California Title and Registration of Diesels

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On second look, I'm not sure how being a "registered motorhome" means anything to the DMV today. I'm guessing this was originally registered pre-2017? I reached out to the seller.

Recreational Vehicles & Motorhomes
If you have a motorhome or recreational vehicle (RV) in California, the DMV requires it to be registered like you would register a standard car. For more information, see our California Car Registration page.
 

SteveJackson

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You can get a "letter of conformity" from the manufacturer specifying the emissions standard to which the vehicle was built (pointless for older Toyotas), however no manufacturer supplies such letters (creating a standard which cannot be met);
Which isn't possible.

You can take your vehicle to the only state-certified Diesel emissions testing lab, located in the bay area. There for $10-15k USD they will modify the vehicle to pass the federal standards that likely don't exist. I've spoken to the importers and others who list this option in their sites and profiles, but have never found an example of someone who has gone down this route. ARB's website implies this is not an acceptable option. It is very questionable as to whether this is a viable solution. It may well be a black hole of time & money.
Thus our troubles have begun anew.
CEE, who does the modifications, does this all the time with other types of vehicles. Visit his place and the parking lot is full of skylines and G-wagons. It works and it satisfies the CARB requirement. In speaking with the owner a few times, he claims to have modified diesel land cruisers yet I don't know personally of anyone who's done it.
 
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Which isn't possible.
Exactly. This is worth restating as there is a lot of misinformation out there on this topic. The Letter Does Not Exist. Toyota will not supply one.

The DMV does not know what it is, but they may well google what to do and tell you to go get one. I had the office manager at one CA DMV arguing with me on this. She insisted that all I had to do was visit the nearest Toyota dealer and I would easily get a letter and be back in business.

Don't bother researching this or calling or visiting Toyota dealerships.
 

Onur

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Toyota is 💯 not interested in seeing Gray market Toyota’s in the US. They will do everything to NOT assist.
 
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SOR and others sell those labels. You could always add one yourself. I considered doing so but mine went through in early 2016.

Two friends had Delicas, one friend had a HiAce, and another HDJ81 got their titles revoked after four months, citing they go to a CARB testing facility.

Re: the letter from Toyota, I suppose you could get a friend at a dealership to write one one if you're desperate. How do they know what one looks like if they don't exist?

There's also a CARB testing-approved facility in the Long Beach / LA area as well IIRC. My brother is in the JDM Silva/Skyline scene and his friend is an importer down in Long Beach. When I had an HJ61 and couldn't get it registered, he offered to handle it for me with his next batch of imports. $10k. Pass/fail.

The Texino camper used a VIN/Title service called Pacific Coast something or other. All they did was push the paperwork. It seems even the days of "I know a guy at the DMV" are numbered.
 
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SOR and others sell those labels. You could always add one yourself. I considered doing so but mine went through in early 2016.
Could you give a link or part number? I'm searching for keywords on sor.com and can't find one. It should look something like the sticker from the last page of this PDF: https://www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/wcm/connect/fd26e7fc-3801-421b-a8a3-c7751a0221b3/17vin29.pdf


Re: the letter from Toyota, I suppose you could get a friend at a dealership to write one one if you're desperate. How do they know what one looks like if they don't exist?
I haven't pushed my luck on this but I've thought about it. I may call ARB and see if I can get some insight on this mysterious letter.

There's also a CARB testing-approved facility in the Long Beach / LA area as well IIRC. My brother is in the JDM Silva/Skyline scene and his friend is an importer down in Long Beach. When I had an HJ61 and couldn't get it registered, he offered to handle it for me with his next batch of imports. $10k. Pass/fail.
What did you end up doing with your HJ61? Do you know if anyone has successfully taken a diesel Landcruisers through your friend's importer? When was this? As far as I can tell, the Santa Ana place is the only currently operating lab that can handle the emissions piece.
 
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I sold the HJ61 to a friend in Texas. I don't think anyone has taken a cruiser through him, because he only imports cars. He just offered to try for me.

Here's a link to the emissions decal 350-037-1992CA :

A friend mounted that decal to his HDJ81, took it to CHP and they checked the box, and got it registered last year.
 
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A friend mounted that decal to his HDJ81, took it to CHP and they checked the box, and got it registered last year.
Interesting. It would have to be a fairly inattentive CHP person to not notice the model/year/fuel mismatch. I wish I could find one for a 1990 diesel - that would make me feel a little bit better about attempting this route.

Just curious - did they have it inspected by CHP or DMV? I ask because I believe the trigger that requires the CHP inspection is the missing (or mismatching) decal. Makes me wonder if DMV inspected it, marked the sticker as mismatching, triggering the visit to CHP?
 
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They won't have one for diesel since we didn't get the diesels in the US, remember? ;) My officer didn't even look at the label that closely...

VIN Verification needs to be done before registration. CHP is the most official. You can also take it to a third party but I feel like it's met with less scrutiny if it's CHP.

You can always try it. If it goes pear-shaped, take your paperwork and leave. No harm done.
 
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They won't have one for diesel since we didn't get the diesels in the US, remember? ;) My officer didn't even look at the label that closely...

VIN Verification needs to be done before registration. CHP is the most official. You can also take it to a third party but I feel like it's met with less scrutiny if it's CHP.

You can always try it. If it goes pear-shaped, take your paperwork and leave. No harm done.

Ehhhhhh.... my brother had a motorcycle blacklisted. He can NEVER register it in CA now. IT was an 80s motorcycle, did not have the CA emissions sticker, but it was old enough it shouldn't have needed it. However, it has so few miles, they said it did... he argued with her about that fact it was 30 years old, and she got mad I guess and blacklisted it. He went to another DMV the next day not knowing she had done that, hoping to get a smarter/nicer DMV person, and they told him no problem... and then saw that it had been blacklisted and there was NO way they could do anything now. Super bitchy move, but be careful. If they sense something is funky, they can make things really crappy for you.
 
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Is anyone aware of issues with selling a cruiser already legally titled in CA? I am relocating to NY and considering selling my BJ74 in CA given how difficult it is now to get one there. Would rather it stay in CA and just get another one in NY. But if the risk of it getting caught under the stricter rules now are just as high as a new registration and new title, then it's likely not worth it.
 

hoser

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I sold a Canadian Spec BJ70 recently to another person in CA and it was registered without issue. Not quite in the same category as a JDM 70 but.... :meh:.

I doubt there would be an issue with yours. There is no VIN verification on your transfer of ownership.
 
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Just doing a little googling around for printing out your own hood stickers:hmm:, found this CA DMV site:

Vehicles Purchased From Out of the Country (Grey Market)
...No motorcycle or diesel-powered vehicle can be converted to California emission standards.

But then here when you go to CARB (which it says to go to for more info):

1975 and newer BUT greater than 2 years from the date of production: These vehicles require a "Certificate of Conformance" issued by the ARB after a successful laboratory test. This test is administered to the same standards required of new vehicle manufacturers, and for the model year of the vehicle . However, unlike new vehicle manufacturers, as an individual you are not required to meet the full range of additional testing and equipment standards such as On-Board Diagnostic (OBD) requirements, durability testing, low emission fleet averaging, or Zero Emissions Vehicle testing (LEV and ZEV requirements)......

....Unlike California's basic Smog Check program, the Direct Import program does not have exemptions other than the original 1967 model year and older exclusion outlined above.

Exemptions
Diesel Vehicles

1979 model year and older vehicles with original-equipment diesel engines are exempt from Direct Import lab testing requirements. Please note that any vehicle converted to operate on diesel fuel is subject to lab testing requirements if it is a 1968 model year vehicle or newer.


If you search for "Direct Import Program" it only comes up with that section, and even tells you how to look for a sticker under the hood to identify that the car was not made for USA originally. But very conflicting from CARB and from DMV. They clearly say 2 different things.

Last thing here similar to above:

Not all direct import vehicles over two years old can be converted to California emissions standards and FMVSS. If the vehicle is a 1968 or newer year-model auto or commercial vehicle, or a 1978 or newer year model motorcycle that does not comply with EPA or CARB emission requirements, contact CARB by phone at 1-800-242-4450 or by email at helpline@www.arb.ca.gov.

Motorcycles, off-highway vehicles, and diesel-powered vehicles cannot be converted to California emissions standards at this time. Therefore, they cannot be registered in California unless they were originally manufactured to meet U.S. and California emissions standards.


Might be worth a phone call to ARB and show them their site says they can be modified and a Diesel requires no modification and see where it goes. Seems that if they will give you a sicker, you would be home free (aside from apparently the DMV administration has the final say, meaning its up to someones feelings rather than rules)
 
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