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Just got shocked by the CA DMV renewal

Just got my DMV renewal for my MS. Anyone else get a DMV registration renewal of >$700? Is this CA getting back for the carpool sticker?

Wow, is it based on sticker price? Where would one go to look up the projected price? seems to have calculators on it.

The calculator only really lets you determine the renewal cost after you have already registered. So you can't speculate on the yearly renewal cost until you already bought the car. It's stupid.

CA. has many DMV fees , vehicle use fee,registration fee, county fee,city fee, ocean fee,etc etc

Wow, I just paid $125 to register my Model S in Arizona for five years.

Aren't you glad you do not live in California. They tend to lead the country on most everything but I do hope we do not follow them on size and efficiency of government. I just do not see the value.

I wish mine was $700! Come to Colorado where the first year is around $1200- $1500!

@Amped... Really? Mine was $157.. then I went online and requested my vanity plate for another $125 (for 5 years as well)

@daveyb23: Do you mind me asking what your approximate purchase price came to? I'm kind of interested what my renewals will be for my ~$100k P85.

It has been for MANY years in California that the annual billing/registration is based on vehicle cost/value. It does go DOWN each year, so that is something to look forward to.

Yes, it is expensive to live in California, but we did get $2500 cash back rebate for the car, and as many "critics" of this level of vehicular indulgence have noted..."Does anyone who can afford a $100,000 car need to have the rank and file citizen help pay for it?"

So, please "suck it up" about the annual fees from the DMV. We can always move to Oregon or Arizona, if the tax structure here is too much. Heck we have been looking at Portland off and on for the last 3 years as a relocation option now both of us are retired, BUT that got vetoed as it is just TOO WET too much of the time there for our personal lifestyle. We also looked closely at moving to Denver, but other issues led to rejecting that option. We will STAY in California for ALL the climate, culture, diversity, and personal connections we have here...and (grudgingly) pay the extra tax and cost of living tariffs.

@ unclegeek - Yes, it was somewhere around there. I figured $125 was close enough to $157, I just didn't remember the exact dollar amount. When I paid, it was lumped in with my sales tax of 5.6%. Without the EV discount, registration would have been over $1,700 for the first year based on their normal rates for ICE vehicles.

Also, all alternative fuel plates in Arizona can use the HOV lane without restrictions. If you see a MC Red Tesla with a blue cloud plate that says "BYEGAS", that's me! :)

@Amped.... Is there a discount on AZ auto registration for ZEV? I just paid over $450 for one year for my wife's Infinity G37 in Scottsdale.

@ dlake - As far as I know, it's not the emission classification that qualifies for the discount but rather the fuel type. Here is a FAQ page about the blue cloud plate that earns the lower registration fees and HOV access, it should answer your question:

An Infinity G37 doesn't appear to qualify under the alternative fuel guidelines.

Mine would have been ~$900 under the old ad-valorem tax system in GA, but I was able to opt into the new title/ad-valorem tax which is a one-time fee (was actually only $700 extra), and then my tag will be $50/yr ($25 of that for the alternate fuel tag).


I went to DMV link, the estimate was the same for gas or electric car. This is just the cost of living in California...or just one more cost...

So the calculators aren't useful for renewal fees unless your car is already registered, but they do give the details with the algorithm you need here:

Came up with $679 for Santa Clara for first year renewal, registration varies within about a $10 range by county. Looks like all vehicle are required to pay a smog abatement fee, EV or no. Each year they factor in more depreciation, though not on a realistic scale. It's just linear.

Not a huge factor, but I'm glad I know now rather than getting a surprise at renewal time like daveyb23.

@Amped... thanks.
This is what I found on the AZ DMV:
Registration and Fees

The vehicle license tax (VLT) for an AFV is changed to a rate of $4 per $100 of assessed valuation, which is determined by the following:

For the first year, the assessed value is 1-percent of the factory list price (FLP) of the AFV.
For subsequent years, the assessed value is depreciated 15-percent each year.
The minimum VLT for an AFV registration is $5.
In addition, an AFV is subject to

$8 vehicle registration fee.
$8 one-time special plate or sticker fee.
25¢ Air Quality Compliance Fee (if in an emissions test area) and a $1.50 Air Quality Fee.
So, if one pays $100,000 for a MS, their license tax would be $4K + fees?
According to this, the registration is based on 1% of assessed value-- that would be $1000, correct?
Where is the discount for a $157 registration?

And you're are certainly correct- An Infinity G37 drinks lots of gasoline.

@ dlake - what you are missing is the "$4 per $100 of assessed valuation" part. The assessed valuation will be 1% of the list price, or $1,000. At $4 per $100 based on an assessed value of $1,000, first year registration tax is $40 plus the miscellaneous fees you mention. On subsequent years, the assessed value of $1,000 is depreciated by 15% and re-calculated using $4 per $100 of assessed value for each subsequent year.

Total registration fees for five years came to around $150-$160.

All cars in PA are $38.

But we have low-quality beaches. :)

Not to make you all mad but until Iowa rescinds this (expected soon) my car got registered for $25 and after 5 years it will be $15. I didn't get any tax rebates for Iowa (still got the federal though).

Once it gets rescinded then I will be in the same boat as the rest of you as registration is based upon value (drops by whatever depreciation schedule the state uses) and the weight of vehicle.

I'm with Amped, paid $125 for 5 years. Actually it was $140 because I went to a satellite office and not the actual DMV.

CA has a fixed and a variable part of the annual license fee. The variable part is 0.65% the purchase price for the 1st year. After that, the variable part decreases yearly:
Year 1 - 100% (i.e. 0.65% of purchase price)
Year 2 - 92%
Year 3 - 83%
Year 4 - 75%
Year 5 - 66%
Year 6 - 58%
Year 7 - 49%
Year 8 - 41%
Year 9 - 32%
Year 10 - 24%
Year 11 - 15%

@Amped... Thanks. I got it now. I am about a year away from purchase and just "lining up my ducks." I could buy one now (wife has given me green light), but I need to get some stuff out of the way first. Solar city install, etc.

Check your final purchase document. Is it more or less than you paid initially for the first year. Should be less.

OP - I'm not shocked by the renewal I just got for December, but yeah, CA living comes with a price, no doubt. $741 total ($575 is the CA license fee). Bay Area.
Winces but then Tesla grin pops back up! :-)

+1 NKYTA, yes, not shocked, not happy but expected a large fee which was included in the total bill paid to Tesla when purchasing the car, so you should know approx. how much to expect. It does go down every year.

So I DO own the road!!

@Xerogas - Not quite, it's based in part on resale value and goes down every year.

Note that the portion of the CA registration that is value based (the VLF) is deductible as state taxes on your federal income tax return. The core registration fee (around $40 or so) is not deductible.

Heck we have been looking at Portland off and on for the last 3 years as a relocation option now both of us are retired, BUT that got vetoed as it is just TOO WET too much of the time there for our personal lifestyle.

It's a silly-liberal town, but:

1. No sales tax.
2. Great CCW laws.
3. Powell's City of Books!

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