Specially Constructed or Modified Vehicle Registration

A specially constructed or modified vehicle (SPCNS) is a homemade or kit vehicle built for private use, not made by a licensed manufacturer and not eligible for resale. These vehicles may be built from a kit and may include a combination of new and used parts, especially if they are constructed using a junked vehicle that was previously dismantled. 

Registering a Specially Constructed Vehicle

To register a specially constructed vehicle (including a kit commercial vehicle), you will need:

A SPCNS vehicle does not refer to a vehicle that has been repaired or restored using replacement parts, or to a vehicle modified from its original design.

Example: A Volkswagen “Beetle” with modified fenders, engine compartment lid, and front end is not considered a specially constructed vehicle because it is still recognizable as a Volkswagen “Beetle”.

Altered Vehicles

If you change or alter your vehicle’s body and spend more than $2,000 or more on the alterations, or if your alterations place the vehicle in a different weight classification, you must report these alterations to DMV.

To report alterations, you will need:

  • The vehicle’s California Certificate of Title.
  • A vehicle verification by an authorized DMV employee completed after the alteration is completed.
  • A completed Statement of Facts, Vehicle Body Change Statement (REG 256) form.
  • A weight certificate from a California Certified Public Weighmaster.
  • Evidence of purchase of (or ownership of) the added parts.
    • This can include bills of sale, invoices, or sales slips.
    • If you placed a body on the vehicle which you removed from another vehicle that you own, please provide the license plate number or vehicle identification number for the other vehicle.
  • Additional fees that may be due if the vehicle falls into a higher weight classification.

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