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  • Basic method for heavy vehicles

    You can use the basic method for heavy vehicles to calculate fuel tax credits for diesel used in heavy vehicles if you claim less than $10,000 each year.

    The method makes it easier to work out on and off public road use. The rate for travel off public roads is higher than on public roads. This means you will get more fuel tax credits if you calculate off public road use correctly.

    Examples of travel off public roads includes heavy vehicle use in warehouses, depots or car parks, where you may be idling, loading or unloading your vehicle.

    You can use this method for diesel acquired on or after 1 October 2020. You cannot use another method for calculating fuel used for travel on and off public roads if you use this method.

    On this page:

    See also:

    • PCG 2021/2 Fuel tax credits – basic method for heavy vehicles

    Step 1: Calculate litres of diesel used on public roads

    Calculate your litres of diesel used on public roads using this formula:

    • Kilometres travelled on public roads × diesel consumption rate

    Kilometres travelled on public roads

    When working out your kilometres travelled on public roads, you can use either the:

    • derived number of kilometres travelled
    • actual number of kilometres travelled.

    Work out the derived number of kilometres travelled on public roads by multiplying your total kilometres travelled by 98.4%. If you use derived number of kilometres, you need to keep records that show your total kilometres travelled, such as logbooks or odometer readings.

    If you use your actual number of kilometres travelled on public roads, you need to keep records that show the distance you've travelled from your starting destination to your end destination.

    See also:

    Diesel consumption rates

    Use the following tables to find your diesel consumption rate.

    Table 1 – Diesel consumption rates for rigid trucks

    Vehicle classification by gross weight

    Accepted litres per km

    > 4.5 tonnes and ≤ 12 tonnes

    0.18


    ˃12 tonnes and ≤ 16.5 tonnes

    0.23


    ˃16.5 tonnes and ≤ 24 tonnes

    0.28

    ˃24 tonnes and ≤ 30 tonnes

    0.32

    ˃30 tonnes

    0.35

    You can find the diesel consumption rates for articulated combinations in the Practical Compliance Guideline.

    When working out step 1, you may use your vehicle’s engine diagnostic reports of ‘driving fuel’ economy, instead of our diesel consumption rates.

    See also:

    Step 2: Calculate litres of diesel used off public roads

    Calculate your litres of diesel used off public roads using this formula:

    Total litres of eligible diesel – litres of diesel used on public roads (worked out at step 1).

    See also:

    Step 3: Calculate your fuel tax credits for the tax period

    Calculate your fuel tax credit claim using this formula:

    Litres of diesel used on public roads (from step 1) × on public road rate
    +
    Litres of diesel used off public roads (from step 2) × all other business uses rate

    You can find the on public road and all other business uses rates at Rates – business. Fuel tax credit rates change regularly, so it's important you check you are using the right rate.

    See also:

    Example of basic method for heavy vehicles

    Jim drives a rigid truck which carries an average of 32 tonnes of loose materials. In the December 2020 quarter tax period, Jim acquired a total of 11,430 litres of diesel. Over this period, Jim travelled a total of 32,000 kilometres. Jim's daily job includes vehicle use in warehouses, depots or when he's loading and unloading loose materials from his truck.

    Example 1: Not calculating off public road use

    Jim has difficulty calculating his off public road use. He works out his fuel tax credits by multiplying the total litres of diesel used by the on public road rate:

    • Total litres of diesel used × on public road rate
    • 11,430 litres × $0.165
    • Jim's fuel tax credit entitlement he can claim on the BAS for the quarter = $1,885

    Example 2: Calculating off public road use using the basic method for heavy vehicles

    Jim decides to use the basic method for heavy vehicles to work out his fuel tax credit claim.

    Step 1 – Calculate litres of diesel used on public roads

    Jim uses the derived number of kilometres travelled on public roads as he only has records that show the total kilometres he's travelled:

    • Kilometres travelled on public roads × 98.4%
    • 32,000 × 98.4%
    • derived number of kilometres travelled = 31,488

    Jim uses the derived number of kilometres travelled on public roads for step 1:

    • Kilometres travelled on public roads × diesel consumption rate from Table 1
    • 31,488 × 0.35
    • Litres of diesel used on public roads = 11,020.80 litres

    Step 2 – Calculate litres of diesel used off public roads

    • Total litres of eligible diesel − litres of diesel used on public roads (from step 1)
    • 11,430 − 11,020.80
    • Litres of diesel used off public roads = 409.20 litres

    Step 3 – Calculate your fuel tax credits for the tax period

    • Litres of diesel used on public roads (from step 1) × on public road rate from Rates – business
    • 11,020.80 × $0.165 = $1,818.43
    • Litres of diesel used off public roads (from step 2) × all other business uses rate from Rates – business
    • 409.20 litres × $0.423 = $173.09
    • $1,818.43 + $173.09
    • Total fuel tax credits claimed on the BAS = $1,991
    • Jim gets an extra $106 using the basic method for heavy vehicles for the quarter where he claims at label 7D on the BAS.
    End of example
    Last modified: 08 Feb 2021QC 64655