9309.0.55.003 - Microdata: Census of Motor Vehicles, Australia, 2014 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 28/08/2014   
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For each state and territory, the number of vehicles on register by type of vehicle (passenger vehicles, campervans, light commercial vehicles, rigid trucks, articulated trucks, non-freight carrying trucks, buses and motor cycles), year of manufacture, make, gross vehicle mass and fuel type.


The 2014 MVC includes all motor vehicles that are registered with an Australian state or territory motor vehicle authority for unrestricted use on public roads as at the census date, 31 January.

Vehicles whose registration has lapsed up to 30 days prior to the MVC snapshot date are deemed to be in scope. This is because payments may be processed by motor vehicle registries within this time and the vehicle treated as being continuously registered.


The scope of the MVC excludes:

    recreational vehicles such as trail bikes, quad bikes, and sand dune buggies intended for off-road use;

    veteran and vintage vehicles registered for restricted use only;

    consular vehicles; and

    vehicles registered by the defence forces.


Coverage currently extends to data collected by all 8 Australian states and territories.

Data provided to the ABS includes road-registered caravans, trailers, tractors, plant and equipment. These particular vehicle types are out of scope and hence are not included in the Motor Vehicle Census publication, but the microdata is available in Survey TableBuilder.

Notes on Scope and Coverage

In Victoria and Queensland, recreational vehicles such as trail bikes, quad bikes, and sand dune buggies are required to be registered. These are included in the MVC as these vehicles are not able to be discretely identified and removed. In these states, genuine trail bikes are included in motorcycles while other off-road vehicles could be included in various vehicle types depending on how the MVR coded the body type.

Veteran and vintage vehicles with restricted use are included in the count of registered vehicles for New South Wales as there are no distinguishing identifiers in the data supplied by the MVR to enable them to be extracted from the count. Data on most Victorian veteran and vintage vehicles are excluded from the files loaded by the ABS, and hence do not appear in the microdata.


Data are supplied by the 8 state and territory Motor Vehicle Registries based on a snapshot of their vehicle registrations taken as close as possible to 31 January.

All records are compared to previous MVC data for vehicles that match (on-going registrations) and details are updated for these vehicles where applicable. The unmatched records (new vehicle registrations) undergo editing of individual data items. The editing of on-going registrations is limited as these records have been edited in previous years.

Aggregate data is checked across time, states and vehicle types to ensure basic integrity.

Data supplied by the MVRs is then transformed into a consistent format for use in production of the Motor Vehicle Census.


All but one state had supplied snapshots which were taken by 6 February 2014, with the remaining state supplying data taken on 17 February.

One of the primary uses of the MVC is as a frame for the Survey of Motor Vehicle Use (SMVU). Editing of the data is focused on maximising data quality to the level required for the SMVU. The size of the fleet (over 17 million vehicles) dictates that quality assurance of each record is not possible. Therefore, while the data are made available at a detailed level, the ABS is unable to guarantee that it is necessarily sufficient for all purposes for which it may be used.

There is also variation in the standard and detail of reporting from the Motor Vehicle Registries, and care should be taken when comparing data across jurisdictions.

The information provided to the ABS and included in the estimates may be revised or corrected. Where corrections are made to original data they will be identified by the annotation (r) revised.

If analysis of regional data based on postcodes is being undertaken, the following considerations need to be taken into account:

    there are some instances where the postcode of the vehicle owner is in a different state or territory from that in which the vehicle is registered. For example, the postcode of the owner of the vehicle could be in New South Wales, yet the vehicle could be registered in Queensland;

    some official postcodes (PO boxes, competition postcodes) do not correspond to residential areas;

    some postcodes could be invalid.