FAQ

Definitions:
Gross Vehicle Mass (GVM)

GVM is the maximum a vehicle can weigh when fully loaded. This includes the vehicle, all of its luggage, fuel, accessories and passengers. It is specified by the vehicle manufacturer on a plate affixed to the vehicle.

Gross Combination Mass (GCM)

GCM is the greatest possible sum of the maximum loaded mass of a motor vehicle, and any vehicles that may be lawfully towed by it at one time. The GCM on a passenger vehicle is not stamped on any compliance plates - it is specified in the owners manual or upon request from the manufacturer to disclose.

Braked Towing Capacity (BTC)

BTC is determined by the vehicle manufacturer and is based on factors such as the design of the vehicle, the vehicle's rear axle load, the capacity of its tyres and the effect the fully loaded trailer will have on the vehicle's stability, durability and general safety.

Tow Ball Weight (TBW)

TBW is the downward force from the a-frame of the caravan/trailer which when connected is applied to the vehicles tow bar.

Aggregate Trailer Mass (ATM)

ATM is the combined weight of the trailer and its full load when it is not coupled to a tow vehicle.

How do I calculate GVM?

GVM for any vehicle is calculated as the total weight of the vehicle while allowing for all fluids of the vehicle with 80kg per passenger. This means that if your new Hilux comes it at 2800kg with a full tank of fuel and no passengers, your a legally over your GVM by 200kg!

How do you build the right set up for my vehicle?

Suspension set up is relative to weight. Don't settle for a one size fits all approach for your vehicle's needs. You CAN get an excellent riding vehicle at an affordable price. Click here to know more about our Ultimate Process. Call us now for a free quote.

Am I over GVM?

Stop the guess work and get your vehicle weighed! Click here

I need my vehicle inspected and engineered, what is the process?

Give us a call to book in your appointment for an initial chat.

I have a custom application, can you build something for me?

Sure. Give us a call and if we can't help then we'll refer you onto somebody who can!

Do you fit accessories?

Yep. Our team are not only certified mechanics but can also set up your Bullbars, Snorkel, RoofRacks and can build your 12V dream. Our approach is meticulous and we pride ourselves in our attention to detail. We can fabricate anything you can dream of and can make it happen. Our fierce independance and our experience of 45 years in the industry means we can source any brand that you have your heart set on.

What do you do other than suspension?

The Ultimate Suspension is your suspension and driveline experts.

I live in another state, can I still get your products?

Yep. Give us a call and we can deliver our great products anywhere around the country - and FAST!

I live overseas, can I still get your products?

Yep. We're sending goods overseas almost every week. So if you have a destination, we can get it there - and FAST!

Has there been a recent change to the law regulating pre-registration GCM upgrades?

There has been no recent change to the law regulating pre-registration vehicle upgrades.

Lovells understands that the longstanding position for many years has been that while the Federal Department does not assess, endorse or approve GCM upgrades, it equally does not restrict or prohibit GCM upgrades. Lovells understands this longstanding position has not changed.

Importantly, this means that:

Vehicles that Lovells has previously modified are legal in all States and Territories.

Lovells is permitted to plate vehicles with gross vehicle mass (GVM) upgrades and towing capacity upgrades under the approved RVD (as stated in Lovells SSM approvals and as noted on current RVDs).

Lovells is permitted to modify GVM/GCM/towing capacity or variants of these modifications in all States and Territories prior to first registration.

What is the position regarding post-registration upgrades?

When a manufacturer modifies a vehicle that has already been registered, this modification is governed by the various State and Territory authorities and their individual Type Approvals or Modification Codes. Put simply, these upgrades are governed by State and Territory law.

Whether a particular type of modification is available post-registration, therefore depends on the position in the State or Territory in question. Some of the States and Territories have recently changed their position in relation to post-registration upgrades.

GCM upgrades post-registration

Lovells understands that the current position in relation to GCM upgrades in each State and Territory is as follows:

NSW, SA and VIC recognise a revised GCM specified by a SSM if endorsed by the inspecting engineering signatory. The signatory must be an endorsed engineer who has access to our Evidence Packages. Endorsed engineers’ contact details are available upon request.

Tasmania recognises a revised GCM specified by a SSM.

Queensland no longer recognises a revised GCM above the GCM nominated by the OEM. However, on 22 January 2020, Queensland TMR released a statement to the industry that “TMR is exploring options for the issue of a new code that deals with GCM increases. TMR is working closely with Industry on this task, and in particular the Australian Automotive Aftermarket Association (AAAA). Whilst TMR’s priority remains on road safety and national consistency, it is optimistic that a technically sound and separate code-based solution for GCM re-rating can be developed”.

WA, ACT and NT no longer recognises a revised GCM above the GCM nominated by the OEM if the vehicle is modified after first registration.

Is the GCM Upgraded and is the ANCAP Rating Affected?

Note that The GCM (Gross Combined Mass) is not noted on our Second Stage of Manufacture RVD (Road Vehicle Descriptor) nor is GCM noted on the Original Equipment Manufacturers RVD. A GCM figure is also not noted on any OE or SSM Federal Compliance plate, however the figure is usually gazetted or published in handbooks, owner’s manuals, sales brochures or specification sheets.

Lovells RVD (Road Vehicle Descriptor) for each SSM IPA (Identification Plate Approval) notes the New Lovells GVM Capacity and the Maximum Braked Towing Capacity. As a Second Stage Manufacturer, Lovells publish a new GCM Capacity for the vehicle, as we accept responsibility for compliance with the ADRs in relation to that vehicle and are issued a compliance plate approval certificate for that vehicle. As a Second Stage Manufacturer, it is Lovells responsibility to document all applicable ADR tests and compile evidence packages for critical vehicle components, handling, stability, thermal dynamics of powertrain and drivetrain, chassis and mechanical connections and thus take responsibility and liability for the GVM upgrade compliance, increased axle capacities, towing capacities and GCM revisions.

We note that Lovells increase and list new Axle Loading Capacities for each vehicle based on stringent test data and FEA evidence.

The Original Equipment maximum braked towing capacity for example on the Toyota Landcruiser LC200 is 3500kg. This doesn’t increase nor decrease when a Lovells GVM Upgrade is fitted, it remains at 3500kg.

The new vehicle GVM becomes 3800kg (LC200) as noted in Lovells SSM (Second Stage of Manufacture for GVM Upgrade)

The factor that comes into play is the ball weight of the towed apparatus. Whatever the ball weight is, must be subtracted from the vehicles GVM and GCM.

Therefore, the vehicle can still tow up to OE 3500kg. If the ball weight is 200kg, the vehicle’s maximum available GVM (with a Lovells GVM Upgrade kit fitted) will now be 3600kg for the LC200.

Whereas, when a Lovells 4,000kg BTC Upgrade is fitted, the vehicle can then tow up to 4000kg. Yet, if the ball weight remains at 200kg, the vehicle’s maximum available GVM (with a Lovells GVM Upgrade kit fitted) will still be 3600kg for the LC200).

Pre-registration GCM upgrades

A vehicle’s GCM is first nominated by the original manufacturer (OEM).

There are various organisations, known in the industry as ‘second stage manufacturers’ (SSMs), that are frequently engaged to upgrade vehicle capacity, prior to first registration. Some SSMs, like Lovells, update the GCM to reflect the change in capacity as a result of the upgrade.

Lovells believes that when there has been an upgrade to vehicle capacity pre-registration, it is important for any change to the vehicle’s GCM that has resulted from the upgrade to be noted. Lovells believes this is important for numerous reasons, including for accuracy and safety.

Lovells understands that an updated GCM may be specified by a manufacturer and believes it is good practice for manufacturers to do so.

Is the GVM and BTC Upgrade legal in all States and Territories?

Yes. Rest assured, The Federal Dept of Transport have the final say on all Second Stage Manufacturers Approvals and we cover everything and more as required by the ADRs.


BACKED BY THE ULTIMATE SERVICE

  • Since 1975 means more people trust us with their investment
  • The Ultimate Suspension exports across the globe and is a trusted name in the armoured vehicle industry
  • Independent operator with no product line lock in - we chose and manufacture only the best
  • 24 Month / UNLIMITED km Nationwide Warranty on Ultimate Shock Absorbers.
  • LIFETIME Warranty on all Springs.
  • ASE Certified Technicians
  • Driveline and Suspension Specialists
  • Full support and excellent after sales service

Call to speak to one of helpful staff.

Key Advantages

Design the Ultimate Suspension for your 4WD

With over 45 years of experience The Ultimate Suspension exports across the globe and is arguably the most trusted name in suspension and vehicle dynamics upgrades.

Tow with Ultimate Safety & Confidence

Experience the best in vehicle dynamics and safety while towing with a GVM and DBA brake upgrade package designed specifically to suit your exact requirements. Our service costs no more and is immeasurably better than our competition.

Ultimate GVM & Tow Capacity Upgrades

As a Lovells, Pedders, and JMACX/AEV Authorised Facility experience the best in vehicle dynamics and safety while towing with federally certified pre or post registration GVM or BTC upgrade solution.

Military & Export Suspension Systems

The Ultimate Suspension is the trusted name in the armoured vehicle industry, supplying the Australian Defence Force, local government agencies, international armoured vehicle manufacturers and UN peacekeeping forces.

Join over 5000 other customers

What Our Clients Say

Jack F.
(2006 Nissan Pathfinder)
Fantastic, I'm totally blown away by Testimonial Generator. more
Rick E
(2006 Nissan Pathfinder)
Ultimate Suspension saved my business. This is simply unbelievable! Man, this thing is getting better and better as I learn more about it. more
Vivie X
(2006 Nissan Pathfinder)
Ultimate Suspension was worth a fortune to my company. I made back the purchase price in just 48 hours! Thanks Ultimate Suspension! more
Nona D
(2006 Nissan Pathfinder)
Definitely worth the investment. more
Michael & Joanne McCulkin
(Mitsubishi Canter All Terrain Warrior 4WD Coach)

Tri State Safaris operates 4WD tours Australia wide in our Mitsubishi Canter All Terrain Warrior 4WD coach. The vehicle is only 12 months old but has always been in need of a better ride. We ... more

Michael Hall
(2006 Nissan Pathfinder)
Being dissatisfied with the very rigid ride from the original suspension on my 2006 Nissan Pathfinder, and following discussions with yourselves, I decided to have the suspension changed to The Ultimate Suspension Gas Shock Absorber System. ... more
Charlie C
(BT-50)

These guys are absolutely fantastic to go to. I am really glad that I found them. Ken and his team spent two hours with me when I first turned up for a quote, making ... more

Ali Raza H
(Hilux)

I am from Pakistan. I have had four suspensions from ULTIMATE and love the ride on all four hiluxs.

more
Michael G
(Triton)

five stars, best improvement for my Triton. Got the lift and suspension upgrade 5 years ago and a rebuild this year. Car drives much better now.

more
Russell G
(4WD)

I am so happy with my Ultimate Suspension, I wouldn't buy anything else in the future. Quality products, great service, not one issue with my lift kit which has now done 150000 Kms, car still ... more

Rod C
(VW Amarok)

I had extensive suspension and other 4WD accessories supplied and fitted to an Amarok to accommodate a Trayon camper and outback travel. The advice provided was top class, the products supplied were excellent and ... more

Verity S
(Pajero Sport GVM)

Friendly, experienced and knowledgable staff. Did exactly what was needed, no hidden extras. Very happy and loved the enthusiasm of the staff who clearly take pride in the service they offer.

more

Not convinced?

Get in touch and experience The Ultimate difference.

Call Now


Follow us on instagram