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Discussion Starter #1
I live in L.A., and would like to purchase a Prius in 6-9 months. Luckily that's about the size of most waiting lists, but most places around L.A. are charging way over retail price. Calling around, I found a dealer in Portland, OR that can sell me one for MSRP in 8-10 months.

I thought I was all set, but a friend just reminded me that California has very strict emission laws and doesn't let you register a car purchased out of state if it is not "California Certified".

Does anyone know if by any chance a Prius I buy out-of-state will be California Certified? Or if there's an exemption for hybrids (since a bill was recently passed that exempts hybrids from requiring a smog check every two years)? Or if not what it would cost to have it certified?

Is this a bad idea? Should I call more dealerships in California? Or will I be able to make this work without too much trouble?

Thanks in advance,
Dominic
 

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If a Prius, which probably pollutes less than the average lawnmower or leaf-blower, isn't automatically eligible for use in California, then I'd have to say that the legal and regulatory situation there has become even more onerous than I had originally been lead to believe!

And as an add-on to dmazzoni's question, I'd have to wonder what would happen if I wanted to move my hypothetical factory and all of its jobs to California? Would I have trouble registering my Prius there, just because I bought it in Florida? Am I the only one feeling odd for even having to ask this question?
 

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dmazzoni,
IIRC, not all Prii are California-ready. Below is a link to info about bringing a car to California. It looks to me as though the state discourages the action you are considering, unless the vehicle has more than 7500 miles on it. I can think of many reasons for this: to enforce their air pollution laws; to support local businesses; to protect tax revenues. Apart from the stricter air pollution standards, provisions such as these are not unique to California.

http://www.smogcheck.ca.gov/StdPage.asp ... fornia.htm

Of course, I'm sure certain exceptions are made for wealthy business owners. After all, no one wants onerous state's rights, or the democratically determined will of the people to stand in the way of the free and unfettered movement of capital.

Drive happy,
Moo :)
 

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In California, we don't have to get hybrids smog checked anymore. It was an article a few weeks ago. Anyone Remember?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Hmmmm

I wonder, though, does the fact that we don't need to get the Prius smog-checked mean that the law regarding registering a vehicle that isn't "California Certified" doesn't apply?

Under the circumstances, considering how many benefits the state is offering to hybrid drivers, and considering that demand clearly outstripps supply, you would think that they would actually be in favor of people buying hybrids out of state!
 

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Re: Hmmmm

dmazzoni said:
I wonder, though, does the fact that we don't need to get the Prius smog-checked mean that the law regarding registering a vehicle that isn't "California Certified" doesn't apply?
I don't know. You should probably check with a state agency. Here's some wording from Toyota's Web site:

Every 2004 Prius sold in the U.S. is mechanically equipped to meet the California SULEV [1] emission standard. However, since gasoline available outside of California is not as clean burning, Prius is certified to the Tier 2-Bin 3 standard for federal emissions compliance.

California has adopted a new designation for vehicles with SULEV [1] exhaust emissions, zero fuel evaporative emissions, 150,000-mile emissions durability and an extended emission systems warranty. Vehicles certified to meet these requirements are referred to as Advanced Technology Partial Zero Emission Vehicles (AT-PZEVs). [2] Every 2004 Prius sold in the U.S. is mechanically equipped to meet the California AT-PZEV [2] emission standard. However, they are only designated as AT-PZEVs [2] in California and states having adopted the California regulations.


If it were me, I'd still get clarification from California before plunking down my money in Oregon.

Drive happy,
Moo :)

P.S. You aren't the D. Mazzoni who hosts Wo' Pop, are you?
 

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There must be someone who can definitively answer this question? I agree...it seems as though it would be common sense that the Prius would be green enough to pass, however, I'm still wondering how much expense the "bureacracy" of CA DMV rules would cost us to prove it should we bring one into the state? What are the actual things one must do when registering their Prius bought abroad into CA?

Anyone know the "real" story here?

Cheers,

RobbW
 

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Out of state Prius brought to California

Heres the drill:

New cars bought in California are exempt from smog checks for 3 years but pay registration fees that a license fee, registration fee and title fee. You also pay a dealer a state sales tax that varies from county to county.

New cars brought into California purchased elsewhere pay all the above fees including the "sales tax" but directly to the DMV, not a dealer. In addition, all cars brought into the state were subject to a "smog check". Since the Prius could not be checked on the state smog check equipment, it had to be done by a DMV referee, available by appointment at only a few locations. This requirement MAY now be waived as hybrids are now exempt from smog check requirements as of last week.

By the way, you shouldn't have to go all the way to Oregon to get a Prius at MSRP relatively soon without add ons. Tom Bertini the sales manager at Toyota of Stockton tells me that his waiting list is 1 1/2 to 3 months depending on how flexible you are in color and packages. He gets pkgs 6,7,and 9 (mostly 9) and sells them at MSRP with no add ons. Call him on his cell phone at 209-481-4098. Good hunting.


Sev
 

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Toyota Fresno

LOL - Just called Toyota Fresno and they said if you're not on the waiting list, it would be about 9 months! :roll:

Oh well,

RobbW
 

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Most Toyota's, wether Prius or not come with the 50 state emissions free of charge. You will be safe purchasing in Oregon, my home state, and registering it in CA. Let the dealer know you are from CA and they will be able to take care of the taxes as well. They will give you the paperwork to show in CA that you have already paid the sales tax.
 
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