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Unread 23rd November 2014, 12:55 AM
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kiwifoz kiwifoz is offline
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Default New Zealand Lift, Tyre and Bullbar Legality

In New Zealand, we have fairly restrictive legislation as to what you can do to your vehicle to modify it for offroad usage.
Because the Forester (and Outback) are car-based vehicles, there are very limited options available without requiring a certification.
This thread shall be written for the SG5 Forester, as that's what I own and have researched.

In NZ, tyres must "have an outer circumference that is no more than 5% greater than OE" - which rules out 215/70r16s or 215/75r15s.

There is nothing that stops the fitment of AT or MT type tyres however, but if snow/ice tyres are used the minimum legal tread depth is 4mm not 1.5mm and they must be fitted to all wheels in contact with the road.
Source: http://vehicleinspection.nzta.govt.n...eels#table1011

In NZ, only a spring lift of less than 5cm (2") is legal. No body lift whatsoever is legal without certification, which also precludes the fitment of 'strut spacers' which fall under the body lift rules.

ANY form of aftermarket "coilover" adjustable type suspension requires certification.

If a body lift is undertaken, the steering shaft cannot be extended by welding unless undertaken by an appropriately qualified person. Crush tubes and boxing, as well as tying some blocks together, will almost certainly be necessary for a certificate to be issued.

In NZ, the Forester SG is classified as a class MC vehicle (although this is probably debateable), placing it in the 'Offroad vehicle' category and making the fitment of bullbars legal. "As with Class MA vehicles, bullbars are only allowed if the vehicle has been crash tested and has met the requirements of the relevant frontal impact standard with the specific bullbar already fitted. You'll need to get this confirmed by the vehicle manufacturer."
SO basically it's going to bloody hard to satisfy that requirement, even with something like a Subaxtreme bar.

Unfortunately for an SF owner, the lower ground clearance/reduced angles class it as an MA or 'road' vehicle, making the fitment of bullbars difficult - unless you get a base-model version with no airbags (but even then this is questionable as the relevant legislation also states "you can't fit a bullbar to a vehicle if the bullbar would adversely affect the performance of any frontal impact protection features (eg airbags or crumple zones)." and the crumple zone would most likely be deemed as 'affected').

Hope this helps, or at least makes for an interesting read.
RIP 2002 Forester, 2009 GV
1997 Nissan Terrano
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Unread 23rd November 2014, 01:05 AM
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Ratbag Ratbag is offline
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That's some good research there, KF.

I haven't looked at the sources, but you have certainly explained things clearly.

Over here, the legislation and plethora of (sometimes conflicting) regulations and standards make it all but impossible to adequately assess what the position is with regard to most things.

My touchstone is whether my comprehensive insurer is OK with it, and puts it in writing on the policy document (which they send me a new copy of).
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Unread 22nd April 2015, 06:55 AM
legover legover is offline
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Hey KF, I'm just wondering if the BG Outbacks are classed as MC vehicles? I cant find any specs regarding approach, breakaway, departure angles but surely it fits the requirements?

Also, seeing as a GC-GF Impreza would not be classed as MC, could I lift it on BG OB or SF-SG foz running gear, and cert it as MC class?

Basing my questions off this link here

AFAIC if the glove fits.....

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Unread Today, 05:20 AM
ABFoz ABFoz is offline
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Sorry for reviving an old thread.

I noticed that my SG is classified as MA but the SH is classified as MC. Both pass the requirements of MC except for the approach angle which need to be at least 28 degrees. My Forester as 22 degrees from stock while the SH has 25 degrees.

I wonder if these classes are subjective during compliance. What if they had been processing a lot of Cross Sport models and when they see another SG, they just assume that they are of the same class?
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Unread Today, 10:48 AM
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NachaLuva NachaLuva is offline
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Originally Posted by ABFoz View Post
I noticed that my SG is classified as MA but the SH is classified as MC.
Do you have a photo of the compliance plate? In Australia, all Foresters & Outbacks are MC class
1" & 2" lift kits; custom lift kits; all models
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