The procedures of applying for a Massachusetts custom car registration as well as antique license plates are conducted through the state Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV). The MA RMV will issue a registration for custom cars or antique plates depending on the type of motor vehicle motorists own, once they submit the required documentation to the department.

Applicants must know the difference between a vintage ride and custom-built vehicle in order to complete the process properly. To find out more about how to register custom vehicles or obtain an antique car registration in MA, continue reading below.

Definition of a Custom or Antique Vehicle in Massachusetts

Under MA antique license plate rules, an antique vehicle is a car manufactured at least 25 years ago, which is maintained for use in exhibitions, parades and other public events.

Massachusetts RMV issues custom car registrations to owners of vehicles of a model year at least 25 years old, cars that were produced after 1948 and have been altered from their original design.

Massachusetts laws also distinguish between replica vehicles, which are defined as cars assembled by new or used components that resemble an earlier model and year ride, and specially-constructed cars classified as reconstructed vehicles whose exterior does not replicate any other auto.

In addition to this, a custom auto registration in Massachusetts will also be necessary for kit cars or vehicles whose parts were sold and assembled by the buyer into a complete car, and street rods or cars manufactured before 1949, which have been altered or constructed from non-original materials.

Steps in the Massachusetts Registration Process

When obtaining Massachusetts antique car tags, you may be required to submit an application form along with a certification and affidavit confirming your vehicle’s age and purpose.

Note that you may even request a year-of-manufacture plate, which is a type of registration plate issued in the exact year of manufacture of your antique ride, only if you prove eligible for the procedure. Unlike the process of applying for vintage license plates, the procedure for registering a custom car in MA will require you to complete the following steps:

  • Fill out and submit an RMV-1 form.
  • Present a completed Application for Replacement of Vehicle Identification Number with the assigned VIN included in the form (if applicable).
  • Submit the previous certificate of title.

When issuing a registration for a custom car to owners of replica motor vehicles, MA RMV will also require them to submit the certificate of origin from the manufacturer, as well as the bill of sale or invoice for the replica kit. Owners of kit cars will not be able to obtain a registration or sell their ride unless they apply for a new title and pass the RMV’s inspection procedure.

Fees to Register a Custom or Antique Vehicle in Massachusetts

Arranging payment for custom or Massachusetts antique vehicle registration fees is generally necessary to finalize the registration procedure. Prices may vary depending on the type of vehicle motorists wish to register.

For instance, drivers requesting an antique car registration may need to provide payment for a $30 registration fee and a $20 special price. Since fees are subject to change without notice, contact a nearby RMV office in MA and inquire about the exact cost pertaining to your case.

Note: When contacting an RMV office, check whether you need to apply for a renewal of your custom registration documents, as is the case with your standard car registration renewal procedure.

Last updated on Monday, March 9 2020.