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 John’s authority was revoked in December 2012.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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High Court and Court of Appeal may have reached wrong conclusion

An opinion, presented by Rosa Laugesen* Submitted for the LLB (Honours) degree, Faculty of Law, Victoria University of Wellington, 2019 argues that the decisions of both the High Court and the Court of Appeal may both be faulty.

Article title-

DM Paciocco observed, rightly, that “persons ought not to be deprived easily of fundamental
rights and freedoms”.156 This article has argued that whilst a decision to deprive oneself of one’s right
to freedom of expression should be recognised by the courts, this recognition should not be given
easily. Courts must ensure that the waiver reflects the right-holder’s free choice or otherwise s 3 bodies
will be allowed to abandon their constitutional commitments too easily.
In Brett, the Court of Appeal failed to give effect to this notion. This article has submitted that,
while it was right to find that Mr Brett could waive his right to freedom of expression, the Court’s s 5
approach failed to subject his waiver to proper scrutiny. If the Court had taken a different approach it
may not have concluded that the waiver was valid. Unfortunately, Mr Brett may in fact have been
deprived too easily of a fundamental right


None of this has any current relevance- offered only for interest

LVVTA now gets NZTA funding

Banned wheelchair-access vehicle maker sues NZ transport bodies

NEWS 13th November 2020- Strike Out application by LVVTA and NZTA fails

A company forced by the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) to stop building wheelchair-access vehicles is suing the government body and its offshoot the Low Volume Vehicle Technical Association (LVVTA) for losses “expected to exceed $5 million.”

Lawyers for vehicle manufacturer Drive NZ Classic Ltd (DNZC) have filed a statement of claim in the High Court against the LVVTA as first defendant and the NZTA as second defendant.

The filing claims both the LVVTA and NZTA were negligent in their dealings with DNZC and had “no legal power” to force it to close its production facilities.

It says the LVVTA made “public statements, including to customers and prospective customers (of the vehicle modifier), which were incorrect and negatively affected (its) reputation.” It also says LVVTA misled the NZTA.

Roger Phillips

DNZC was formerly known as U-Drive Mobility (UDM), a Waiuku-based company owned by automotive businessman Roger Phillips (above). It modified Skoda Yeti vehicles for wheelchair users to drive themselves.

UDM built 10 vehicles from June 2011 to June 2013, certified by the LVVTA and its appointed agent and priced between $85,000 and $100,000. Nine were sold in New Zealand and one in Australia.

The first car had an original steel floor and was sold in January 2012. The second car was one of nine with aluminium composite floors. It was sold later in 2012 to an Australian customer.

Between October 2012 and June 2013, UDM modified the remaining eight Skoda Yeti vehicles. Meantime, it had applied to the LVVTA to move into volume production.

“On an unknown date,” says the statement of claim, “LVVTA received a complaint or complaints from competitors of UDM regarding the UDM vehicles.”


In December 2013, the NZTA notified the owners of the vehicles that certification had been revoked and they could no longer drive them on public roads.

LVVTA and NZTA said it had issues with seatbelt anchorages, the aluminium composite floor, use of adhesives, the independent rear suspension, durability, workmanship, and insisted that UDM further modify the vehicles.

UDM did so between December 2013 and July 2014. It hired independent engineers to test modifications and present findings to the LVVTA and NZTA.

But the NZTA refused to certify the vehicles. The statement of claim filed by Hamilton law firm Braun Bond and Lomas says the refusal was “based on erroneous grounds, a misunderstanding of the evidence presented to it, and a failure to accept advice and test results from independent and qualified experts in the relevant fields.”

The plaintiff DNZC claims an amount to be quantified before the hearing and interest on the sum from the date the relevant loses were suffered. A date for the hearing has yet to be set.

Automotive News

Freedom of the Press

“We do not believe any group of men adequate enough or wise enough to operate without scrutiny or without criticism. We know that the only way to avoid error is to detect it, that the only way to detect it is to be free to inquire. We know that in secrecy error undetected will flourish […]


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 […]

Davis Seymour on Free Speech

Dear Friend If you believe what you read in the news, you probably think I’m a racist who caused another politician to require Police protection. I wrote the article below to explain why that couldn’t be further from the truth, raising questions about how such a story came to be. Unfortunately, the media outlets most […]

Back to Court- (again)

The LVVTA is taking me back to the High Court yet again. This will be the fourth time in the High Court, and once in the Court of Appeal.

COURT DATE IS NOW SET FOR 18TH MAY 2020, JUDGEMENT AFTER THAT COULD TAKE 6 TO 9 MONTHS- that is about a year from now. This […]

Denial of Service attacks

We advise readers and contributors to this site that we are experiencing DENIAL OF SERVICE attacks, which overload the server so that the site cannot be reached. We have increased bandwidth twice, and are developing contingency plans if this continues. We have not yet identified the source of these attacks. Apologies to all- please email […]

Court of Appeal Hearing

CA725/2017 Low Volume Vehicle Technical Association v John Bernard Brett and Anor

This is to confirm that a fixture date has been allotted for the hearing of this appeal at 10.00 a.m. on Thursday 20th September 2018 One day has been allotted for the hearing. This will be at the Court of Appeal, Wellington. Three […]

Defamation Trial.

CIV-2015-404-001925 Mr AP Johnson and Low Volume Vehicle Technical Association vs John Brett

Auckland High Court

I self represented as a Lay Litigant

The trial occurred on Monday and Tuesday this week.

I claimed that I did not recognize the LVVTA as a legitimate party to the proceedings. My witness, Mr Robert Berger […]

Imported Modified Vehicles

In an email received from NZTA is this content:

“Good afternoon,

In September we invited you to comment on a proposed change to the process for imported modified vehicles, which would allow these vehicles to be excluded from LVV certification in New Zealand if they’ve already met appropriate overseas standards.

Please find attached a document […]