Special Vehicles in New Mexico
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With its beautiful scenery, New Mexico certainly lends itself to outdoor activities. It's no wonder, then, that vehicles such as snowmobiles and all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) are widely popular in the state.
So, let's take a look a closer look at these vehicles.
Let's begin by looking at how New Mexico legislators have defined the various categories.
An off-highway motor vehicle is defined as a motor vehicle designed by the manufacturer for operation exclusively off the highway or road. Included in this category are the following:
All-Terrain Vehicle (ATV)
An ATV is defined as a motor vehicle 50 inches or less in width, having an unladen dry weight of 1,000 pounds or less, traveling on three or more low-pressure tires, having a seat designed to be straddled by the operator, and handlebar-type steering control.
An off-highway motorcycle is defined as a motor vehicle traveling on not more than two tires, having a seat designed to be straddled by the operator, and a handlebar-type steering control.
A snowmobile is defined as a motor vehicle designed for travel on snow or ice, steered and supported in whole or in part by skis, belts, cleats, runners, or low-pressure tires.
Off-highway motor vehicles need to be registered at a Motor Vehicle Division field office at a cost of $53 for the initial registration ($50 thereafter). (See our registration sections for details on the process.)
Your registration will need to be renewed every two years.
Off-highway vehicles also need to be titled using the same process outline in our Title Transfers section.
Out of State Visitors
A non-resident permit is required to ride on public lands. This applies to:
- All-terrain vehicles (ATVs)
- Dirt bikes
- Off-road vehicles
Purchase a permit at any NM Department of Game and Fish office. You have the option of a two-year permit ($48) or a 90-day permit ($18).
If you're over 18, you're not required to have any special training or wear any specific items when driving these vehicles.
All riders under 18, however, must wear a helmet and eye gear protection. Those in this category must also have an off-highway motor vehicle safety permit from a state-approved organization.
Riders between the ages of 10 and 18 must have a parent, legal guardian, or a licensed driver over 18 supervising their riding. However, this doesn't apply if you're at least 13 and have a valid motorcycle license. Or, if you're at least 15 and have a valid driver's license, instructional permit, or provisional license.
Riders under 10 may only ride age-appropriate off-highway vehicles while being supervised by a parent, legal guardian, or a state-approved safety training instructor.
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
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- ATV Title and Registration Requirements