To register custom cars in New Mexico or vehicles that have a historic value, applicants will be required to meet a specific set of requirements set forth by the state Motor Vehicle Division (MVD). Note that applying for an antique vehicle registration document or a registration for custom cars are procedures that differ from the standard car registration process. Find out more about the process of registering a vintage car and the procedure to register custom vehicles in New Mexico by reading the sections outlined below.

Definition of a Custom or Antique Vehicle in New Mexico

Before requesting a New Mexico custom car registration or a historic vehicle registration, applicants must review the definitions of these special types of vehicles as set forth in the state motor vehicle laws. Vintage license plates and registration, for example, will only be issued for vehicles older than 34 years of age. These historic cars are termed as horseless carriages and they can only be used as collector’s items that are driven during special educational events such as exhibitions and parades. Custom vehicle registrations, on the other hand, are issued for both specially constructed vehicles and reconstructed vehicles. Specially constructed cars are either classified as homemade or replica vehicles built from scrap materials, parts from other vehicles and shop built components. Reconstructed vehicles are rebuilt from factory parts and include an already existing factory-built chassis.

Steps in the New Mexico Registration Process

The process of registering a custom car in New Mexico and the procedure to obtain a vintage vehicle registration and plates vary with regards to the documents that must be submitted and the number of steps that must be completed. For instance, an NM registration for custom vehicles can be obtained only after submitting your custom car to a VIN inspection at a local MVD office. Applicants can afterward finalize the procedure to obtain custom auto registrations by submitting the following items to the division:

  • Filled out Affirmation for Specially Constructed or Reconstructed Vehicle and Vehicle Equipment Affirmation forms
  • Bills of sale and invoices for the major vehicle components
  • A certificate of title for the chassis (if the vehicle was reconstructed with a factory-built chassis)
  • Manufacturer’s certificate of origin (if required)
  • A certificate confirming the vehicle weight
  • Payment for the applicable fees

Note: To learn whether or not additional custom car registration requirements apply to your specific circumstances, contact a nearby MVD location.

Unlike the process of registering custom car projects, outlined above, NM antique car registrations can be obtained by completing fewer steps. Applicants can apply for vintage car tags by submitting the Horseless Carriage Certification (Form MVD-10056) along with the current vehicle title and bill of sale. The MVD will process the application for historic vehicle plates after receiving payment for the applicable registration fees and any required taxes.

Fees to Register a Custom or Antique Vehicle in New Mexico

When registering a custom vehicle in New Mexico or ordering antique license plates, applicants will be required to pay several types of fees. The total cost varies depending on the type of procedure you are completing. For example, the NM custom car registration process generally includes the standard registration fee, which is determined based on the vehicle weight, as well as additional taxes and costs. Obtaining a vintage car registration, on the other hand, is a procedure with a set fee. To register your vehicle as a horseless carriage and obtain vintage license plates, you will be required to pay an initial fee of $17.50 and a $7.50 car registration renewal fee on a regular five-year basis.

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