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25 year rule in Texas?

Discussion in 'EPA Regulations' started by NatureBoy, Oct 29, 2014.

  1. NatureBoy

    NatureBoy New Member

    Hey guys, thinking about getting a K truck from japan and was wondering if it could be street legal if I get a title for it and it is older than 25 years. Here in Texas getting cars street legal that are older than 25 years is fairly simple, just need to pass with brakes, blinkers, horn, etc....but I was wondering since these little trucks have small motors if there is a clause anywhere? I will continue doing research but figured I would just post up and see if anyone knew already?

    Thanks guys!
  2. renli3d

    renli3d Member


    To summarize it, you will need to have your vehicle inspected to ensure that all emissions and safety equipment that was on the vehicle when it was manufactured is present and functional. As long as you don't bring in a modified vehicle that had parts removed you should be fine. After your vehicle passes inspection it should only be a matter of giving the department of licensing the inspection certificate, the Japan export certificate, commercial invoice showing the price you paid for the vehicle (for taxes) and an original stamped CBP from 7501 that is evidence you legally imported the vehicle into the U.S. That said, I'm from WA but I can't imagine the process would be much different in other states.
  3. Wheelie

    Wheelie Member

    good luck, From what I researched they ruled against it and state that the safety regulations don't match foreign market standards and were never intended for north american markets. Since the safety standards don't align ,Texas will likely never allow them until its allowed on a federal level. On mine I thought maybe I could get it registered as a MSV (medium speed vehicle) or LSV (low speed vehicle) but I haven't tried. I also own land in Oklahoma so I was thinking maybe registering it there as they allow them to be used as MSV's only to not be driven on main highways. Anyone prove me wrong as I hope I am but I have yet to hear of anyone in Texas to have a legal plate.
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2017
  4. matt167

    matt167 Active Member

    25yrs old is federally DOT/ FMVSS exempt. And 21 years is EPA exempt. So any state that will recognize that, they will be able to be put on the road in that state. They may need an extra inspection or vin check but its all legal... The exemption is 25 years to the month. So July of 1992 build date right now. And the cbp-7501 has to declare it a motor vehicle along with the HS7. Without those docs, your sol.

    What I know about Texas.tho is they require the original CBP-7501 and a certified translation of the export certificate, and otherwise try to make it harder. Vermont is commonly used for the quick and dirty way out. Its a legal loophole you can google.
  5. Wheelie

    Wheelie Member

    Thats good info, too bad mines a 95. Sounds like a giant PITA for a plate and a lot of trips to the dmv to deal with the bitches behind the counter. Im ok with no plate. Land of the free my ass~!
  6. matt167

    matt167 Active Member

    In Texas, I'd probably send the paperwork to Vermont. They are like the go-to state for that kind of thing.. Download the paperwork from their website. Get the vin inspection filled out and then send in all your paperwork pre paid, you will get a registration and plates in the mail.. Then just wait 30 days and register it with your state... But of course 1992 or older is the catch.
  7. Wheelie

    Wheelie Member

    Ive never heard of this Vermont thing. Ill look into it. Wondering about reciprocity issues but sounds like a good loophole.
  8. matt167

    matt167 Active Member

    It is, you just need a vehicle that is federally legal ( 25 or older )... Vermont is the go to state because, they do not require you live there. They really do not give a crap as long as the vehicle is 15 years old, or older, and outside USA imports are really easy to push through there .. In my area, there are 3 KEI trucks sold by the local dealer who recomends going through VT due to issues in NY ( issues that from experience do not exist ). They all have VT plates. They basically require the HS7 and the EPA exemption doc. The export cert does not matter, tho if you had it. throw it in.

    Vermont normally, writes a transferable registration on a vehicle 15yrs or older. So they are also used for lost title vehicles and there are several titling services using Vermont..

    As for having an imported vehicle 24 yrs or newer. If it was brought over without a speed limiting device ( shift lock out, or governor ect...). Then it technically is not legal, at all. The only way to bring those trucks in, is to declare them as an offroad vehicle on the HS7 form which requires a speed limiter.. And imports newer than 21yrs need an EPA cert.
    piratebenjamin and Wheelie like this.
  9. Wheelie

    Wheelie Member

    Cool, great info! thanks for the link. My truck is 22 yrs old so I'm guessing I could ignore the EPA cert. As far as limiter, My truck in 4th does well to go 50 km so Im not sure if its governed or not? Seems it just runs out of gearing to me and mine is only a 4 speed. If not governed, Id hate to imagine them even more gutless. I don't really mind as I can only creep around on my hilly, rocky terrain at my property in Oklahoma.Thats really why I want plates anyhow as I don't really plan to use it in Texas that much. It would be nice to be drive to town in OK though! I may give this Vermont thing a shot. I also have a 1959 Chevy truck that I don't have the title for. Maybe I can use it for that as well.
  10. matt167

    matt167 Active Member

    As far as I know, the 4 and 5spds have the same gearing, with 4th being 1:1 in both. My truck will run 90 KMH in 4th if I push it, but always shift into 5th at 80 KMH, and it will run to 55-60 pretty easy in 5th..

    You can for sure use VT to title the '59 Chevy. Just send in a pre paid VD-119 into their main office in Montplier http://dmv.vermont.gov/sites/dmv/files/documents/VD-119-Vehicle_Reg_Tax_Title_App.pdf

    Use the same form for a imported vehicle, but attach the required other paperwork with it

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