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Other Vehicle Registrations in Tennessee

SUMMARY: How to Register a Special Vehicle Type in Tennessee

Some vehicle types other than standard cars and trucks must still be registered with the TN DOR. Some, like custom-built cars and low-speed vehicles, require specialized paperwork and additional steps prior to registration. Other vehicles—such as ATVs and snowmobiles—are exempt from registration, but may still require titling.

Tennessee has plenty of terrain perfect for all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and snowmobiles, and you'll probably want a utility trailer to help you haul them to your recreation destination.

If you have one of these special vehicles, it's important to know the rules and regulations for vehicle registration that the Tennessee Department of Revenue (DOR) has in place.

If you have another vehicle, you may also be interested in reading some of our other pages:

All-Terrain Vehicles in TN

Since you can't operate your all-terrain vehicle (ATV) on public roads and highways, you don't have to register it. You do have to title it, though.

To obtain the ATV title in your name you will need to visit your local TN DOR office in person. You may need to provide:

You will need to pay a fee of $11 for your title certificate.

Snowmobiles

You'll be pleased to find out you don't have to register or title a snowmobile in Tennessee. However, if you ever plan to sell your snowmobile, it's always nice to have proof that it's yours, i.e., you'll need a title.

If you purchase your snowmobile from a dealership, you'll most likely receive a title in your name. If you purchase it from an individual, you may want to contact your local Tennessee county clerk's office to ask if they'll work out a way to issue the snowmobile a title in your name.

Utility Trailers

Utility trailers do not have to be registered, but you can get a license plate for your trailer for $12.25.

Before you head out on the road, make sure that your trailer meets all Tennessee DOR requirements. You will need to have it inspected for adequate equipment, including:

  • Brakes and braking system.
  • Axles.
  • Tires.
  • Wheels and rims.
  • Safety chains.
  • Fenders/mud flaps.
  • Lights and reflectors.

You can also check out our article on How To Pull A Trailer.

Low-Speed Vehicles in Tennessee

A low-speed vehicle is defined as a vehicle with 4 wheels that has a capacity to run between 20 and 25 MPH―for instance, an electric vehicle you can drive around in your neighborhood. The vehicle is allowed to be driven only on roads with a maximum speed limit of 35 MPH or less.

Low-speed vehicles must be titled and registered in Tennessee. You'll need to visit your local TN Department of Revenue office and submit:

NOTE: Golf carts do not qualify as low-speed vehicles, and do not need to be titled or registered in Tennessee.

Recreational Vehicles and Motorhomes

If you have a recreational vehicle (RV) or motorhome in Tennessee, remember to have it registered and titled properly before you take it for a drive. You will follow the same process as you would to register a regular car; however, fees may vary.

Visit our page on Registering a Car in Tennessee for more information.

Custom-Built Cars

If you custom-built your car in Tennessee, you'll need to first apply for a rebuilt title. To do this, you may need to provide the Department of Revenue with:

Contact the Tennessee DOR directly for specific information.

Once you have your title certificate, you're ready to register your car. Follow the same procedure as outlined on our Tennessee Car Registration page.

Scooters and Mopeds in Tennessee

The state of Tennessee categorizes scooters, mopeds, and motorized bicycles differently:

  • You must register a scooter in Tennessee IF its engine size is 50 cc or more. The registration process is the same as registering a motorcycle.
  • Mopeds and motorized bicycles DO NOT have to be registered, but you can register yours voluntarily.

More information, including definitions of each type of vehicle, is available on our scooters and mopeds page.

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