Gvm upgrade

Submitted: Monday, May 16, 2022 at 13:56
ThreadID: 143719 Views:1737 Replies:15 FollowUps:17
If a gvm upgrade is arranged via a product seller such as ARB or Pedders etc, are the customers stuck with those products for life. If we buy for example, Dobinsons or Tough Dog gear down the track, does the gvm certification remain valid?
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Reply By: Dean K3 - Monday, May 16, 2022 at 14:29

Monday, May 16, 2022 at 14:29
Have a word with insurance company see what they say.

Also

Dep t of transport or whatever its called in state responsible for licensing request a determination put into writing
AnswerID: 640552

Reply By: Member - Bigfish - Monday, May 16, 2022 at 16:06

Monday, May 16, 2022 at 16:06
Interesting question. I cant see how it could be legal as the springs and shocks that were part of the original modification have now been replaced with products that will vary in all departments as well as not having been written off by the inspecting engineer.
AnswerID: 640553

Reply By: Jackolux - Monday, May 16, 2022 at 16:27

Monday, May 16, 2022 at 16:27
I have had a couple of vehicles with GVM upgrades my Y62 was done just last week , my understanding is for it to remain compliant is you can not use different components , you would need to get a Engineer to sign off on any changes .
AnswerID: 640554

Reply By: Member - Peter56 - Monday, May 16, 2022 at 17:29

Monday, May 16, 2022 at 17:29
I've emailed club 4x4 who is my insurer, and their general comment was that I can use whatever parts I like so long as the car maintains a roadworthy condition they are fine with it.
Next step is to talk to Transport Dept.
AnswerID: 640555

Follow Up By: Peter_n_Margaret - Monday, May 16, 2022 at 18:12

Monday, May 16, 2022 at 18:12
Insurance "double speak"?
Of course, if you use parts that are of a lower standard than those approved it will not be in "roadworthy condition" and if they are "different" only an RTA approved engineer can determine if they are of a satisfactory standard, or not.
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Peter
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Follow Up By: Member - Cuppa - Monday, May 16, 2022 at 18:12

Monday, May 16, 2022 at 18:12
But in the event of an accident/claim - the issue is when is a roadworthy vehicle not roadworthy? Especially in states where annual roadworthies are not required.
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Follow Up By: Member - Bigfish - Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 06:23

Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 06:23
The modification is only given a tick of approval by an engineer. An insurance company wouldnt have a clue about changing a shock absorber for another...they would say thats fine as long as it is roadworthy. Swapping a shockie to a modded car with a specifc mod would cancel the mod and its GVM capabilities.
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Reply By: Member - Cuppa - Monday, May 16, 2022 at 18:08

Monday, May 16, 2022 at 18:08
It is a very good question, the answer to which could affect anyone with a GVM upgrade. What would happen if someone travelling broke a component which was part of the GVM upgrade (spring, shock or whatever) & was only able to get another company's parts which were claimed to be equivalent, in order to keep travelling? My understanding is that the legal approval is for the specific manufacturers parts, but the problem could be that these are not always available in a timely manner, especially in more remote areas.

I'm guessing that this may be an 'elephant in the room' question which the authorities will be unable to provide useable answers to, leaving the onus of 'proof of suitability for purpose ' on vehicle owners.
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Follow Up By: Peter_n_Margaret - Monday, May 16, 2022 at 18:22

Monday, May 16, 2022 at 18:22
If an alternate supplier claimed their part was "equivalent" (or better) then I would contend that they are now accepting legal liability for the alternative that they supply.
You might like to get it in writing though?
Cheers,
Peter
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Reply By: Kazza055 - Monday, May 16, 2022 at 19:19

Monday, May 16, 2022 at 19:19
So what happens if you change your rims and fit a different brand of tyres?

I would think if they are equivalent they would be fine.
AnswerID: 640558

Follow Up By: Peter_n_Margaret - Monday, May 16, 2022 at 19:38

Monday, May 16, 2022 at 19:38
Rims and tyres are fully documented items.
Cheers,
Peter
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Follow Up By: Member - Bigfish - Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 06:25

Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 06:25
You must also be very careful selecting rims that are also up to a minimum standard for your vehicle. Plenty of cheap chinese rims that would not be acceptable for a heavy 4wd vehicle. Tyres also need correct speed and load rating.
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Reply By: Michael H9 - Monday, May 16, 2022 at 20:42

Monday, May 16, 2022 at 20:42
I thought there was a problem with after sale GVM upgrades not being necessarily legal in other states. If the upgrade is done before delivery and first rego then all is good. People who know to confirm?
AnswerID: 640559

Follow Up By: Kazza055 - Monday, May 16, 2022 at 22:33

Monday, May 16, 2022 at 22:33
That is right Michael. I had my D-Max GVM upgrade done as part of my purchase back in 2014.

Mine was done by ARB and it is based on the stock standard, straight of the factory floor. This was the very first thing that was done so the engineering is straight forward. ARB supplied a new compliance plate and the GVM upgrade is registered on a national database.

Once you add anything to the car and then have the GVM done, the engineering needs to be for the vehicle with any extras you have added and it is only recognised in the state of registration. If you move to another state you will need to have the engineering re-done for that state.

It is well worth while to get the GVM before registation.
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Follow Up By: Member - Bigfish - Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 06:26

Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 06:26
Maybe buy a vehicle more fit for purpose.
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Follow Up By: Member - peter_mcc - Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 11:30

Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 11:30
As others have said, if it was done after rego it's legal to drive in other states but you can't change the registration to another state without getting it redone. So unless you live in a border region where you are likely to sell to an interstate person or are looking to move interstate yourself it probably isn't an issue.
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Follow Up By: Member - PhilD_NT - Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 13:40

Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 13:40
Bigfish, define "fit for purpose"?

I have a GVM upgrade done to my PX1 Ranger and I didn't need the GCM increase as well as with our van we're comfortably below GCM, not that it could have happened in the NT anyway back then.

In my experience there's more to a GVM increase than just carrying more load, or a possible GCM increase for a bigger van. There's also the transformation of the vehicle itself.

All vehicles basically come off the production line as a compromise to suit and average market. Comfort becomes more orientated to city use even though those same vehicles are marketed for more extreme use. With our Ranger the stock suspension may suit a lot of buyers but personally I found that it was too soft, wallowing, uneven ride height and diving under braking. Even with a load well under it's rating the rear leaf springs were almost flat, no arch, let alone loaded for touring and a 260kg ball weight. All within Factory limits.

So if this is a case of unfit for purpose then what are the alternatives? I could go to an LC200/300 or the RAM 1500 and its equivalent's but taking a good look at them they fall short as their payload capacity without a GVM increase is less than our Ranger. Although they can actually tow the rated 3500kg it's when you take off the probable 350kg ball weight that they are really likely to be just as illegal when towing. Going to an even bigger tow vehicle is out of the question for most users.

As to our Ranger with a GVM upgrade, it's transformed the vehicle as it now has a level ride height left to right, far less diving under braking and far more stable on the road with undulations, cross winds or passing road-trains etc. The only compromise is the ride height increase and ride harshness, but both are a non issue to us. I did for a period try just an extra leaf in the rear and Bilstein shocks all round but that just exposed more the front spring softness when not hitched to the caravan. A properly matched GVM kit does wonders, in my experiences.

These vehicle types are marketed as off-road capable and for caravan towing but in their standard form they aren't really capable of the wide customer usage that they are sold for. In fact you can option them with GVM upgrades at point of sale so that's an admission that these modifications are Manufacturer approved for "better fit for purpose".
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Follow Up By: Kazza055 - Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 13:53

Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 13:53
There is nothing wrong with my vehicle and it is completely fit for purpose. It was just that I wanted a bit more payload on the D-Max and because our van is only 2500kg I had plenty to spare and in fact I am 500kg under my GCM.
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Follow Up By: Poppygrumps - Wednesday, May 18, 2022 at 06:19

Wednesday, May 18, 2022 at 06:19
I had a Pedders GVM upgrade done in the ACT in 2018 on a 2010 Hilux and last month moved to Qld and was told as long as the Hilux had the correct compliance plate there was no problem.
Rego inspection done by NRMA/Mycar and Hilux is now registered in Qld.
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Reply By: Member - McLaren3030 - Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 08:52

Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 08:52
It is my understanding that a GVM upgrade is based on an accredited SSM Certificate authorised by the relevant state or federal transport authority, using components detailed in their specifications. Any deviation from the certified components would make the upgrade issued under that certificate null and void. The upgrade would then need recertification. I doubt if an engineer would sign off on it, unless the entire upgrade was replaced with components from a single supplier, that were specified in the SSM Certificate.

It is my understanding that a GVM/GCM upgrade issued in another state or territory whether done pre or post first registration is legal to drive in any other state or territory in Australia. It is just not able to be re-registered in some states or territories if not done pre first registration. Of course for confirmation, you would need to check with your relevant state transport authority.

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Reply By: Bob Y. - Qld - Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 09:08

Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 09:08
I had a GVM upgrade done under SSM, to my 2015 LC ute. As I found out later, the rear springs fitted were 400kg constants, which sagged after some trips. Then. replaced these springs with 600kg constants & they handle the load well, both towing & on remote desert trips.
Also replaced all shocks with large units from same brand as the original upgrade. Might be a bit naughty but I’d say it’s an upgrade to an upgrade!

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Follow Up By: Member - John - Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 16:42

Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 16:42
Bob, maybe an upgrade to an upgrade, but not legal. I doubt that constable plod would ever be able to pick the difference though
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Reply By: Phil G - Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 19:59

Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 19:59
When I did an upgrade to a 200series back in 2018, Lovells were very specific in telling me that alterations to the shocks and springs would invalidate the upgrade and the capacities would revert to the factory GVM.
AnswerID: 640573

Follow Up By: Member - Moya - Sunday, May 22, 2022 at 18:19

Sunday, May 22, 2022 at 18:19
I have the ARB 4015kg GVM upgrade on my LC200. For this to remain valid the factory wheels must be on and standard tyre size that is on the placard. The engineer made a point saying plenty have failed their inspection due to Aftermarket wheels. This is because when the GVM kit was tested it was done with OEM wheels and standard sized tyres.
There is no point paying the dollars for the GVM upgrade then modifying something that makes it invalid.

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Reply By: Member - Peter56 - Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 21:17

Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 21:17
My concern is that if we are in a remote location and the availability of parts is limited, what are our options for a legal and insured vehicle.
I have written to Pedders but no response so far.
My gut feel and that's all it is, is that so long as the parts we use are capable of carrying the weight we should be right.
Why are these things so complicated.
AnswerID: 640575

Follow Up By: AlbyNSW - Wednesday, May 18, 2022 at 08:05

Wednesday, May 18, 2022 at 08:05
Because Pedders or whoever you use are certifying their product to perform to the new certification, they know nothing about whatever other product you choose to fit so why would they put their arse on the line to say it is ok? You need to get another engineer to say it is ok.

I just purchased a new 79 and had a Lovell’s GVM upgrade pre-registration, I then had the rear wheel track correction done and I had an engineer modify that certification to include the changes.

It all amounts to nothing until the lawyers get involved and minor technical details like this are a get out of jail card for some and potentially a go to jail for someone else.
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Follow Up By: Kenell - Wednesday, May 18, 2022 at 08:29

Wednesday, May 18, 2022 at 08:29
Peter56, any emergency or temporary repairs are unlikely to impact your insurance. The roadworthiness or otherwise of a vehicle doesn't effect its insurance directly. The unroadworthiness of a vehicle involved in an accident has to be the primary cause of the accident before an insurer can rely on its policy exclusion. The fact that it didn't comply with an engineering certificate wouldn't be enough.

If it was me I would ensure the emergency replacement was at least capable of doing the job then I would make arrangements for the engineered replacement to be sent to me at a point somewhere down the track where it could replace the temporary one.

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Reply By: Member - Peter56 - Wednesday, May 18, 2022 at 09:02

Wednesday, May 18, 2022 at 09:02
Thanks everyone. I doubt there are too many vehicles out there where after a few years following getting a product manufacturer certified gvm upgrade, shockies and springs have not been replaced with different manufacturers parts.
Independent certification, non product manufacturer certification, may be the best option.
AnswerID: 640581

Reply By: Nifty1 - Wednesday, May 18, 2022 at 09:06

Wednesday, May 18, 2022 at 09:06
GVM upgrades sure highlight some anomalies, don’t they? My cab-chassis Hilux has been registered 4 times in 3 states over 13 years, always as a Ute. In planning a GVM upgrade in Vic I am told it is actually a Camper and must be registered as such before an upgrade can be done, and that requires a VASS engineering assessment and report (vehicle assessment signatory scheme). I’m guessing that will be $500 to start.
GVM upgrades from various companies use the original Hilux axles too, re-specifying them from typically 1300/1600 to 1500/1800 or more - no actual change to the axles. Upgrades are expensive, but the financial and emotional ramifications if the worst should happen don’t bear thinking about.
AnswerID: 640582

Follow Up By: Member - McLaren3030 - Wednesday, May 18, 2022 at 10:05

Wednesday, May 18, 2022 at 10:05
Hi Nifty,

Unless you have a “Camper conversion” on the back of the Hilux, I don’t see how it can be classed as a “Camper”.

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Reply By: Member - Soft-Roader - Tuesday, May 24, 2022 at 20:51

Tuesday, May 24, 2022 at 20:51
To be perfectly legit, as others have said - you need to get your wheels/ tyres/ springs as you want them, and then get the GVM upgrade (if you go the Engineering path). For me, that's why it's the last on the list for me (getting mine done next week).

If you go a standard 'kit', as Pedders offers on my 4x4, you're limited to what they tested it with. Likely OEM wheels and tyres. I have kept my wheels, but not the tyres.

The negative of going the Engineered route (bespoke) is the cost. The benefit is you get your rig as you want it (tyres, wheels, load distribution etc). But, even then, if you deviate from what was tested on the papers you're on your own.
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Reply By: Member - Richard The Explorer - Monday, May 30, 2022 at 12:26

Monday, May 30, 2022 at 12:26
Yes, you have to stay with the components the GVM manufacturer uses.

If you don't your vehicle will be non-compliant and illegal, you can not even legally fit factory components back on without getting it reengineered.

Hence why I went down the road of private engineering.
AnswerID: 640712

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