Buying a vehicle in Austria

When purchasing a new vehicle within the  EU (e.g. in Austria) the dealer may not charge VAT. VAT is only due upon importation. When a used car is purchased within the  EU (e.g. in Austria) the dealer charges VAT.This should be shown on the invoice.

The following documents should be provided by the seller:

  • purchase contract or invoice
  • both registration certificates (Part I and Part II)
  • European certificate of conformity (COC)
    If the seller does not provide a COC, the necessary certification can be requested from the general importer for the vehicle brand (‘approval database extract’). 

If the vehicle is to be registered in another EU country, you should check whether additional documents are required there.

VAT as a security

In practice, some dealers charge VAT on the purchase of new vehicles as a security. However, this is refunded as soon as the vehicle has been registered in the buyer’s country. Usually, the seller will require a copy of the registration certificate and proof of VAT payment in order to perform this refund.


This does not entitle the buyer to claim a tax refund directly from the tax authorities, but only from the dealer. As a result, such refunds should be claimed quickly.

Voluntary technical inspection

When purchasing or selling a vehicle, dealers in Austria are not obliged to carry out a technical inspection. This only becomes mandatory 1 year after the vehicle was first registered. Certain EU Member States recognise technical inspections carried out in Austria.

However, it is normally recommended to have the vehicle inspected before purchase by an independent Austrian motorists’ association or an independent expert, with the agreement of the dealer. This applies in particular to used cars. The buyer must usually bear the costs of such inspections.

Disputes and cases of fraud

If a dispute arises during the purchasing process, consumers may call upon the Austrian consumer transactions mediator.

Cases of fraud can be reported to any police station or the competent public prosecutor’s office, as well as to the Cybercrime Reporting OfficeGerman text of the Federal Criminal Police Office.

Further links

Translated by the European Commission
Last update: 20 March 2024

Responsible for the content: Editorial Staff