Question about ktm bike registration in California

Discussion in 'West – California, the desert southwest and whatev' started by Eagerpooch, Jul 21, 2020.

  1. Eagerpooch

    Eagerpooch Been here awhile

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    hey guys. I recently moved to CA from NY and brought my 2016 250 xcf which has a street title. I have never registered it though as i always pretty much rode offroad in NY/NJ area.

    question is this. Cali seems to be a hard ass on plating certain models. Am I in the clear if I have a street title from another state or will it come back to bite me. If i go and register this bike at the dmv am i going to lose my street title (NJ)? this would cause me to lose value and I dont want to do that. The title is signed over to me but never registered.

    help is appreciated. sorry if this is a dumb question. I didnt see any info on it.
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  2. FJKai

    FJKai Off Road Lurker

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    Yes, California is very strict/ tough on dirt bikes being plated/ street legal. The best rule of thumb is if it was originally from the dealer as street legal, then you are pretty good. However, it always seems to be dicey when bringing a plated dirt bike in from another state because so many other states are much more lenient. Far too many times DMV has seen bikes come in that we're "plated" in another state and brought back as a means to get around the system. They are pretty much on to that type of stuff so even if you get it by them in the beginning, there's always a chance they'll eventually catch it down the road due to the vin #.

    I've pretty much resigned myself to being legit legal these days, just don't want to deal with the stress of worrying if the DMV office or some random ranger on the trail will catch it. There's also the insurance aspect of it that a lot of guys don't think about. Sure you can get an insurance policy, but get into an accident type situation where fault is determined (you or the other party) and they'll look deep into things to minimize their risk/ payout responsibility because that's what they do, they are in it to make money, not give money. If they find something that they can deny a claim on, you can bet they will and you're on the hook for it (another reason I don't mess around with trying to plate a bike).

    Anyway, there are far more qualified guys on here that can give you advice, like actual former DMV employees so I'm sure they'll chime in and add to it and/ or correct me. :lol3
    This is just my personal take/ opinion based upon living here and riding dirt bikes and etc. my whole life.

    (However, seeing as you are asking about a newer KTM xcf, those aren't street legal here, the exc-f models, yes, the xcf models......not so much. Good luck)
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  3. CRW

    CRW I dont want a pickle

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    If your bike is 50 state legal should be fine. But most important is the emissions sticker! If its not there no go on the plate! I have got around this in the past with a CHP inspection, but that was yes ago. Any way you can keep it registered in NY?
    GOOD LUCK!
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  4. Eagerpooch

    Eagerpooch Been here awhile

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    Much appreciated for the reply. I guess my safest bet is to just not register or transfer title till im out of this state. I would have done it before i left ny but the dmv is shut down bec of some respiratory virus thing.
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  5. Eagerpooch

    Eagerpooch Been here awhile

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    xcfs are built as offroad bikes originally. not sure about what an emmision sticker is but im guessin i dont have or qualify for one. I should have sold it in NY but I couldnt bec i didnt have the title in my name. Id gladly trade it for a husky 350 or 500.
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  6. Shodan2

    Shodan2 Adventurer

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    Had a PITA getting a 2015 KTM 1190 registered - and it's much more of a road-legal bike than a 2016 250 xcf - which tbh looks like a dirt bike with a headlight.
    I'm leaning towards suggesting to stay away from the DMV with it. Esp. these days. CA has plenty of vehicles with out-of-state tags. Likely much of that is 'cause people don't want to pay 10% or more of the vehicle's price to the DMV for... getting an opportunity to keep paying registration renewal fees.
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  7. Eagerpooch

    Eagerpooch Been here awhile

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    I was shocked to hear sales tax is 10.5% here! And xcfs dont have a headlight. Although i just put one on. So do a title transfer on a dirtbike in cali. Does it say not for road use on it?

    also yeah i heard any out of state bike purchase has to go through an inspection. Even a sport bike. If it isnt in its original state like pipes and such they cud deny it. Must be why bikes are so expensive here. U dont have any other market u can buy from. Like arizona or nevada. And if u buy new there are some crazy dealer fees. Like 10% of bikes value in added dealer fees. I priced out a ducati multi pikes peak and it was like 35k out the door.


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  8. Shodan2

    Shodan2 Adventurer

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    @Eagerpooch Mine was out-of-state (from Oregon), although the previous and 1-st owner lived in NorCal (by far not the only one doing so, and not just with a motorcycle - heard of people doing that with cars and trucks too).

    Well, that guy's parents lived in Oregon, so they dealt with the mail there. I didn't have access to any mailbox there, so I sorta had to register it in CA (or in MA where my dad lives, but that would be a much bigger stretch).
    DMV person was searching for:
    > VIN
    > VIN in a 2-nd place: The first one was easy to find, 2-nd one not so much but they wouldn't budge.
    > Emissions sticker which spells out that it's all 50-state legal
    > Some sort of safety certificate sticker
    > Engine number. No, not the 4 or 5-digit number I found imprinted on the engine case. A different engine number which turned out hidden under the skid plate.

    ...Well, I think that was it. Basically took almost an entire day to register the damn thing. And a ~$200 fine on top of the ~$1'100 registration fee - for being a few days late to do so!:hung The latter I've negotiated down to about $100 after calling for the DMV office manager and telling him that I came on the 1-st day their system showed as open for a scheduled visit. He mumbled that I could've came earlier on a walk-in basis. Yeah right, if a scheduled registration took all day...
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  9. Eagerpooch

    Eagerpooch Been here awhile

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    they dont make it easy. i still have to register my car here if the dmv wud open up. but i think i get a pass on that inspection bec i had it registered in another state. not like i bot it from that state. i passed my vehicle emissions smog test amazingly. its a diesel x5
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  10. Shodan2

    Shodan2 Adventurer

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    @Eagerpooch Registering an out-of-state car in CA was significantly easier, as I recall.
    Smog test being the only thing that can cause issues for some - but my car passed it w/o issues, too.
    Still gotta pay the 10.5% tho.

    How do you like the X5 ? I've a '08 335i and I sort of got used to the BMW quirks. Looking to swap for an SUV which can haul more stuff and do mild dirt/backcountry roads. Nothing serious, no need for a Wrangler, but something more than 4" off the ground. 2010-2015-ish model years, not looking to spend more than about $15-18k on the SUV.
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  11. Eagerpooch

    Eagerpooch Been here awhile

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    so to sum it up if anyone is looking this up to get research
    if its originally an offroad bike (even if it was plated) and u buy out of state- no fkn way u get a cali plate
    if its originally an offroad bike u previously owned in a state and was plated- still no fukn way. u get a red sticker which allows u to ride certain times of yr.
    if its original street bike and u buy out of state- u can get it done with one day of inspections headaches and 10.5% tax
    if its original street bike and u had it registered out of state- i think should be fine. u sign a waiver that u had it registered in another state

    street bikes wud be husky fe, ktm excfs and dirtbikes are husky fx, ktm xcf, sx and even effects non dirtbikes like 1190, 1290s and gixers.
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  12. Eagerpooch

    Eagerpooch Been here awhile

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    the X5 is great outside of all the diesel filtration system stuff which can be problematic esp if u dont drive long distances to have it burn off all the stuff that it has been filtering out. Id totally buy another one. mine is a 2010 with 105k mi. it still looks good. I think u can find one in decent shape for 15-18k. I think mine is only worth about 8-9k at this point. I may be selling it one I decide to leave Cali. They also look good with an add a bike on the back.
    I also like that it has storage under the rear can hold all my camping gear and that the rear gate flips down like a truck so u can tailgate.



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  13. FJKai

    FJKai Off Road Lurker

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    The main sticker that they are really looking for here is the C.A.R.B. sticker (California Air Resources Board). All new bikes sold here have them, even chainsaws and etc are starting to have them.

    Pretty much any bike coming in from another state will be required to go through a DMV inspection. I moved to Oregon for a few years and came back with a couple of the same bikes and even though they were originally from California, they all had to be inspected in order to be re-registered, even the off road only ones had to to get a green sticker. PITA! But at least it was pre-covid so it could be done.

    Best rule of thumb, if it came from the dealer plated, then you are good to go (after an inspection of course if coming from out of state). But honestly, I'm sure there's certain situations/ bikes that still may be suspect in California (e.g. bikes without the CARB sticker, might not completely be out of the question for it, but could make it more of a hassle if it doesn't have it vs having it, don't know, just guessing here but honestly I wouldn't put it past California DMV).

    Be careful with the out of state plate situation if you do go that route. Yes plenty of guys do it, but again, it's nothing new to LEO's here. They have all seen and heard every excuse in the book because it's been very strict here for some time regarding plating non-factory plated bikes so dudes have been doing creative things for many years now. They've heard it all and seen it all. If you don't have a matching out of state DL you could be in for a hassle if they are having a bad day and in no rush to move along. Not saying it can't be done nor is it legit in certain situation, but it definitely has the possibility to raise questions and upset some LEO's that feel you are trying to pull a fast one over them. Seen it personally.
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  14. el Pete

    el Pete toda su base

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    • If it was a non-CA compliant offroad motorcycle you cannot get a plate, but it may be registered as a green sticker or red sticker OHV depending on the make & model. If it’s a green sticker bike, there are no restrictions on what time of year you can ride.
    • If you are a California resident and purchasing a used bike out of state, make sure you understand the requirements to get it registered, like the 7500 mile rule.
    • The inspection process is easy and should not take more than about 15 minutes. They’ll make sure the VIN and engine numbers match and that you have the CARB sticker if applicable. I registered an out of state bike last week at AAA, and was in and out with my new plates in less than an hour. And that was a Russian bike without a CARB sticker.
    • The DMV has a technical assistance line and they are quite knowledgeable and helpful. If you are unsure, call.
    • If you decide not to register it in California and you go riding, don’t get caught.
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  15. renogeorge

    renogeorge Let's ride!!

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    As I understand it, the VIN number, not the out of state title, tells DMV the bike was originally an off road only model. The only way I have heard of getting an off road bike plated is with 7500 miles and an out of state plate on it. As several said--good luck!
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  16. Eagerpooch

    Eagerpooch Been here awhile

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    ok lets say i do not qualify for a registration/plate. what do they give you showing proof of ownership? anyone have an example of an offroad bike title in CA? my understanding of the red and green sticker is green is year round and red is restricted in the summer months.
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  17. el Pete

    el Pete toda su base

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    You are correct on the differences between the red and green stickers. Here's the list of dates broken down by riding area: California Air Resources Board (CARB) Non-compliant OHV (Red Sticker) Riding Season Schedule

    And here is the CARB page where you can find out if your bike is compliant. There used to be an easy to read table, but I cannot find it: On-Road New Vehicle & Engine Certification Program
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  18. motokeith

    motokeith Been here awhile

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    In CA all motorcycles are titled, that is your proof of ownership. The street/dirt aspect in regards to getting a license plate or an OHV (red/green) sticker is really a registration issue.

    Street eligible motorcycles get registration and a license plate. This license plate allows you to ride anywhere anytime in off-road areas as well as on the street.

    Actual dirt bikes that cannot be registered for street use because of their equipment and/or emissions status will get either a "green" or "red" sticker OHV registration for off road use. The sticker is basically a thick stick-on "license plate" with an identifying number that you affix to the fork leg. Red stickers are issued to the "dirtier" bikes like MX competition bikes and 2-strokes. Green stickers are issued to "cleaner" enduro and trail type bikes. The DMV employees know jack shit about motorcycle brands and specs. They make their determination based on emissions compliance stickers and specially coded VIN numbers.

    A green sticker bike can be ridden year round. It varies by area as to when red sticker bikes can be ridden. If the area is anywhere near civilization then it is likely summer only in that area, but in many remote riding areas red stickers can be ridden year round.

    If you want to ride your KTM in CA it will require registration (OHV registration) and that will require completing the transfer of your NY title to a CA title.

    That's the "proper" way, anyways. I suppose there isn't much to prevent you from purchasing a non-resident OHV permit and riding with that, but that does not solve the ownership issue if you are ever in the position of needing to prove that.
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  19. DrKayak

    DrKayak Retro Rider

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    As stated above, all motorcycles in CA used on public land have to be titled. My dirt bike titles say OFF HIGHWAY as the title type. My plated bikes say MOTORCYCLE.

    There are stories for out-of-state dirt bikes with a street use title being converted to a CA MOTORCYCLE (street legal) . But... you have to take the bike to CHP for a Vin verification and CHP would have to let it slip by.. not likely these days.

    I ride trials with guys that have competition trails bikes with no title. These are legal for use on private property only.
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  20. Eagerpooch

    Eagerpooch Been here awhile

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    thanks, reason i was wondering is if i title it in CA and then move to Florida now that the title says for Off Highway and another state will give me an issue to plate it. What I dont want to do is lose the street use title. CA is the only state i know of that looks up vins and looks for stickers.




    #20
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