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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter #1
Learned Gentlemen,

What are some websites that provide the most authoritative - but also helpful and useful for the definitions of and guidance for "street legal" in the US ?

I know that some things vary by state and by jurisdiction. Others do not.

Something has prompted the question: I have been to a number of car meets/gatherings that featured RHD vehicles. And they had current Georgia license plates on them.

Is that actually kosher, or did they lie to the Georgia DMV (or whatever government entity takes care of car registration) ?

I have seen suggestions before that run along the line of "Check with your own state's ... for more complete information". I have looked at (for) information at State of Georgia websites. I have also checked the NHTSA's site. I have found the NHTSA's site to be annoying. They have tons and tons of info, but IMO, seem to have it expressed in the absolutely least concise manner possible. That's not helpful.

Whatever help you might provide would be very much appreciated.

Thanks,

Dan
 

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Premium Member
2010-2012 Range Rover MkIII / L322
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4,635 Posts
Re: "Street Legal" - What Are The Rules of The Road ?

Sounds like a typical 'grey' area, Dan. I doubt there is a true answer, just how one interprets what is written on paper. :doh:

I've got a local customer who has taken a standard Disco 2 Td5, spent around 10k on engine upgrades from Twisted Performance, lifted the rear by 2 inches and the front by 1, added ZU rims with a serious set of off road tyres, ripped out the rear of the car to store a second set of wheels, removed Self Levelling Suspension in favour of coils, ripped out the ACE system etc, etc... How does one interpret that as road legal? I doubt he has it insured as such, as it wouldn't be covered. It's all this bolt on [email protected] that the aftermarket companies flog every month in the LRM/LRO to people with more money than sense. :snooty:

KISS - Keep It Standard, Stupid! :lol:
 

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Premium Member
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Re: "Street Legal" - What Are The Rules of The Road ?

detroit_pierogi said:
I have been to a number of car meets/gatherings that featured RHD vehicles. And they had current Georgia license plates on them.

Is that actually kosher, or did they lie to the Georgia DMV (or whatever government entity takes care of car registration) ?
Are you just questioning the steering wheel on the correct side thing? Or legislation relating to modified vehicles.
Because I'm sure there are many RHD motors in the states, Jay Leno has a few and don't Rovers North have a rhd 110?

Don't some (US) states have no annual roadworthiness inspection? Part if the problem over there is that regulations differ from state to state, diesel cars used to be ilegal in California and four or five other states.
 

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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter #4
Re: "Street Legal" - What Are The Rules of The Road ?

The RHD thing is what prompted my question, but I have wondered about the whole 'street legal' thing for a good while.

I don't know if any states have road worthiness tests / inspections. I have never heard anyone complain about one - and if someone had a problem with such an inspection, the first thing they would do would be to complain about it. (That is, I believe, both funny and true).

One big problem is that there is so much room for circumventing the rules that are in place. Tales of 'gray market' vehicles abound. As do theories about what would happen if something 'bad' were to happen. Something Bad = God-awful car accident involving one of the vehicles in question. Strictly speaking, nothing is really illegal until some jurisdiction's legal systems deems it to be illegal. And civil actions (i.e. lawsuits) have a broader scope than that.
 

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JACK'S GRANDAD
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9,242 Posts
Re: "Street Legal" - What Are The Rules of The Road ?

Dan,
I have run into this a few times mate.
Basically, just because it isn't actually stated as being legal or DOT approved, does not make it illegal.
As far as annual inspections go, I had a guy that wanted full hydro steering on a road registered rig. I tried talking him out of it, as there is no physical connection between the steering wheel and the tie rod! He insisted, so then I called the local inspection station I use and they said it is not listed anywhere in their books! So long as the heims/tie rod ends are tight, that's it!
Bead lock wheels fall under the same category, not one state so far as I know has a law to say they are illegal.
You can register LHD cars in England, so I see no issues with doing the opposite over here.
I work by the simple theory of if it is safe, then it is fair game. I run long arm suspension on the Jeep, hydro assist steering, 37's, and so on. It is fully registered and annually inspected. All the insurance company cared about was the fact of it being "road worthy". And with the wife driving it more than me, it is more than just "road worthy".
Basically, for something to be "illegal" a law has to be passed stating so. I have won more than one ticket in court when the judge could not find any rule that said the particular "law" broken was not on paper!
As my old lawyer in England once told me......If cops knew the law, lawyers wouldn't have a job! :thumb:
Hope this helps.

Martin
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Re: "Street Legal" - What Are The Rules of The Road ?

Thanks, Martin.

There is a not-too-busy dmw right down the road from my office. I suppose that I could go there and assail them with questions.

I wonder if the rules for importing a vehicle (that is ok to import, according to 'the list') are more stringent then those for registering one that is already here.
 
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