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  • Custom Built Car Registration in Arizona

    AZ Custom Built Car Registration

    If you've finally finished building your own custom vehicle after spending long nights waiting for parts and toiling in the garage, it's time to let the Motor Vehicle Division (MVD) have a look.

    A custom-built car is subject to the same registration and title fees as any other vehicle (see below), but an inspection of the vehicle will also be needed to ensure that it is safe for use on the open road and that none of its parts were stolen.

    To find an inspection office near you, call the MVD Customer Service Call Center at (602) 255-0072 (Phoenix), (520) 629-9808 (Tucson), or (800) 251-5866 (rest of Arizona).

    The inspection fee is $50; however, additional fees many apply under certain circumstances. Ask your inspection office about fees when you call for an appointment

    At the inspection, you may be asked to produce bills of sale or receipts for all the component parts you used to assemble your creation.

    First-time Title and Registration

    First, make an appointment at the MVD, as the process must be done there. Second, fill out the Title and Registration Application (form 96-0236). Third, gather the signed and notarized vehicle title (if appropriate), lien release (if appropriate), applicable papers (Power of Attorney, etc.), and fees.

    The title fee is $4. The registration fee is $8, and the air quality research fee is a mere $1.50.

    The variable fee comes in the form of the vehicle license tax (VLT), which is assessed instead of the personal property tax that many other states charge. This tax is based on the manufacturer's base retail price of the automobile, but takes into account amortization, so you will pay a little less to register your vehicle each year.

    If you are interested in the math, it is best to work with an example. Let's say the sum of your car's parts is $25,000. The MVD will take 60% of that value and reduce it 16.25% for each year that the vehicle has been registered in Arizona (the state will depreciate it only 15% if it was registered before August 1, 1998).

    The MVD then divides that number by 100. The quotient is multiplied by $2.80 if it is a new vehicle and $2.89 if it is a used vehicle. So your $25,000 automobile would have a VLT of $420 in the first year and $363.06 in the second. See how easy that was!

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