New Zealand Certificate in Light Automotive Engineering (Level 4)

Are cars your passion? Then take the next step to turn your dream career into reality.

This Level 4 course teaches you the skills and knowledge you need to become fully qualified as an automotive engineer.

Technology may be changing but skilled automotive engineers who are tech-savvy and know their way around a vehicle, will continue to be in demand.

Learn how to diagnose car problems, service and repair, and get up to speed with the latest automotive technologies and new generation hi-tech, hi-spec vehicles. You could also be working on a range of other light automotive vehicles, such as motorbikes, boats and campervans.

At Toi Ohomai you can choose between two training options to complete this two-year course. You can either:

  • begin a apprenticeship with an employer, which is managed by Toi Ohomai, OR
  • start your training on campus at our commercial workshop and then continue with a managed apprenticeship to become fully qualified.

Whichever option you choose, you get plenty of hands-on workshop experience working on client vehicles. In your own time, you complete online assessments, subnmitting evidence of practical work accompanied by descriptions showing that you understand the theory behind your practical learning.

Toi Ohomai is the only technical institute in the country to operate a commercial automotive workshop. If you choose to start your training with us, we’ll simply change your enrolment to a managed apprenticeship when you get a full-time job.

You still have access to all our campus facilities. Most importantly, our qualified tutors visit you regularly and continue to provide ongoing mentoring and support throughout your apprenticeship.

Content Details

During the course you'll study:

AUTO4012: Effective Workplace Maintenance and Safety
AUTO4013: High Risk Automotive Systems Safety
AUTO4014: Engine Systems
AUTO4015: Fuel and Emission Systems
AUTO4016: Driveline Systems
AUTO4017: Transmission Systems
AUTO4018: Climate Control
AUTO4019: Vehicle Safety Systems
AUTO4020: Body Control Systems
AUTO4021: Wiring Systems
AUTO4022: Braking Systems
AUTO4023: Suspension Systems
AUTO4024: Steering Systems
AUTO4025: Wheels and Tyres


Planned intakes*: February, April, May, July, September, October
Delivery modes: Full-time/part-time
Locations*: Rotorua (Mokoia Campus), Taupo, Tauranga (Windermere Campus), Tokoroa, Whakatane
Duration: 2-3 years

* subject to change. Intakes may vary between locations.

To see full details of the next available intake please visit the application form.

Indicative Fees

2018 domestic students $6,680.00

The fee shown for domestic students is applicable to New Zealand citizens and permanent residents. If an international fee is not listed above please refer to the international fees page. All fees are indicative only and subject to change.

You MAY be eligible for a StudyLink Student Loan for your tuition fees.

Find out if your programme qualifies by visiting the Studylink website.

If you also need to pay course related costs, i.e. if outlined in programme costs above, you need to apply separately to StudyLink (up to $1,000/academic year for eligible students). Note course related costs are paid directly into your bank account by StudyLink and you will be required to pay this to Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology.

Qualifications Gained

On successful completion of the course you will receive:

  • New Zealand Certificate in Light Automotive Engineering (Level 4)

Career Opportunities

  • Graduates will be able to work in a range of workplaces in positions that involve service and repair of light vehicles, such as a light automotive engineer. 

Entry Criteria

  • A Level 3 qualification in Automotive Engineering, or
  • Evidence of equivalent skills and knowledge
  • Be employed in a light automotive engineering workshop - you (and your employer) will be required to enter into a training agreement with Toi Ohomai institute of Technology.

Other considerations:

  • All applicants will be required to participate in an information sharing session.
  • A current workplace first aid certificate prior to enrolment; and
  • A Class 1 licence achieved before programme completion.


International applicants for whom English is not their first language will be required to show evidence of language competency, issued within the last two years, before being eligible to enrol in any non-English programme. The level of competency required is outlined in Rule 18 and Appendix 2 of the NZQF Programme and Accreditation Rules 2013. And below under the title English Competency.

English Competency

Level 4 certificate IELTS General or Academic score of 5.5 with no band score lower than 5 or completed NZ Certificate in English Language L3 with an endorsement of either General, Workplace or Academic, or meets a relevant English Proficiency Outcome as outlined in Rule 18 and Appendix 2 of the NZQF Programme and Accreditation Rules 2013.

For domestic applicants for whom English is not their first language, evidence of language competency may be required.