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What is involved in registering non Cali Car in California?

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Old 05-14-2011, 09:28 PM
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What is involved in registering non Cali Car in California?

Moving to LA and want to bring a 2008 Civic from out of state with less than 7500 miles on it.The car was brought new in Colorado. Honda Service says that all 2008 Civics will pass Cali emissions without a problem. I find this surprising.

It is my understanding that any vehicle with less than 7500 miles that is imported from a Federal Emission State is considered a new car and that it must pass Cali Emissions. And that a car with more than 7500 miles is considered a used car and only has to pass Federal Emission Standards.

Does anyone know if 2008 Civics are all certified to pass California Emission Standards?

Any other considerations involved when bringing in a car from out of state?
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Old 05-14-2011, 10:10 PM
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Here is the DMV general page:
New Vehicles or Vehicles Never Registered in California

Here is a page that tells you what is needed to register a vehicle from out of state:
California DMV HTVR9 How To Register A Out of State Vehicle Nonresident Vehicle

It appears you are correct about the 7,500 mile or less special requirements. As are as I know, all vehicles from the major manufacturers are 50 state compliant. They learned a long time ago that it was too expensive to make special vehicles just for CA. You should be able to find a sticker somewhere under the hood that says whether it is a 49 or 50 state compliant. The owners manual probably has something too.

My best advice is to be a member of AAA. They can help you do all of this in your local club office. You will find their membership fee well worth it to stay out of a DMV office.

I can also tell you that it is very expensive to register in CA, and you may have to pay some sales tax too. We are expecting our registration fees and our sales tax rate to go down on July 1st, unless they renew a temporary tax hike that is supposed to expire. Personally I think the rates are probably going to go down, at least for a while. You might save some money if you can delay this until after that date.

Wow, that is very low mileage for a MY 2008.

Good luck.
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Old 05-14-2011, 11:17 PM
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Thanks for the information. That 2008 Civic has been a garage Civic for the last 3 years and has only 667 miles on it!

The way I understand it-If Honda has certified that this Civic is certified for Cali Emission Standards-then I can import it--have an emission test done -pass it and then register the car.

Does the State use I/M240 chassis dyno testing?
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Old 05-14-2011, 11:22 PM
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It's a dyno test. But I don't know the spec. Civics generally pass easily.
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Old 05-14-2011, 11:33 PM
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Does Cali have standards for window tint? The Civic has 37 percent tint on the side and rear glass. Would there be any issue in LA with this degree of window tint? This tint is the aftermarket/ inside glass applied type of tint-not factory tint.
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Old 05-14-2011, 11:42 PM
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Originally Posted by phoneman91 View Post
Does Cali have standards for window tint? The Civic has 37 percent tint on the side and rear glass. Would there be any issue in LA with this degree of window tint? This tint is the aftermarket/ inside glass applied type of tint-not factory tint.
California Window Tint Law | TintCenter Window Tinting

I don't think this will be a factor in the registration process. CA does not have safety inspections.
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