Can an off-road vehicle (ORV), including an ORV utility vehicle or 4-wheel ATV "quad," be modified for on-road registration?

Off-Road Vehicles Cannot Be Registered For On-Road Use

Vehicles manufactured as an off-road vehicle (ORV) cannot be modified and titled as an assembled vehicle for on-road use.  A vehicle manufactured as an ORV, even if the owner added accessories such as lights, windshield, and street legal tires, does not qualify as an assembled vehicle, including a low-speed assembled vehicle, because:

●  It was not built from new or used parts by someone other than a manufacturer, and

●  It was not altered or modified to the extent that it no longer reflects its original manufacturer configuration.

ORV manufacturers state their vehicles are not designed for on-road use and include a statement on their Manufacturer Certificate of Origin (MCO) that the vehicle was built for off-road use only. ORVs that cannot be titled and registered for on-road use include:

a)  4-wheel and 6-wheel ORV utility vehicles.  These units look like small trucks with a roof.  Examples include the Polaris Ranger, John Deere Gator, Kawasaki Mule, Yamaha Viking, Honda Pioneer, and Kubota RTV.

b)  4-wheel all-terrain vehicles (ATVs).  Often called "quads," these are units with handlebars and a seat straddled by the operator.

c)  Dune buggies manufactured for off-road use only.

d)  Gray Market off-road "mini trucks."  These are imported as ORVs rather than motor vehicles.  It is not possible to upgrade them to meet U.S. EPA emission standards and DOT safety standards.  They can only be titled as an ORV.  Examples include the Suzuki Carry, Subaru Sambar, Honda ACTY, Mazda Scrum, and Daihatsu Hijet.

e) Ex-military Humvees.  The Federal government mandates that Humvees are restricted to off-road use only.  See below for more information about Humvees.

Vehicles whose MCO show the vehicle was built to federal low speed vehicle standards may be titled as a low speed vehicle using the year, make, and VIN shown on the MCO.

Trail bikes (2-wheel motorcycles) may be upgraded for on-road use.

Related Documents and Topics




If you did not find the information you need, enter a descriptive word or phrase in the Search field located in the upper right corner. Or send us an e-mail by clicking on “Contact the Secretary of State” also in the upper right corner and we will help you get the information you need.