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Thread: No more 'home made' vehicles allowed to be registered in Texas

  1. #1
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    No more 'home made' vehicles allowed to be registered in Texas

    Edit: replicas still appear to be safe. So while some FFR vehicles are stIll able to be registered, others are not.

    ___________

    Since I've used this forum while I heavily looked into building a FFR MK IV I figured I should give you guys a heads up on an extremely disturbing development....

    As of April 1, 2013 no more 'Homemade vehicles' can be registered in the state of TX.

    I received a new assembled vehicle (Ariel Atom) 2 weeks ago, and since then have gone to 2 different DMV regional offices trying to register the car. At both I was told that as of April 1, there is a new law that requires ALL vehicles to comply with federal motor vehicle safety standards. In fact, it specifically states that homemade cars are no longer able to be registered.

    https://ftp.txdmv.gov/pub/txdot-info...l_book_451.pdf

    On page 376, under 'Eligibility for Title' it says "Homemade vehicles are not eligible for title or registration. Homemade vehicles are described as vehicles that were not previously manufactured by a NHTSA approved manufacturer..."

    Anyone else run into this yet? I can't believe that in Texas (of all states) this law got passed.

    Parker
    Last edited by beanboy; 05-22-2013 at 10:04 PM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Avalanche325's Avatar
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    .....and if you read page 377 it tells you that you can register a replica.

  3. #3
    Carl carlewms's Avatar
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    For those curious what an Ariel Atom here is a photo:

    image.jpg

    Pretty radical looking street legal car! I read the code provided and I see how someone at DMV would not apply the replica regulation on page 377.

    "New Replica
    New Vehicle built by a Motor Vehicle Manufacturer as a Replica of a previous year, make, and model of vehicle. When a replica of a previous year, make, and model of vehicle is built as a new vehicle by a motor vehicle manufacturer, the vehicle must be titled by recording the make, year model, body style, and VIN as shown on the manufacturer's Certificate of Origin (MCO). The word “Replica” should be shown in conjunction with the body style. A MCO is required as evidence of ownership."

    The challenge to using this as a basis of registration is the Ariel Atom does not appear to be a replica.

    What I do find disturbing to replica car builders is "new vehicle built by a Motor Vehicle Manufacturer sure could be subject to interpretation at the individual DMV level. Is the car built by the owner or is it built by the manufacturer? I would try to argue the kit is built by the manufacturer and assembled by the owner to try to get around the regulation.

    Interesting dilemma! If I was in Texas building an FFR I would be seeking their view on the subject.

    I would think the Texans on the forum would weigh in here!

    Carl
    Mk 4 Roadster
    October 25, 2012 - Kit Arrives
    April 8, 2013 - Build Starts
    August 23, 2015 - Rolling Chassis/Engine & Transmission Installed
    March 26, 2016 - Go Cart

  4. #4
    Senior Member Mike N's Avatar
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    Not good news. Looks like the Roadster and 33 would squeak by as replicas but not the GTM or 818.
    Mike............

    FFR2100 - 331 with KB supercharger - T5 - 5 link rear 3.08's and T2 Torsen.

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    It goes to the early auto owners not treating cars the same way they treated guns. As a right, not a privilege. The government got the first say in about licensing, registration, and went so far as to demand you walk in front of the car waving a red flag or lantern. And, government was basically reflecting the attitude of other citizens of the day.

    Getting to regulate what a car is, or isn't, and what it is required to have, or not, has led straight to this situation. Texas can tell you what a car is and whether you get to drive it on the public roads.

    Good luck with that. It will likely get worse, not better.

    Now you see why the NRA drew a line in the sand a century ago.

  6. #6
    Senior Member CraigS's Avatar
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    I think this is double worrisome since it's Texas!
    FFR MkII, 408W, Tremec TKO 500, 2015 IRS, DA QA1s, Forte front bar, APE hardtop.

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    I would think FFR 1933 falls into a custom built vehicle,not a replica.I don't think it will be a problem,as long as you have documentation and number's,it seems to be more about stolen vehicle parts,anybody else read into that way?just my 2 cents.,HOW TO REGISTER AN ANTIQUE OR CUSTOM BUILT VEHICLE
    You will have to visit a County Tax Office near you to register your antique or custom-built Vehicle. When registering a custom-built or antique vehicle, you will need to bring the following materials to the renewal office:
    A completed and notarized Title Application, when obtaining a title for a new, custom- built/rebuilt vehicle.
    The Certificate of Title or manufacturer's certificate of origin, for antique or custom/rebuilt vehicles that have already been titled.
    A Bill of Sale showing vehicle ownership and also of all components used.
    A completed Builder's Affidavit, for custom-built/rebuilt vehicles. If a motor, frame or body has been changed in an existing vehicle it has to be recorded by correcting the Title certificate. For rebuilt vehicles, you will need pencil tracings of body, motor and frame number, duly filled Form VTR-68-N (for reassigned vehicle identification number), weight certificate, proof of financial responsibility and a vehicle photograph.
    A completed application for Vehicle Identification Number for vehicle located out of Texas.
    An Inspector's Report, certifying that the vehicle is safe to take on the road is required for "classic" vehicles. The Department of Safety's Safety Inspection Station will provide the report, following the vehicle inspection. Depending on the age of the car, some parts do not have to be inspected unless the original parts have been retained. Rebuilt vehicles will also need safety inspection.
    FEES
    When registering an antique or custom-built assembled vehicle, you will be required to pay the appropriate titling fees. Accepted modes of payment are cash, money orders, checks or credit cards ($1 is charged as processing fee for this option).
    RENEWING A CUSTOM-BUILT OR ANTIQUE VEHICLE REGISTRATION
    Your custom-built assembled or antique vehicle's registration will clearly indicate when it will expire. The process for renewing the registration on a custom or antique vehicle is the same as renewing the registration on a regular motor vehicle.
    ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
    Auto Insurance is exempt for antique vehicles that meet provisions of restricted use in Texas.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Avalanche325's Avatar
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    I read that part of the document out of curiosity. It is NOT talking about cars like ours. It is talking about things like taking the back half of a VW and splicing a motorcycle front end on it. That was the specific example. It also says that it is OK to cut two different cars in half and splice them together. Go figure. My virus scanner lit up right after downloading the doc, so be careful. Strangely, I posted two warnings that did not show up.

    However, I agree that IF IT IS SAFE and meets the rules (and there should be rules), you should be able to build, license, and drive whatever you want. There are plenty of unsafe vehicles on the road right now. Most states have stopped doing inspections altogether, which is just insanity.

    Wasn't Texas the last state to outlaw drinking while you are driving? I remember hearing the governer say, I think in the 80s, "A man should be able to drink a beer on the way home from a hard days work." Not all rules are bad. It just seems like there is always the notion to go too far.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Avalanche325 View Post
    Wasn't Texas the last state to outlaw drinking while you are driving? I remember hearing the governer say, I think in the 80s, "A man should be able to drink a beer on the way home from a hard days work." Not all rules are bad. It just seems like there is always the notion to go too far.
    Up until 2001, they didn't have an open container law. You could drink in the car, as long as the driver wasn't drinking/drunk.

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    Sounds like Mark Smith's kit car wouldn't pass either.

  11. #11
    Senior Member jkrueger's Avatar
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    I just read through that section and it still allows for an assembled vehicle title and registration. The fact that you have a MSO from FFR seems to allow you to title a gtm or 818 as an assembled vehicle and the 33, cobra and coupe as a replica with custom plates (which is what I did with my coupe in January.

    JC
    Factory Five Type-65 Coupe:"Race Spec" coupe, Ordered 1/12, picked-up 5/12, roller 5/12, first start 10/12, finished 4/13
    Factory Five Roadster: Sold 12/2011.
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    Senior Member riptide motorsport's Avatar
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    this is disturbing!
    FFR Daytona Type 65 Coupe
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    Ok so now that I have just moved to Houston and want to build a MkIV.. am I going to be able to register the car for street use? Is there a difference between "replica" or "Home made Vehicles"?

  14. #14
    Senior Member Avalanche325's Avatar
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    Page 377.

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    It does appear that a business issuing a MSO or some sort of VIN for the chassis will get consideration. To do more than than would tread on Federal DOT grounds.

    And as pointed out, just welding a bunch of tubing together and calling it a car won't cut it. While any competent race chassis builder can do the job, as usual, it's not that guy causing the problem. It's the guy with a bigger vision than a set of skills who's getting knocked on the head.

    The background story would be appropriate to dig up, like which legislator introduced the bill and why. Having a good understanding of the reasoning will go toward being able to discuss it with your rep in your state when some other bright guy decides to impose it on you there.

  16. #16
    Senior Member ram_g's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tirod View Post
    The background story would be appropriate to dig up, like which legislator introduced the bill and why.
    I've been doing some digging and can't find any related bill; it seems to me to be an administrative rule change of some sort.

    I agree with your conjecture of the MCO but it would seem that the OP's Ariel Atom would also have had an MCO or a VIN? Either way it is disturbing because of the well known problem in Texas of each county clerk office interpreting the DMV rules slightly differently - this just gives them one more opportunity to be a pain in the rear.
    FFR Mk3.1 #6720. Carb'd 302. Fun.

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    Senior Member Raceral's Avatar
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    SEMA website has the fact.. do a little research.. they have done a good job keeping information out there. Look at their state by state tool box

    H.B.ANo.A890
    AN ACT
    relating to certain custom vehicles and street rods.
    BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
    SECTIONA1.AASubchapter B, Chapter 501, Transportation Code,
    is amended by adding Section 501.038 to read as follows:
    Sec.A501.038.AACERTIFICATE OF TITLE FOR CUSTOM VEHICLE OR
    STREET ROD. (a) In this section, "custom vehicle" and "street rod"
    have the meanings assigned by Section 504.501.
    (b)AANotwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, if
    the department issues a certificate of title for a custom vehicle or
    street rod, the model year and make of the vehicle must be listed on
    the certificate of title and must be the model year and make that
    the body of the vehicle resembles. The certificate of title must
    also include the word "replica."
    (c)AAThe owner of the custom vehicle or street rod shall
    provide the department with documentation identifying the model
    year and make that the body of the vehicle resembles.
    SECTIONA2.AAThe heading to Section 504.501, Transportation
    Code, as effective September 1, 2011, is amended to read as follows:
    Sec.A504.501.AACLASSIC MOTOR VEHICLES AND TRAVEL TRAILERS;
    CUSTOM VEHICLES; STREET RODS.
    SECTIONA3.AASection 504.501, Transportation Code, as
    effective September 1, 2011, is amended by amending Subsection (a)
    and adding Subsections (d), (e), and (f) to read as follows:
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    (a)AAThe department shall issue specialty license plates for
    a motor vehicle that is at least 25 years old or is a custom vehicle
    or street rod.AAThe license plates must include the word or words
    "Classic," "Custom Vehicle," or "Street Rod," or a similar
    designation, as appropriate.
    (d)AANotwithstanding Chapter 547, a custom vehicle or street
    rod eligible to receive license plates under this section is not
    required to be equipped with a specific piece of equipment unless
    the specific piece of equipment was required by statute as a
    condition of sale during the year listed as the model year on the
    certificate of title.
    (e)AAOn initial registration of a custom vehicle or street
    rod, the owner must provide proof, acceptable to the department,
    that the custom vehicle or street rod passed a safety inspection
    that has been approved by the department. The department shall
    create a safety inspection process for inspecting custom vehicles
    and street rods.
    (f)AAIn this section:
    (1)AA"Custom vehicle" means a vehicle:
    (A)AAthat is:
    (i)AAat least 25 years old and of a model
    year after 1948; or
    (ii)AAmanufactured to resemble a vehicle
    that is at least 25 years old and of a model year after 1948; and
    (B)AAthat:
    (i)AAhas been altered from the
    manufacturer ’s original design; or
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    H.B.ANo.A890
    2
    (ii)AAhas a body constructed from materials
    not original to the vehicle.
    (2)AA"Street rod" means a vehicle:
    (A)AAthat was manufactured:
    (i)AAbefore 1949; or
    (ii)AAafter 1948 to resemble a vehicle
    manufactured before 1949; and
    (B)AAthat:
    (i)AAhas been altered from the
    manufacturer ’s original design; or
    (ii)AAhas a body constructed from materials
    not original to the vehicle.
    SECTIONA4.AASection 548.052, Transportation Code, is amended
    to read as follows:
    Sec.A548.052.AAVEHICLES NOT SUBJECT TO INSPECTION. This
    chapter does not apply to:
    (1)AAa trailer, semitrailer, pole trailer, or mobile
    home moving under or bearing a current factory-delivery license
    plate or current in-transit license plate;
    (2)AAa vehicle moving under or bearing a paper dealer
    in-transit tag, machinery license, disaster license, parade
    license, prorate tab, one-trip permit, antique license, custom
    vehicle license, street rod license, temporary 24-hour permit, or
    permit license;
    (3)AAa trailer, semitrailer, pole trailer, or mobile
    home having an actual gross weight or registered gross weight of
    4,500 pounds or less;
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    H.B.ANo.A890
    3
    (4)AAfarm machinery, road-building equipment, a farm
    trailer, or a vehicle required to display a slow-moving-vehicle
    emblem under Section 547.703;
    (5)AAa former military vehicle, as defined by Section
    504.502 [502.275];
    (6)AAa vehicle qualified for a tax exemption under
    Section 152.092, Tax Code; or
    (7)AAa vehicle for which a certificate of title has been
    issued but that is not required to be registered.
    SECTIONA5.AAThis Act takes effect September 1, 2011.
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    H.B.ANo.A890
    4
    ______________________________ ______________________________
    AAAAPresident of the Senate Speaker of the HouseAAAAAA
    I certify that H.B. No. 890 was passed by the House on April
    26, 2011, by the following vote:AAYeas 148, Nays 0, 2 present, not
    voting.
    ______________________________
    Chief Clerk of the HouseAAA
    I certify that H.B. No. 890 was passed by the Senate on May
    24, 2011, by the following vote:AAYeas 30, Nays 0.
    ______________________________
    Secretary of the SenateAAAA
    APPROVED:AA_____________________
    AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAADateAAAAAAAAAA
    AAAAAAAAAAA_____________________
    AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGovernorAAAAAAA
    H.B.ANo.A890
    5
    Thanks,
    Al Adkins
    Certified "Kool Aid" drinker

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    Beanboy, to answer your question yes we ran into the same problem! We built and sold a mev tR1ke to a customer in San Antonio! He cant get registration because of the new law! I cant believe that our law makers would destroy an industry like kit cars in this state!!!! Sounds like something California would do. We have been in contact with the DMV and apparently the state has a list of approved vehicles! We are trying to get on this list!

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    Senior Member mekeys's Avatar
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    Time to get some lawyer buddies together and sue the hell out of them ..

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    Senior Member jkrueger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rocketman1 View Post
    Beanboy, to answer your question yes we ran into the same problem! We built and sold a mev tR1ke to a customer in San Antonio! He cant get registration because of the new law! I cant believe that our law makers would destroy an industry like kit cars in this state!!!! Sounds like something California would do. We have been in contact with the DMV and apparently the state has a list of approved vehicles! We are trying to get on this list!

    Do we know what cars are on that list or do we have access to the list?
    Factory Five Type-65 Coupe:"Race Spec" coupe, Ordered 1/12, picked-up 5/12, roller 5/12, first start 10/12, finished 4/13
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    Senior Member dallas_'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by beanboy View Post
    Edit: replicas still appear to be safe.
    Agreed: Have them read Section 25.14 which clearly allows replicas to be registered and titled. We used the "Custom Vehicle" category. Download the appropriate forms, follow them exactly, and you should have little trouble. Some DMV offices haven't done them before so you kind of have to walk them thru it. If they won't, then take your forms to another office.
    FFR 7123 tilt front, Levy 5link/wilwoods/LCA's, webers.
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  22. #22
    Senior Member jkrueger's Avatar
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    I just posted this in the 818 section.

    I live in TX as well and have built two FFRs and want to build the 818 as well. I suggest talking to your DMV office and have them pull out their book that gives them guidance on titling cars. I'll stop at mine and ask the same thing when I get a chance.

    You can download the latest title manual here:
    http://txdmv.gov/reports-and-data/pu...s/67-reference

    The section on assembled vehicles is on page 25-14. It goes through the entire process for titling an assembled vehicle which seems the 818 and GTM would fit in, then there is a paragraph that says home made vehicles can't be titled. One example they give is mating a bike front to a vw bug rear, they also say a home made vehicle is one in which "not previously manufactured by a NHTSA approved manufacturer", which would seem to encompass all kit car manufacturers. They also talk about titling replica cars which all can come from kit car manufacturers.

    So, I think a trip to the DMV for some clarification is needed.

    JC
    Factory Five Type-65 Coupe:"Race Spec" coupe, Ordered 1/12, picked-up 5/12, roller 5/12, first start 10/12, finished 4/13
    Factory Five Roadster: Sold 12/2011.
    http://www.25tires.com

  23. #23
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    As I'd thought, this appears to be a direct consequence of SEMA lobbying. Their legislation is only intended to protect antiques and replicas of antiques, nothing modern:

    http://www.semasan.com/semaga/Bills/..._StreetRod.pdf

    They may not have specifically told the legislators they lobbied to exclude modern kits, but in having the laws rewritten, they opened Pandora's box and only took care of their own.

    Funny that they worked so tirelessly to change the Texas law, given that we didn't have a problem titling and registering kits here before.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by jkrueger View Post
    I just posted this in the 818 section.

    I live in TX as well and have built two FFRs and want to build the 818 as well. I suggest talking to your DMV office and have them pull out their book that gives them guidance on titling cars. I'll stop at mine and ask the same thing when I get a chance.

    You can download the latest title manual here:
    http://txdmv.gov/reports-and-data/pu...s/67-reference

    The section on assembled vehicles is on page 25-14. It goes through the entire process for titling an assembled vehicle which seems the 818 and GTM would fit in, then there is a paragraph that says home made vehicles can't be titled. One example they give is mating a bike front to a vw bug rear, they also say a home made vehicle is one in which "not previously manufactured by a NHTSA approved manufacturer", which would seem to encompass all kit car manufacturers. They also talk about titling replica cars which all can come from kit car manufacturers.

    So, I think a trip to the DMV for some clarification is needed.

    JC
    Read 25-15, I'm hoping this covers us 818 prospective builders:

    FROM 25-15

    Assembled Vehicle Using a Manufactured Prefabricated Body
    A certificate of title must be obtained for a vehicle assembled with a manufactured
    prefabricated body, such as Meyers Manx, Aztec, or Lone Star Classics Roadster, as one
    of the three basic component parts (motor, frame, and body).
    The description of vehicle should be indicated on the application for title as follows:
    1. Make of Vehicle - The make is the same as shown on the evidence of ownership
    covering the prefabricated body. If a make is not shown on the evidence, the make
    should be shown as “assembled.” (( This should be FFR ))
    2. Year Model - The year model is the same as shown on the evidence of ownership
    covering the prefabricated body. If a year model is not shown or if the make is
    “assembled”, the year model is the year the vehicle was assembled. (( FFR Year of Manuf ))
    3. Body Style - The body style should be shown as “2D” (2D Sedan), “4D” (4D Sedan),
    “RD” (Roadster), etc.
    4. If a 1956 through 1969 year model Volkswagen Beetle floorpan or floorpan and
    chassis is used, the VIN appearing on the floorpan must be shown on the application as
    the VIN; or if the frame or frame and chassis is other than a 1956 through 1969 year
    model Volkswagen Beetle floorpan or floorpan and chassis, the manufacturer's VIN
    affixed to the prefabricated body must be shown on the application. If no
    manufacturer's VIN is affixed to the body or Volkswagen floorpan, an assigned VIN
    must be obtained from the department. (Refer to Chapter 13, “Vehicle Identification
    Numbers”).
    The space for previous owner should show the word “assembled.”
    The following evidence must support an application for title covering an assembled
    vehicle using a manufactured prefabricated body:
    1. Manufacturer's Certificate of Origin, invoice, or bill of sale covering the installed
    prefabricated body.
    2. Bills of sale covering other component parts (frame and motor). If a 1956 through
    1969 year model Volkswagen Beetle floorpan or floorpan and chassis is used, any
    outstanding title (or registration receipt, if non title state) covering the vehicle from
    which such floorpan, or floorpan and chassis, was removed must be used as a bill of
    sale or evidence of ownership; or if the certificate of title has already been surrendered
    to the department for cancellation, a bill of sale may be used.
    3. A completed Rebuilt Vehicle Statement, Form VTR-61.
    4. Pencil tracing of the frame number, body number, and die-stamped motor number; and
    if an assigned number has been obtained, a completed Notice of Assigned Number or
    Installation or Reassigned Vehicle Identification Number, Form VTR-68-N must be
    attached.
    5. Photograph of vehicle.
    6. A copy of the registration receipt showing that the vehicle was registered at the time
    the application for title was filed.
    7. Certified weight certificate.
    8. Valid proof of financial responsibility, covering the described vehicle in the
    applicant's name.
    9. If the vehicle is from out of state, only than is an Out-of-state Vehicle Identification
    Certificate, VI-30, issued by a State appointed Safety Inspection Station required.


    Where it maybe gets a bit sticky is ensuring that the frame / unibody of the donor is accounted for. To be safe, I think I'd want to cancel the title and sell for scrap. That should cover it.

    Any comments on this appreciated.

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    I posted this in the 818 forum, but I'll put it here too, in case anyone's had any doubts about the Roadster or other Factory Five models in Texas.

    The 2014 Texas title manual was released a few months back, accompanied by a new standalone assembled vehicle manual, which appears to reverse the prohibition on home built cars and non-replica kits.

    All assembled vehicles, including replicas, must now be inspected for safety by an ASE certified master mechanic before they can be titled, but otherwise the rules are once again similar to what they were prior to 2013. I wouldn't be too alarmed by the passage regarding "federally required safety components required during the year in which the vehicle was assembled." The ASE inspection forms seem to indicate this refers only to that safety equipment which would actually be subject to a Texas safety inspection. That would include turn signals, for instance, but would not include airbags.

    The documentation requirements for homebuilts remain a bit murky, but it looks like the 818 should have no further trouble in Texas, at least the street version. There is one clause in the new rules which might cause difficulty for 818R builders, depending on the documentation they put together: "A vehicle designed by a manufacturer for on-track racing is not eligible for title." That's probably not terribly enforceable, but forewarned is forearmed.

    The Roadster should be easy enough, given the rules have always been more lenient towards replicas, but even the GTM should be covered by the new regulations.

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