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NC Streetrod Titles


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I'm new to the street rod owner world and I am trying to get my 1929 Model A pick up titled. It is a street rod with a chevy drivetrain and I am being told by the inspector that I need to register it as a custom build because I don't have the original engine serial tag for proof that the truck I am claiming is the truck I actually have. Is this true? The street rod is from NY originally and NY does not issue titles for vehicles 1972 and older. I am just trying to get some information so I can figure out if I am getting the raw deal from the NC DOT. If you could, please post links too so I can have proof. Thank you very much!!!

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That might have been true prior to 8-5-09. They just changed the law on this parts were effective 8-5-09 and parts of it are effective 10-1-09.

I am not yet very familiar with all of the ins and outs of the new law. Here it is:

http://www.ncleg.net/Sessions/2009/Bills/Senate/PDF/S820v6.pdf

The text is as follows:

GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF NORTH CAROLINA

SESSION 2009

SESSION LAW 2009-405

SENATE BILL 820

*S820-v-6*

AN ACT TO CREATE NEW MOTOR VEHICLE TITLING AND REGISTRATION

CATEGORIES FOR MOTOR VEHICLES CLASSIFIED AS REPLICA VEHICLES,

STREET RODS, AND CUSTOM VEHICLES, AND TO MAKE CORRESPONDING

CHANGES.

The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:

SECTION 1. G.S. 20-4.01(43) reads as rewritten:

"(43) Specially Constructed Vehicles. – Vehicles of a type required to be

registered hereunder not originally constructed under a distinctive name,

make, model, or type by a generally recognized manufacturer of vehicles

and not materially altered from their original construction.Motor vehicles

required to be registered under this Chapter and that fit within one of the

following categories:

a. Replica vehicle. – A vehicle, excluding motorcycles, that when

assembled replicates an earlier year, make, and model vehicle.

b. Street rod vehicle. – A vehicle, excluding motorcycles, manufactured

prior to 1949 that has been materially altered or has a body

constructed from nonoriginal materials.

c. Custom-built vehicle. – A vehicle, including motorcycles,

reconstructed or assembled by a nonmanufacturer from new or used

parts that has an exterior that does not replicate or resemble any other

manufactured vehicle. This category also includes any motorcycle

that was originally sold unassembled and manufactured from a kit or

that has been materially altered or that has a body constructed from

nonoriginal materials."

SECTION 2. Part 3 of Article 3 of Chapter 20 of the General Statutes is amended

by adding a new section to read:

"§ 20-53.1. Specially constructed vehicle certificate of title and registration.

(a) Specially constructed vehicles shall be titled in the following manner:

(1) Replica vehicles shall be titled as the year, make, and model of the vehicle

intended to be replicated. A label of "Replica" shall be applied to the title

and registration card. All replica vehicle titles shall be labeled "Specially

Constructed Vehicle."

(2) The model year of a street rod vehicle shall continue to be recognized as the

manufacturer's assigned model year. The manufacturer's name shall continue

to be used as the make with a label of "Street Rod" applied to the title and

registration card. All street rod vehicle titles shall be labeled "Specially

Constructed Vehicle."

(3) Custom-built vehicles shall be titled and registered showing the make as

"Custom-built," and the year the vehicle was built shall be the vehicle model

year. All custom-built vehicle titles shall be labeled "Specially Constructed

Vehicle."

(B) Inoperable vehicles may be titled, but no registration may be issued until such time

as the License and Theft Bureau inspects the vehicle to ensure it is substantially assembled.

Once a vehicle has been verified as substantially assembled pursuant to an inspection by the

License and Theft Bureau, the Commissioner shall title the vehicle by classifying it in the

proper category and collecting all highway use taxes applicable to the value of the car at the

time the vehicle is retitled to a proper classification, as described in this section.

Page 2 Session Law 2009-405 SL2009-0405

© Motor vehicle certificates of title and registration cards issued pursuant to this

section shall be labeled in accordance with this section. As used in this section, "labeled" means

that the title and registration card shall contain a designation that discloses if the vehicle is

classified as any of the following:

(1) Specially constructed vehicle.

(2) Inoperable vehicle."

SECTION 3. G.S. 20-70 is amended by adding a new subsection to read:

"© The notification and registration requirements contained in subsections (a) and (B)

of this section regarding an engine change shall be required only if the motor vehicle into

which a new engine is installed uses an engine number as the sole means to identify the

vehicle."

SECTION 4. G.S. 20-4.01 is amended by adding a new subdivision to read:

"(15a) Inoperable Vehicle. – A motor vehicle that is substantially disassembled and

for this reason is mechanically unfit or unsafe to be operated or moved upon

a public street, highway, or public vehicular area."

SECTION 5. G.S. 20-53 reads as rewritten:

"§ 20-53. Application for specially constructed, reconstructed, or foreign vehicle.

(a) In the event the vehicle to be registered is a specially constructed, reconstructed, or

foreign vehicle, such fact shall be stated in the application, and with reference to every foreign

vehicle which has been registered outside of this State, the owner shall surrender to the

Division all registration cards and cards, certificates of title or notarized copies of original titles

on vehicles 35 model years old and older, or other evidence of such foreign registration as may

be in his possession or under his control, except as provided in subsection (B) hereof. After

initial review, the Division shall return to the owner any original titles presented on vehicles 35

model years old and older appropriately marked indicating that the title has been previously

submitted.

(B) Where, in the course of interstate operation of a vehicle registered in another state, it

is desirable to retain registration of said vehicle in such other state, such applicant need not

surrender, but shall submit for inspection said evidence of such foreign registration, and the

Division in its discretion, and upon a proper showing, shall register said vehicle in this State but

shall not issue a certificate of title for such vehicle.

©, (d) Repealed by Session Laws 1965, c. 734, s. 2.

(e) No title shall be issued to an initial applicant for (i) out-of-state vehicles that are 35

model years old or older or (ii) a specially constructed vehicle prior to the completion of a

vehicle verification conducted by the License and Theft Bureau of the Division of Motor

Vehicles. These verifications shall be conducted as soon as practical. For an out-of-state

vehicle that is 35 model years old or older, this inspection shall consist of verifying the public

vehicle identification number to ensure that it matches the vehicle and ownership documents.

No covert vehicle identification numbers are to be examined on an out-of-state vehicle 35

model years or older unless the inspector develops probable cause to believe that the ownership

documents or public vehicle identification number presented does not match the vehicle being

examined. However, upon such application and the submission of any required documentation,

the Division shall be authorized to register the vehicle pending the completion of the

verification of the vehicle. The registration shall be valid for one year but shall not be renewed

unless and until the vehicle examination has been completed.

(f) If a vehicle owner desires a vehicle title classification change, he or she may, upon

proper application, be eligible for a reclassification."

SECTION 6. Part 3 of Article 3 of Chapter 20 of the General Statutes is amended

by adding a new section to read:

"§ 20-53.3. Appeal of specially constructed vehicle classification determination to Vehicle

Classification Review Committee.

(a) Any person aggrieved by the Division's determination of the appropriate vehicle

classification for a specially constructed vehicle may request review of that determination by

the Vehicle Classification Review Committee. This review shall be initiated by completing a

Vehicle Classification Review Request and returning the request to the Division. The Vehicle

Classification Review Request shall be made on a form provided by the Division. The decision

of the Review Committee may be appealed to the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles.

(B) The Vehicle Classification Review Committee shall consist of five members as

follows:

SL2009-0405 Session Law 2009-405 Page 3

(1) Two members shall be personnel of the License and Theft Bureau of the

Division of Motor Vehicles appointed by the Commissioner.

(2) One member shall be a member of the public with expertise in antique or

specially constructed vehicles appointed by the Commissioner from a list of

nominees provided by the Antique Automobile Club of America.

(3) One member shall be a member of the public with expertise in antique or

specially constructed vehicles appointed by the Commissioner from a list of

nominees provided by the Specialty Equipment Market Association.

(4) One member shall be a member of the public with expertise in antique or

specially constructed vehicles appointed by the Commissioner from a list of

nominees provided by the National Corvette Restorers Society.

© Members of the Vehicle Classification Review Committee shall serve staggered

two-year terms. Initial appointments shall be made on or before October 1, 2009. The initial

appointment of one of the members from the License and Theft Bureau and the member

nominated by the Antique Automobile Club of America shall be for one year. The initial

appointments of the remaining members shall be for two years. At the expiration of these initial

terms, appointments shall be for two years. A member of the Committee may be removed at

any time by unanimous vote of the remaining four members. Vacancies shall be filled in the

manner set out in subsection (B) of this section."

SECTION 7. Sections 3 and 5 of this act are effective when this becomes law. The

remainder of this act becomes effective October 1, 2009.

In the General Assembly read three times and ratified this the 28th day of July, 2009.

s/ Walter H. Dalton

President of the Senate

s/ Joe Hackney

Speaker of the House of Representatives

s/ Beverly E. Perdue

Governor

Approved 2:03 p.m. this 5th day of August, 2009

Edited by MCHinson (see edit history)
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So, since my truck is a 1929 (prior to 1949) and it has been materially changed ("new" engine/trans/rearend), I would have to title and register it as a 1929 Model A Pickup Streetrod? I hope that's the case because that is a lot easier than having to bond it and then register it as a 1993 Replica Model A which is what I have been told before. I just have to wait until October 1st for this to happen. Am I reading that right???

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DMV probably is trying to educate their people about the new law. You will probably get lots of conflicting answers. I would think that it would be titled as a 1929 Ford Street Rod.

Under 20-53.1

(2) The model year of a street rod vehicle shall continue to be recognized as the

manufacturer's assigned model year. The manufacturer's name shall continue

to be used as the make with a label of "Street Rod" applied to the title and

registration card. All street rod vehicle titles shall be labeled "Specially

Constructed Vehicle."

I don't know when you bought the vehicle. The only problem that I see is that you might have to pay a penalty for not obtaining the title within 28 days of transferring the vehicle.

§ 20‑73. New owner must get new certificate of title.

(a) Time Limit. – A person to whom a vehicle is transferred, whether by purchase or otherwise, must apply to the Division for a new certificate of title. An application for a certificate of title must be submitted within 28 days after the vehicle is transferred.

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The truck is actually already registered and I applied for the title almost 2 years ago. My tags expired last October and I can't renew them until the title clears. There is apparently already a title for it, but they won't release it because the 6 digit number serial number of the Model A's doesn't conform with NC VIN numbers. When I went to get the truck inspected to get my title released, the inspector told me I had to get the truck title changed to a 1993 (the year it was initially built) "Custom Build Replica" car because I don't have the original engine with the ID tag on it in the truck (I don't have the ID tag at all either....). I'm assuming this was the procedure before the "Streetrod" annotation was instated for the titles. Hopefully, come October 1, I can call the inspector and get things finished up and re-register and title my truck as what it is....a 1929 Model A Pickup Streetrod. Thank you very much for the information you've provided. Being a newbie to this forum, I can tell you that its nice to feel wlecome and not beat down for being new. :D

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No problem. Glad to help. You actually have a better chance of getting "beat up" for being a streetrod owner than for being new here. AACA is dedicated to preserving antique autos. Normally some AACA folks are not very receptive to "street rod" questions, but old car folks are a pretty forgiving bunch. Best of luck with the street rod, but I hope to see you back here with an original antique car or truck question some day. Take care.

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What if you already have an NC title for a pre-49 car and are now street rodding it...once you apply for tags. do they still want to inspect it?.. I thought that only applied to titles not already an NC title. I recently applied for a title for a car (1942) that I purchased out of state and had to get it inspected before NC would give me a title.. but what if you already have a title and then decide to do upgrades on it???? any thoughts??

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There is no requirement for you to apply for a new "branded" title. If you want to change the title to a "Street Rod" branded title, you could, but I would not suggest it anytime in the near future. I would make sure that DMV has some time to get used to dealing with the new law before I gave them any opportunity to review one that already had an existing NC title.

So, I guess the answer is you are not required to change the title. I would not suggest it, unless you just want to do it.... and if you do, wait a while to let DMV get some experience in applying the new law.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I am a NC used car dealer and my understanding of the law (they make us take continuing education classes to renew your license each year) is that the titles get held up on any car older than 1975 that comes in from out of state.

If you brought a car in from NY and registered it in NC, you would get a license plate (if you fulfilled all the normal requirements), but the title would be held by an inspector until you brought the car in to have them verify the serial (VIN) number.

So if your car was using the original Model A engine number as it's serial number and you changed the engine, there is no nothing now on the car you are presenting to them with the original number, so they see it as a non-matching paperwork.

Another thing you might check is that Model A's usually had the original serial number stamped on the frame rails, so if your original number is still there you might have some luck convincing them to use that number to verify the out of state title.

I have bought old cars that already have a NC title and they come back right away without having to be verified, it's the cars from out of state that they check.

Edited by Bluesmobile (see edit history)
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Bluesmobile, the problem with Model A Ford's is that the frame serial number that you are talking about can only be seen if you remove the body from the frame.

Also, since the law just changed 2 days ago, your experience is now outdated. It will be interesting to see how the new law ends up being applied. It should be better than the past year or so with all of the different ideas that different inspectors had trying to apply the DMV policies that were not based on the law.

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  • 1 month later...

Ive got a question about all of this.

I have a 1930 model A sport coupe so dont rag me about the fact im about to ask about a dodge.

I have 1927 DB sedan and dont have a title. I want to keep it orginal and fix it up. I havn't touched a thing thus far and can get the serial number off the frame.

How do I go about getting a title for this car?

Thanks,

Corey

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04mustang,

I am assuming that you are a resident of North Carolina, because every state is different. Where did you buy the car? If it is an original NC Car and the seller had simply lost the title, it would be easy for the seller to get a duplicate title and then transfer it to you. If your seller had an out of state title, it is a little more difficult. If the previous "owner" did not have a title, and you are in NC, it will be much more difficult to obtain a title than it would have been before the law changed. Can you tell me more about your specific situation so I can give you some advice? You can post it here or send me a private message.

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I bought the car from my girlfriends grandfather (in NC). He didn't have a title but gave a bill of sale.

He owned it from about 1975 to recently. He bought it from a man in bladenboro NC. apparently that man owned the car for many years (20-30 or more?).

The car was originaly sold in NC from Wilmington. The grandfather found a plate on the floorboard that proved this.

But since all of these places are close to the SC line it could have been in SC at some point.

This is just about all I know about the history.

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  • 1 month later...

I know this don't apply to this spicific vehical but it might help someone down the road. I live in louisiana and if there is a visibal vin and you have a bill of sale you can get a title as long as there isn't a title on file in the the state. If there is a title on file than you have to contact the title owner and Have the title transfered. If there is no title on file than you have to have the car inspected by the State troopers office to proove the car and the vin are what you say it is.Than you bring the bill of sale that has to be notarised along with the physical inspection paper you got from the state troopers office to the DMV and they will issue a title with in a few weeks.

Now if there is no vin there is another process you have to go through that is almost identical to the process in the begining of this post. but the title will have Builder as the designated model. The rules ar on the Louisiana DMV website if any one is intrested that gives a much better explination than I did.there are a few different ways you can get a title down here in louisiana. I have used almost all of them and am in the process of getting a title on a 30 tudor right now. I will post my progress to aid future members.

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  • 1 year later...

Ok, here is my problem and have not received a definitive answer. I just purchased a 37 Chrysler Imperial with a NC title. Today I went to the DMV and they told me that I would receive a inoperable title because the car does not run, I was also told by the DMV inspector that I had one year to get it running and that since I was restoring the car it would be classified as something other than a 1937. Has anyone else gone through this same scenario? It seems to me that since the car already has an NC title it could just be transferred into my name with no questions?

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CruisinC,

Welcome to the AACA Discussion Forum.

I have not titled a car since the law changed, so I don't have any personal experience with the new law. Are you restoring the car, or are you building a streetrod? If you are a NC resident and you bought a car with an NC Title, and you are restoring the car, you should not have to go through too much trouble.

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  • 1 month later...

Here is an outfield approach-get tags and registration from Alabama-the tags are good for 99 years-

drive the hell out of your car, have fun on the way and thumb your nose at dmv.....

"Life is too short for all of the problems government causes...."

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