John Brett

John is a professional engineer with 50 years experience.

John has designed and built many cars, trucks, and vehicle assembly facilities.

John has worked on design of roads, bridges, cranes, transmission towers, and buildings, and operation, maintenance and upgrade of hydro and gas turbine power stations.

John was a LVV Certifier for 13 years. John has long been a whistle-blower, expressing the view that the LVV system is dangerously deficient. John's authority was revoked in December 2012.

John rides a 1992 Yamaha FJ1200ABS, and is also a keen road and off road cyclist.


“The LVVTA has brought it to my attention that statements I have made in relation to it and its employees may have been perceived as defamatory.

I sincerely regret that and apologise for any harm caused. I have taken down the statements identified by the LVVTA of concern to it.

I have strong views about the low volume vehicle certification process and intend in the future to direct my energies into the public inquiry now being held in relation to it.”

John Brett 7th October 2015


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Low Volume Vehicle Certification review- update from NZTA 31 August 2015

In an email received from the is this content:

In our last email update, we told you about a number of changes we were working on to improve the Low Volume Vehicle (LVV) system. Those changes have now been completed and further information about them follows. This update also contains information about work underway to provide alternative pathways to LVV certification for lower-risk modifications. Please find following some questions and answers – we’ve also added these to our website so the latest information is available to everyone.

We’ll contact you soon with further updates about the review. We’ll only contact you when we have something new to say, and anticipate this won’t be for a few weeks.

What has happened since the last update?

Since we last updated you in May 2016, we have finalised the following actions:

Improving certifier consistency:
• The Low Volume Vehicle Technical Association (LVVTA) has completed an update of all standards so there is a single, up-to-date source of information for both certifiers and modifiers. As a result, certifiers will need to rely less on instructions issued via LVVTA information sheets, and customers will find it easier to locate information on requirements and will experience more consistent interpretation and application of standards by certifiers. The latest versions of all standards are available in the Documents section of the LVVTA’s website.
• Although there will always be a level of interpretation and individual decision-making exercised by certifiers, it’s important that certifiers can see where their decision-making may be out of step with other certifiers. To achieve this, the LVVTA has established a certifier Community of Practice, and the first meeting was held in Auckland on 26 June. The next meeting is planned for 13 September, and future meetings will occur around every two months.
• We have ensured there will be an increased focus on consistency in the LVVTA’s certifier training – using the results of form set audits and common queries to identify individual and group training needs – and more opportunities within the training for certifiers to share with and learn from others, through case studies and group discussion of challenging cases.
• The LVVTA has formalised a new requirement for LVV certifiers to ‘co-certify’ (with another certifier) at least one vehicle per year, by adding this to the Operating Requirements Schedule (ORS).
• We have increased the frequency of auditing of certifiers carried out by our Certification Officers, to further ensure high standards are being maintained.
• The LVVTA is continuing to research options and approaches for making the Hobby Car Technical Manual available online. We expect the manual to be published online by the end of October 2016, and it will be renamed. (Comment- About time- ‘Hobby Car Manual’ was completely inappropriate)

Tailoring certification processes to risk

Together with the LVVTA, we consulted with certifiers and modifiers on short-term options for tailoring LVV certification to risk. As a result of the feedback we received, the LVVTA has:
• changed the certification process so that low-risk (‘below threshold’) modifications are excluded from LVV certification when more significant modifications are being certified
• increased the range of modifications that can be certified by different categories of LVV certifiers, which has increased the number of potential certifiers available for most types of certification, and
• excluded brake-testing from certain LVV certifications where it is not relevant to the modifications that have been made.
The result of these changes is that the time and complexity of some certifications will be reduced, as fewer items will need to be tested, and customers will find it easier to find a certifier for their vehicle.
The LVV Code and ORS have been updated to reflect the changes above, and LVV certifiers are currently receiving training on all these aspects.

Reviewing roles, functions and performance metrics
We’ve completed a review of the roles and functions of the various parties to the LVV system, and strengthened these where necessary to support good performance of the system. Some of the changes made include:
• formalising and documenting the LVVTA process for regularly updating the LVV Standards and Code
• reinstating regular formal meetings of the LVVTA-Transport Agency Policy Working Group
• confirming and clarifying the LVVTA’s processes for reporting on certifier performance, and
• formalising the Transport Agency’s annual auditing and review of LVVTA.

What work is happening now?
We’re currently working on further ways to tailor certification to risk, and are working with the LVVTA and industry to develop streamlining options. Our work focuses on vehicles that are currently required to undergo LVV certification, but are lower risk because:
• they’ve been produced in a commercial, production-based setting with quality controls in place, or
• they’ve already met appropriate standards overseas.
The options we’re working on are:
• creating a commercial sub-committee of the LVVTA’s Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) to enable quicker decision-making on approvals for innovative commercial designs
• allowing some modified vehicles imported from other countries to be exempted from LVV certification in New Zealand, if they’ve already met appropriate standards overseas, and
• providing an alternative way for commercial modifiers to achieve LVV certification for production-based vehicle modifications (sometimes referred to as ‘type certification’).
Once implemented, these changes will streamline certification processes and make it quicker and easier to get lower-risk modifications certified, creating benefits for commercial modifiers and importers of modified vehicles. We will consult key parties on the detailed changes in early September, and use their feedback to help refine the new processes. This consultation will include inviting members of this distribution list to provide their views, so you will receive more detailed information about the proposed changes soon. We expect the first of these new processes to be implemented in October and will gradually roll out further changes as they’re developed.

Why weren’t more tailored certification options rolled out sooner?
The options we’re considering represent more significant change to the LVV system than the short-term tailoring options that have already been implemented. They require us to consult and work closely with the LVVTA, LVV certifiers, and industry members to ensure they are implemented effectively. The LVV system is complex, both in terms of the way the sector is regulated and the legislation that supports it. We want to make sustainable changes, so taking a collaborative, considered approach is critical.

What’s happening next?
Through October, we’ll continue to work towards implementing further options for tailored certification described above. Once the changes have been implemented we’ll take stock of the improvements made, and consider whether any further changes are required to improve the functioning of the LVV system.

NZTA webpage

Low volume vehicle certification review (phase 2)

From NZTA:
This is to let you know we have updated our website with a new Questions and Answers document to provide an overview of work since we last communicated with you, and work currently under way.

Since we last updated you in December 2015, we have finalised our actions around:
• Increasing Transport Agency oversight of the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC), and
• Increasing user awareness of the TAC process as the pathway for innovative new approaches or materials and for specialist enquiries.
We have also made significant progress on the actions relating to:
• Working with the LVVTA and certifiers to ensure users experience consistent interpretation and application of standards.
• Developing and implementing tailored certification processes that reflect the risks associated with different types of modifications and the contexts of different sector groups.
• Reviewing and clarifying the roles, functions and performance metrics of the LVVTA, LVV certifiers and the Transport Agency in respect of the LVV system.
Included in the updated Q&As document is the following:
• Links to flow charts to step users through the LVV system, and case studies on our website profiling recent approvals for variation from technical requirements to show the sorts of modifications and variations that the LVVTA’s Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) deals with.
• An update on various initiatives to improve the consistency of certification decisions. This work was in response to concerns raised in the survey we conducted last year. LVVTA has already introduced changes to increase certifier consistency, and the additional changes planned or underway should see this improve further. We have already received feedback from industry that consistency has been improving.
• An update on our work to investigate tailored certification processes that reflect the risks associated with different types of modifications and the circumstances of different sector groups.
We’ll contact you soon with a further update about the review. We’ll only contact you when we have something new to say, and anticipate this won’t be for a few weeks.


Give a Little- Please!


The cost to me of defending Mr Johnson’s application for an Injunction to suppress this website has been $8264
Huge thanks to the generous donors who have already contributed $1233.45.

My financial position now is RETIRED, (now my LVV Certification authority has been revoked) and my only income is from National Super.

We WON the case, and Mr Johnson and the LVVTA were DENIED the Injunction that they wanted.
We WON because New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990, gives the entitlement to free speech, according to clause 3(b) relating to “by any person or body in the performance of any public function, power, or duty conferred or imposed on that person or body by or pursuant to law”. This clearly applies to Mr Johnson and the LVVTA.
New Zealand Bill of Rights

I then applied to the High Court for costs, although I represented myself, I had extensive legal help from Andrea Halloran, Staff Barrister, of Chris Patterson Barrister Limited

The Judges decision has finally arrived- Judge Woolford has decreed that Costs shall lie where they fall- in other words- I can claim nothing.

My actions were motivated by concern for public safety, and the way the Low Volume system was being run, and aimed at provoking the NZTA into reviewing the Low Volume Vehicle Certification system.
This is now happening, and I await to see the final outcome. I hope that we will have once again a workable Low Volume Vehicle Certification system which will benefit all Vehicle Modifiers.

FREE SPEECH about the dangers of the LVV System has cost me my LVV Certification business, instigated by Mr Johnson, and now, thousands of dollars to defend against Mr Johnson’s allegations of DEFAMATION.

The $7544 debt is a burden in my retirement, and I would appreciate any further donations, no matter how small, and call on everyone who will benefit from new Low Volume Certification system to make a small donation.


I have served my statement of defense, and there is a Case management Conference on 1st September before a Judge.

NEWS 2 August 2016- The Give a Little page has closed, and can’t be revived. So we have started another page, with exactly the same content. Not showing is the $1233.45 already donated

See Give a Little

Thank you for your support, now and in the past

John Brett


The Low Volume Vehicle System has failed in the following:-

The LVVTA have failed to develop and maintain LVV Standards- SEE- ORS Submission2 The LVVTA are failing to maintain an acceptable standard of safety of vehicles modified. LVVTA DANGERS- THE FACTS I understand that another Coroners report is pending, concerning a fatality resulting from the […]

Low Volume Vehicle Certification- Your Queries

We have been answering queries about LVV Certification ever since this website was started. The queries and the replies are spread around a number of posts.

So just to make things easier to find- here are some of the pages which might already have the answer you are looking for, or where you can post […]

Low volume vehicle certification review (phase 1)

From the NZTA website: Low volume vehicle certification review (phase 1)

Published: October 2015 | Category: Research & reports | Audience: Motorists

The Low Volume Vehicle (LVV) certification system for scratch-built or modified vehicles is being reviewed to ensure it is still fit for purpose, and to look for ways it could be improved.


Electronic Systems- LVV standard required?

It is no secret that a modern car is becoming a computer on wheels. Critical functions such as braking, steering, chassis dynamics are becoming- not just electronically enhanced, but electronically CONTROLLED by embedded software and electronics systems. Self-driving cars are not yet on New Zealand roads, but they do exist- and most of the enabling […]

Government probe into LVVTA and LVV system

1 Low volume vehicle review welcomed

Press release- NZ Police Thursday, 9 July 2015, 11:53 am

and Hon Craig Foss

Hon Craig Foss Associate Minister of Transport 9 July 2015

Low volume vehicle review welcomed

Associate Transport Minister Craig Foss is welcoming a review of the certification process for vehicles built from scratch or modified […]

Engineer’s report on faulty wheelchair vehicles haunts NZTA (UN-SAFER JOURNEYS?)

KIVI Kea Carnival conversion

Automotive News

The NZ Transport Agency dismissed a written report from one of its senior engineers warning that millions of dollars worth of wheelchair-access vehicles imported from Italy for use by the Accident Compensation Commission were unsafe and should not be allowed on NZ roads until they were repaired.

Tauranga […]

“Fair Go” programme taken on by LVV Certifier

NEWS- NZ Patent granted- see

Fair Go have been getting it all wrong, attacking a NZ business “The Battery Clinic” which reconditions battery packs for Hybrid cars, and which had developed the revolutionary “Power Jockey” which both extends the life of the battery packs, increases the cars performance, and makes big improvements to […]