New Mexico law requires that motor vehicle owners must register their vehicle with the New Mexico Motor Vehicle Division before taking it on the road. Both new and second-hand vehicles must be registered, regardless of whether they are purchased from a dealer or an individual. In addition, new residents who have registered their vehicle in another state must register their vehicle in New Mexico. The initial vehicle registration must be done in person, and registration renewals must be done annually, either in person, online or by telephone.
You should register your vehicle immediately after acquiring it. New residents should register within 60 days.
If you have purchased the vehicle from a dealer, the dealer will take care of all the paper and hand over the registration documents to you.
If you are registering a motor vehicle in New Mexico for the first time, you must complete the following steps:
- Get your vehicle inspected for emissions only if you live in Bernalillo County or if you drive into Bernalillo for 60 days or more in the year. Inspections must be performed at an inspection station. Find out more about vehicle inspections in New Mexico, or Air Care Stations near you. Once the vehicle passes inspection, you will be issued an inspection certification.
- Complete an Application for Vehicle Title and Registration.
- The current title or any other ownership documents.
- proof of identity of your New Mexico residency and your New Mexico residence address.
- Visit your MVD Field Offices, and bring the completed title/registration form with you, along with the inspection certification. In addition, you will need to provide proof of insurance, and the odometer reading, if the vehicle is less than 10 years old. New Mexico requires you to have a liability insurance policy of a minimum total of $60,000, including $25,000 coverage for injury to or the death of one person, $50,000 for personal injury or death of 2 or more persons and $10,000 for property damage in any one accident.
- For vehicles that have been registered in another state, you must also bring the original, out-of-state title. If the title is unavailable, bring the registration document, along with proof of sales tax payment.
When registering your vehicle at the MVD Field office, you will be required to pay certain fees, typically as follows:
- The registration fee, which varies depending on the manufacturer's model year or the vehicle's total weight. Generally, the registration fee will be between $21.00 to $62.00 for one year and $42.00 to $124.00 for a two year registration.
- Title application fee.
There may be additional fees when you register, depending on your county. Contact the MVD Field Offices for specific requirements.
RENEWING YOUR VEHICLE REGISTRATION
Owners of motor vehicles in New Mexico are required to renew their vehicle registration annually, and can do so in person, online or by mail or telephone. See our Registration Renewal section for complete details.
- If you are a non-resident active duty member of the U.S. Armed Forces or a non-resident full-time student attending a New Mexico college or university, you are not required to title or register your vehicle. You should carry your home registration while traveling.
- The process for registering a motorcycle is generally the same as a car registration; however, there are different procedures for boat registration and custom car registration.
- Auto Insurance is needed to legally operate all vehicles in New Mexico.
- See also Renewing Your Vehicle Registration.
- See also Title Transfers and Car Insurance.