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  • Custom Built Car Registration in Arkansas

    Custom-Built Car Registration in Arkansas

    Custom-built cars are so popular in Arkansas that you can get a specialty license plate specifically for your street rod.

    While you can have a lot of fun with your custom-built cars because they're a great hobby, they must be street legal and meet the specific requirements of the Arkansas Vehicle Code. In addition, you'll have to apply for a title and registration with the Arkansas Office of Motor Vehicle (OMV).

    This page covers the process of registering and titling your custom-built vehicle, street rod, or antique car. Continue reading to learn exactly how to get your custom vehicle legally operating on the roads of Arkansas.

    Registering Your Custom-Built Vehicle

    To register your custom car in Arkansas, like any car, you'll need to prove ownership to your local Office of Motor Vehicle (OMV) office. To proceed, you'll need to keep the following in mind:

    • Be prepared to show a bill of sale to prove ownership; the vehicle identification numbers (VIN) must match your paperwork.
    • If you put your custom car together with major parts from several different vehicles, you'll be required to complete an Affidavit of Reconstruction for a Salvage Motor Vehicle.
    • The Arkansas OMV will request that you show receipts for your parts you used to construct your vehicle, and vehicle specifications to prove its history. Good record-keeping is a must.

    The typical time for the AR OMV to process a vehicle title is approximately 3 weeks. However, you should contact your local AR OMV office to find out exactly how long it'll take for your custom vehicle.

    Street Rod Specialty License Plates

    Your custom-built car may quality for a special license plate in Arkansas. To meet the criteria, your custom vehicle must:

    • Be a 1948 or older model.
    • Built to resemble a vehicle model older than 1949.
    • Has been altered from the original design OR has been reconstructed from materials other than the original materials used from the factory.

    Antique Cars

    There is a significant difference between a street rod and an antique vehicle.

    Antique license plates are issued for vehicles 25 years or older; antiques are unaltered from original manufacturer specs.

    To qualify as an antique vehicle in Arkansas, the vehicle must essentially have the same specifications today as it did when it was delivered from the factory.

    You'll also need to:

    • Complete an affidavit for an Antique Vehicle license.
    • Show the vehicle's registration or another proof of ownership that contains the year, make, model, and vehicle identification number (VIN), if available.
      • If no title is available, a proper bill of sale will suffice.
      • If the vehicle is comprised of parts from multiple sources, you may submit bills of sale for the major parts.
    • Pay the required $7 registration fees for an antique vehicle.


    1. The bills of sale must include the source, as well as the serial numbers from the motor or body.
    2. If you are only able to provide 1 bill of sale, the Arkansas DMV will request that you use the Bonded Title Procedures to obtain a title for your custom vehicle.
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