BJ42 import - CA registration (1 Viewer)

Joined
Sep 3, 2007
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Longmont, CO
I registered my 25-year exempt BJ42 this morning here in California. Was nervous that I was going to be crushed under a wave of idiocy, but actually seemed to go OK. Plates have to come from Sacramento, so there will be some additional scrutiny, but so far so good.

Anyway, as far as the inspection/verification was concerned, people have posted that the absence of the EPA sticker (even though its smog exempt) was going to be an issue. I solved it like this:

I took the EPA exemption form from customs, (along with the FMVSS exemption) folded them up so the logo's were outward and made them little "pockets" in the door jamb. When the DMV went looking for stickers they found those forms instead.

Thus, rather than checking "Missing" on the EPA sticker inspection, I got a "None: N/A". With luck this will satisfy everyone, we shall see, and I'll update it here. The inspector also noted it was a diesel, so hopefully there will be no issue.

The rest of the registration went fine, but took forever, as no one knew how to handle NZ paperwork. THey got it done, though.

:bounce:
 
Joined
Sep 12, 2004
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95570
Congrats!

My experience though is that the DMV will give you plates and register it, but they won't give you a CA title. Instead, a letter will come later from the 'technical compliance division' or somesuch asking for a letter from Toyota stating that it conforms to USDOT regs. That letter will never come, or will be inadequate. I had to copy all my import docs and send them to the DMV and then they sent me a CA title. That's my experience at least; YMMV.

Enjoy!
B
 
Joined
May 26, 2005
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Location
Boulder Creek, CA
Hello,
I took my 1981 BJ42 to the CA DMV with my import paperwork, bill of sale and submitted it, got my plates and reggie on the spot. Clerk said the DMV would send a letter to the country of export to determine if the truck was stolen or had leins, if the country of export reported no problems, title would follow. My title took about 4 months to arrive, all is well!
eric
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2005
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638
Location
Vancouver, Canada
Hello,
I took my 1981 BJ42 to the CA DMV with my import paperwork, bill of sale and submitted it, got my plates and reggie on the spot. Clerk said the DMV would send a letter to the country of export to determine if the truck was stolen or had leins, if the country of export reported no problems, title would follow. My title took about 4 months to arrive, all is well!
eric

I have a feeling that DMV compliance have seen enough of these now that they have finally gotten clued in. They used to be a nightmare.
 

tlaporte

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Pasadena, CA
My title followed plates in the mail by two days

Interesting. My experience (1983 HJ47 from Oz imported this year)

Congrats!

My experience though is that the DMV will give you plates and register it, but they won't give you a CA title. Instead, a letter will come later from the 'technical compliance division' or somesuch asking for a letter from Toyota stating that it conforms to USDOT regs. That letter will never come, or will be inadequate. I had to copy all my import docs and send them to the DMV and then they sent me a CA title. That's my experience at least; YMMV.

Enjoy!
B
 

tlaporte

SILVER Star
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Dec 17, 2003
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Pasadena, CA
My experience was very similar

This was roughly my experience, too. I first brought my paperwork to the DMV in June, prior to the truck's arrival, so that I would have a temporary tag in order to drive it home from the port. A DMV inspection was followed by a CHP inspection and a return trip to the DMV. On that last trip to the DMV I handed over all of my importation documents, which were packaged and sent to Sacramento. About six weeks later I got plates in the mail, and three days after that I got a CA title (which I was a very pleasant surprise).

The total process took about five months, but a good three months of that was spent waiting for my scheduled CHP appointment/inspection.

-- Tom

Congrats!

My experience though is that the DMV will give you plates and register it, but they won't give you a CA title. Instead, a letter will come later from the 'technical compliance division' or somesuch asking for a letter from Toyota stating that it conforms to USDOT regs. That letter will never come, or will be inadequate. I had to copy all my import docs and send them to the DMV and then they sent me a CA title. That's my experience at least; YMMV.

Enjoy!
B
 
Joined
Sep 3, 2007
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Longmont, CO
The DMV didn't give me plates, oddly... now I'm worried. They said plates would come within 30 days from sacramento.
 
Joined
Aug 26, 2010
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Petersburg, AK
Took my BJ42 and paperwork to DMV here in Alaska and had the tags, registration and title on the spot. All I needed was the import paperwork and bill of sale. Nice living in a place without all the paperwork hassles. Jim
 

sponger16

Nathan S.
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May 30, 2014
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Paso Robles California
So do I understand this right any BJ42 over 25 years I shouldn't have any trouble importing. That means I can get something in the mid 80s and be fine? I've started my long journey looking for my BJ42 1981-1984. I think Australia is probably my best bet for a clean truck. I tried to look up outback imports and it looks like they are out of business any ideas?


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Joined
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I never updated this thread but my CA registration got rejected and I was never able to be registered in CA.

You have to title it in another state first.
 

sponger16

Nathan S.
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Paso Robles California
That sucks are you planning on going that rout. Can you even do that with a. California license and how long do you have to wait?


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Joined
May 6, 2007
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Salida, CO/Pollock Pines, CA
I registered my '87 BJ70 from Calgary straight to CA. No bumps. I got a 90 day sticker when I gave all paper work to DMV. After about a month I received both the Title and plates. I did this in March of 2012. Don't take NO for an answer from some pin head with a personal agenda. Find someone at a different DMV that knows what they are doing. Mention that there are owners up and down the State that had no issues getting a CA title.
 

CycloSteve

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Stuck between a rock and a hard place
When dealing with non-Kaliforniastan-spec vehicles, plan on becoming friendly with your local DMV. Yes, you can definitely register 25+ year old rigs with RHD, diesel, whatever. Just be patient, have lots of documents (or be prepared to get them), and keep pressing them. If your rig does not fit neatly into their little list of check-boxes, you need to do some work.


It took me eight months just to get all of the paperwork straightened out for a 1965 rig "imported" from Oregon, while it was only a few months for my neighbor to get his 1983 HJ45 from OZ titled/registered/plated.
 
Joined
Apr 20, 2007
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Boise, ID
It can be done. You must understand what they are looking for, and figure out how to show it to them. They want proof of a standard that cannot be easily met. Different DMV offices and personnel have different interpretations of the "rules", which also complicates things. Highly recommend titling out of state first - that seems to help. A funny part of the experience was trying to convince a state employee that "Federal Standards" were indeed the same as "US Federal Standards". I kid you not. This is the type of person you'll be dealing with. I have heard through the grapevine that it has become more difficult to do in recent years. Good luck.
 

RufusTheDufus

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I had a relative that owned a string of wrecking yards in southern CA from the 70s thru the late 90s. He hired a professional DMV agent to handle all of his paperwork. Basically the person gets Power of Attorney to perform a certain task for you at the DMV. His person handled registrations, salvage titles, lien sales, non-ops and pretty much everything you might want to have done. I used the agent to have a VIN assigned to a few custom dune buggies I built when I lived out there. The fees were extremely reasonable. Something like $35 to $50 per vehicle.

t\he best thing about hiring an agent is that they build a rapport with their assigned person at the DMV. Over time the learn exactly what can and can't be accomplished and the path of least resistance to reach your goal. If you have a strange request then they can pick up the phone and ask a question. I have no idea if these agents still exist as a profession.
 
Joined
Jul 12, 2014
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San Francisco Bay Area
I recently imported a 1981 BJ42 from Australia, thought I did my homework and I was waiting for my California title/plates from Sacramento when yesterday I received a letter from the California DMV technical compliance division asking for the infamous Toyota letter. After my discussions with the local DMV here in Santa Rosa I understood that I could use the 25-year DOT and 21-year EPA exemptions, but it seems not.

Has anyone brought a diesel Cruiser into California recently and dealt with this? I have a feeling dealing with the California ARB is going to be a very expensive process, so any ideas/tips on this front would be appreciated. Maybe I'll just call the number provided on the letter and plead my case when the DMV opens on Monday... Most of the successful CA registrations - including the one here from Australia - were quite a few years ago, anyone had any luck recently?
 
Joined
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San Francisco Bay Area
After four months and countless hours on the phone with Toyota, the DMV, CARB and the DMV director's office I eventually did get the rig registered. But I would never do it again. In October, 2013 the CARB changed the way they deal with vehicles coming into California from out of state, whether it's already titled in the US or an import from out of the country. If it's a diesel vehicle it's almost impossible to get them registered now, as the CARB does not provide a way in which to have diesel imports tested. The change in rules by the CARB is not something that's been broadly disseminated within the California DMV, so you may even go to a local DMV office and be told that you can register your vehicle, only to have the application denied by Sacramento when you finally go through the process (what happened to me).
 
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southern california
pinklemon, would you be so kind as to share your registration story? i'm trying to purchase a hj60 that is currently registered in AZ, but i'm not sure if transferring the title to CA will be an issue!
 

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