now lumping all vehicles with four driven wheels together in the argument. Gromit, you're right about your car's consumption but I don't think your X-Tail receives the 5% tax break that is the original issue here, and neither do many other smaller soft-roaders.
    Perhaps we could simplify the discussion a little by keeping it to the vehicles that are actually going to be affected by this proposal???
     
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  17. I thought the tax break applied to all of them. That's why (for example) Volvo has just stopped importing it's 2wd V70 station wagon - with the tax rates it ends up being thousands of dollars more expensive than a similarly-equipped 4wd V70XC.
     
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  18. I have no reason to believe 4WDs shouldn't be considered as an acceptable choice of car. People can drive what they want, but if there's no reason why they should attract a lower tarrif than other cars, what's the problem? If people want one, they can still buy one. It just won't be at a comparitively discounted price.
     
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  19. Yeah, but it is based upon ctiteria such as ride height, etc., Volvo increased the ride height of the 4WD version so it could qualify. However I do not have a definitive list of which vehicles qualify and which don't, so I'll just shut up.
     
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