Blueprints and resources


Blueprint specification sheets

Gaining vehicle approval

'Blueprint' designs for quad-axle semi-trailers and B-doubles have been pre-approved using performance-based standards and made available to the heavy vehicle industry. Operators can use these 'blueprints' to apply for access on a PBS networks.

The NHVR is currently in the process of reviewing the specification sheets for the following types of combinations:

  • B-triple Road Train
  • Quad-axle Semi-trailer
  • Quad Quad B-double (Standard)
  • Quad-Quad B-double (Steering)
  • Quad-Tri B-double (Standard)
  • Quad-Tri B-double (Steering) 

If you have any questions relating to these blueprints, please contact the PBS team directly at 

Note: The original documents are no longer available. 

20m semi-trailer blueprint

The 20m semi-trailer blueprint has been developed including extensive consultation with industry to operate as a PBS Level 1 vehicle. A support tool has been developed by the National Transport Commission to assist operators in configuring a vehicle to suit their needs. The support tool and its user guide can be downloaded below.

20m semi-trailer blueprint support tool (XLS, 871KB)

User guide for the 20m semi-trailer blueprint support tool (PDF, 1.5MB)

Please refer to the user guide for details on how to submit an application to the NHVR's PBS team.

Quad-axle semi-trailer

A quad-axle group semi-trailer can have a gross combination mass of up to 50 tonnes (or 50.5 tonnes). Proposed maximum axle group loads are:

  • single steer axle – 6 tonnes (or 6.5 tonnes)
  • tandem drive axle group – 17 tonnes
  • quad-axle group – 27 tonnes.

Quad-axle B-double

B-double combinations can be configured to carry the equivalent of two 40-foot containers, with a gross combination mass of up to:

  • 72.5 tonnes (or 73.0 tonnes) if one quad-axle group is fitted
  • 77.0 tonnes (or 77.5 tonnes) if two quad-axle groups are fitted.

Maximum axle group loads

Proposed maximum axle group loads are:

  • single steer axle – 6 tonnes (or 6.5 tonnes)
  • tandem drive axle group – 17 tonnes
  • triaxle group – 22.5 tonnes
  • quad-axle group – 27 tonnes.

Other requirements

  • dual tyres on quad-axle groups
  • a steerable rear axle with at least +/- 12 degrees steering articulation and an effective centring mechanism (or another system acceptable to the registration authority)
  • a load sharing system at least as effective as for a tri-axle group
  • road-friendly certified suspension (refer Vehicle Standards Bulletin 11)
  • (optional) ‘lift axles’ complying with ADR 43/04
  • accreditation through the National Heavy Vehicle Accreditation Scheme (NHVAS) or equivalent mass and maintenance accreditation.
  • the Intelligent Access Program (IAP) as a potential tool for route compliance.


Low speed swept path

The primary purpose of this standard is to safely manage the risk associated with turns at intersections by limiting the road space required by a vehicle participating in the PBS Scheme when making low-speed turns.

The Low speed swept path templates can be downloaded in Swept Path Level 1-4 Templates (ZIP, 2.9MB) or individually from the table below:

Road Profile B - ARRB (PDF, 89KB) for ‘road B’ used in ARRB Report 342, 1999.