Nice article as usual and general point cogent, however what is needed is more transparency of specifications not of costs; the specs will guaranty value and we the (enlightened) public will be able to compare Apples for Apples.
Take the case of the VIP toilets, I expect cost to differ based on the soil type which will in-turn determine the the amount of retaining the pit will need and hence the cost.
The Hilux/prodo jeeps with prices allowed for and no specifications; which of the trims is being quoted for…? full option or base model…? armoured or ordinary…? A cursory glance at their website shows a $22,500 price differential between the top and bottom model in the petrol engine range alone and thats not taking the diesel option into consideration. (http://www.caradvice.com.au/377614/2016-toyota-landcruiser-prado-pricing-and-specifications/)
in between all these differences for the same products are sometimes huge differences in costs and it is this lack of transparency on what apple we’re buying that makes the budget so opaque (intentionally, I strongly suspect)
A Bill of Quantities based model to the Budget (not too sure how practical this is), will reduce these obfuscations going forward.