shadow image

How much does it cost to Transport a Car?

When it comes to car transport, one of the first questions almost everyone asks is “How much does it cost to transport a car?”.

It’s often one of the earlier questions many people have when they are looking for car carriers to ship their car.

In Australia, the cost for transporting within the same metropolitan area is around $120. For longer distances (such as to regional areas or if transporting interstate), the cost can come down to below 40 cents per kilometre.

Here’s the thing…

When you get a car transport quote, it is not an arbitrary number picked at random.

Unlike many other products and services, the cost of shipping a car can vary quite a bit – even from one day to the next.

Factors Affecting Vehicle Transport Costs

Car transport costs depend on several variables that are in a constant state of flux.

Here’s 7 factors common factors that frequently determine how much it really does cost to transport a car.

1. The type of vehicle is being shipped affects the cost

Bigger vehicles like trucks, SUVs, 4WDs and vans are more expensive to transport than sedans or compacts. Also, modifications to suspension (like being lowered or lifted) or vehicles with oversized tyres can also impact the cost of car transport.

Similarly, if you’re considering prestige or luxury vehicle transport, you will most likely want to consider an “enclosed” option which will provide that extra protection during transport.

Basically, the larger the vehicle, the higher the price to transport it.

2. The distance the vehicle is being transported affects how much you’ll pay

As you can probably guess, distance plays a major role in the cost to ship your vehicle.

It shouldn’t take a degree in astrophysics to know that transporting a car from Perth to Sydney is likely to cost a lot more than transporting a car from Adelaide to Melbourne.

Generally, the further the distance the car is to be transported, the higher the car transport cost.

As a guide, in Australia, the cost for transporting within the same metropolitan area is around $120. For longer distances (such as. to regional areas or if transporting interstate), the cost can come down to below 40 cents per kilometre.

3. Specific pickup and delivery locations may affect the price

Is it in a rural, out of the way area or in a major capital city or easily accessed urban town centre?

While not a major factor, if the pickup area or destination points are not on heavily traveled routes or they are in hard to reach areas off the main highways, it can impact the overall vehicle transport cost.

4. Door-to-Door or Depot-to-Depot delivery impacts costs

Depot-to-Depot is often less expensive than a door-to-door option. Although, if your car is shipped depot-to-depot, there may be vehicle storage fees that accumulate each day the vehicle is kept in the depot yard.

Also, a depot may be several hundred kilometres away from you, which can add travel costs for you to get to the closest depot.

5. Car transport prices are most certainly impacted by the price of fuel

Fuel prices seem to be on a roller-coaster lately and vary from region to region.

Fortunately, the Carbon Tax has now been removed in Australia following Federal Parliament passing legislation to repeal it from 1 July 2014.

However, fuel costs are possibly the biggest variable expense associated with auto transport.

6. Non-running and non-drivable vehicles cost more to transport

If the vehicle is inoperable or not drivable, it may increase the transport quote if the transport company needs special equipment or a tow truck to get the vehicle on and off the car carrier’s trailer.

Many car transport companies won’t transport non-drivable vehicles but there are some exceptions.

It’s important that, when requesting a quote, you tell the company if your vehicle is non-drivable. This will avoid potentially embarrassing and complicated situations that could arise were you to book your vehicle in only to discover that our drivers can’t get your car on the truck.

  • Start your Quote

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

7. Express delivery of a vehicle impacts the cost

All companies offer standard rates on their quotes and some offer an express car delivery option.

If you can afford to be without your car for a little longer and have planned ahead, the less expensive standard delivery option would be the way to go.

Many car transport company’s standard delivery times range between “same day delivery” and 15 (or more) days depending on distance, quarantine inspection checks and sometimes, weather conditions along the way.

Tips to help save car transport costs

The best way to save money when you ship your car is to compare prices from several car shipping companies. Get multiple quotes from multiple companies.

Don’t necessarily go with the cheapest quote you find. There are numerous reasons why going with the cheapest quote is often a bad idea.

Your car is a valuable asset and integral part of your daily life, and finding a company you can trust to transport your vehicle safely and quickly for a reasonable price is an important decision.

Do some research on car transport companies, request quotes and see what other people say about the auto transport companies you are considering to transport your vehicle.

Certainly, if you’re just shopping around at this stage, request some quotes here and see what our favourite car transport companies are willing to offer.