Special Vehicles in Michigan
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Many Michigan residents either own or are interested in buying a vehicle other than a car or motorcycle. So, let's take a look at some of these other types of transportation and fun.
Specifically, we'll examine how to register and title snowmobiles, all-terrain vehicles (ATVs), off-road vehicles (ORVs), and trailers.
With all the snow that falls in Michigan, snowmobiles are popular items. However, unless you're planning on operating your snowmobile strictly on private property or to ice fish, you'll need to register it. (There are also a few unique exceptions.)
Registrations cost $45 and are valid for three years. It will also cost you $45 to renew your registration.
Place the registration decal on the front of the vehicle.
Snowmobile owners catch a break here, as titles are not required. When you want to transfer ownership, just fill out the back of the registration. If you can't find the registration, complete a bill of sale instead.
You'll also need to obtain a snowmobile trail permit. These permits cost $35, are good for one year, and will expire on September 30. The permit sticker should be placed above the headlight .
Non-residents planning on using their snowmobiles on Michigan's public lands also need to have the permit.
Money from the sale of the permits is used for the snowmobile trails.
Let's start with the basics: According to Michigan lawmakers, ORVs and ATVs are motor vehicles that can be ridden over land, snow, and other terrain without the need of a road or trail. However, this does not mean snowmobiles; construction, farming, or logging vehicles used for work purposes; and fire, emergency, military, and police vehicles.
ORV and ATV Titles
While snowmobiles need to be registered but not titled, the opposite is true for ORVS and ATVs. Just to keep you on your toes.
The title procedure for these vehicles is basically the same as it is for cars, so simply follow the same guidelines. Titles cost $11.
ORV and ATV Permits
All ORVs/ATVS need to have an annual permit, issued by the DNR, unless the vehicle will be used exclusively on private property. The permits cost $16.25, and expire on March 31.
Non-residents using their ATVs/ORVs on the state's public land must also have the permit.
- Michigan Department of Natural Resources
- Grants, Contracts, and Customer Systems
- P.O. Box 30181
- Lansing, MI 48909
Be sure to place the permit decal in the proper spot.
Want to know more about Michigan ATV/ORV rules and procedures? Check out The Handbook of Michigan Off-Road Vehicle Laws. You may also call the DNR at (517) 373-1204 for more information.
Registration fees vary depending on the vehicle's weight, while the title fee is $15.
Other Topics in This Section
- Register Car
- Registration Renewal
- Registration & Insurance
- Replacing a Lost Registration
- RV & Motorhome Registration
- Custom Built Car Registration
- Boat Registration and Licenses
- Title Transfers
- Replacing a Lost Title
- Salvaged Vehicles
- Special Vehicles
- Drivers with Disabilities
- License Plates & Placards
- Smog & Emission Checks
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- Learn Your State’s Requirements for Snowmobile Titles and Registration
- You Built It, You Register It: Titling and Registering Custom-Built Vehicles
- Find Out How to Title and Register Your RV or Motorhome
- When Do You Need to Title and Register Your Trailer?
- ATV Title and Registration Requirements
We put a lot of effort into making our content helpful & accurate. Please let us know if you see something that isn't clear or correct; we are here to ease any frustrations you may have while navigating DMV topics. We are not a government agency, please reach out to your local DMV, insurance agent, or respective professional for further assistance on specific situations.