In a win for all electric vehicle consumers the Australian High Court has today thrown out the Victorian tax on EV usage.

At a time when most other governments around the world are actively encouraging consumers to switch to EVs, the Victorian Government instead introduced a tax on EV users in 2021, to match the excise paid by ICE drivers through their fuel excise for road maintenance. This draconian, and frankly tone-deaf tax was also set to be introduced by other states in the coming years.

In breaking news today, the 2.8c/km travelled Victorian EV tax has been deemed unconstitutional as it is an excise which according to the constitution cannot be imposed by states or territories. Although the case was brought against the Victorian government, who argued that it was not an excise but instead a tax on activity, every single other state and territory and their Attorneys General lined up to support the Victorian government in court — we all know why and where it was headed had the tax not been quashed with the NSW and WA already earmarking dates where their similar tax would begin implementation.

In a time where governments should be encouraging people to make the switch to cleaner energy cars the tax was always a strange decision by the Victorian government and was brought in to make up to lost revenue due to less fuel usage. Studies showed that these type of taxes actively discouraged consumers from making the switch to an EV, as have the decrease an many government EV subsidies.

“There is nothing inherently wrong with road user charges, but they should never be calibrated to discourage the take up of electric vehicles,” said Behyad Jafari, CEO the Electric Vehicle Council which lobbies for EVs in Australia.

“Any road user charge scheme should be national and we now look forward to working with the federal government on sensible road funding reform, without singling out drivers who are trying to do the right thing.”

Today has been a win for consumers, the environment and hopefully our planet’s future. Governments need to come up with better ways to raise revenue for road maintenance rather than taxes that actively discourage the uptake of zero emission EVs.