Vehicle modifications and registration class
Modifications to a car, pick-up truck, van, motorcycle, or moped can affect its registration class.
Important: The DMV cannot examine your vehicle to determine the correct registration class. You must determine the correct registration class for your vehicle.
Modifications to a motorcycle or moped, including Limited Use Motorcycles
You cannot make modifications to a motorcycle or moped, including a limited use motorcycle, to alter its maximum performance speed. A limited used motorcycle cannot be modified to change the registration to a different class of limited use motorcycle or to the motorcycle registration class; similarly, a motorcycle cannot be modified to change the registration class from motorcycle to a limited use motorcycle class.
Modifications to cars, pick-up trucks, and vans
Part 106 of DMV Regulations describes the vehicles that are registered in the 'Commercial' class and in the passenger class. Part 106 also describes how some modifications that you make to your vehicle can affect the correct registration class of your vehicle. A description of the modifications appears below. Each description includes a reference to the DMV Regulations.
For all vehicle modifications, you must obtain a vehicle weight slip. You can get vehicle weight slips at most vehicle and/or metal scrapyards and from some auto-parts stores and mechanics, especially those specializing in vehicle modifications and camper body/equipment sales and installation.
Modifications that change a registration from 'Passenger' class to 'Commercial' class
Cars (Part 106.2 (e))
You can register a car in the 'Commercial' class if all the seats behind the driver are removed. Instead of the seats, you must install a permanent box or permanent rack to carry cargo.
Station Wagons and Vans (Part 106.2 (f))
You can register a station wagon in the 'Commercial' class if all the seats and all the seat fittings behind the driver are removed completely.
Modifications that change a registration from 'Commercial' class to 'Passenger' class
Pick-up Trucks (Part 106.6 (b) and (c))
You can register a pick-up in the 'Passenger' class if it meets certain conditions, depending on its unladen weight.
If your modified or unmodified pick-up truck has an unladen weight less than 6,001 lbs., you can register it in the 'Passenger' class if it meets the following conditions:
- the pick-up truck does not have any business advertisements
- the pick-up truck is used exclusively for non-commercial purposes
If your modified pick-up truck with an unladen weight greater than 6,000 lbs., you can register it in the 'Passenger' class if it meets the following conditions:
- the pick-up truck does not have any business advertisements and is used exclusively for non-commercial purposes
- a camper top having one or more side windows completely encloses the truck bed
- the pick-up truck has seats, seat fittings, or camping equipment installed in the truck bed
- 'camping equipment” indicates that you have a permanent bed, a permanent stove, or a permanent refrigerator in the vehicle.
- if this equipment is removed and you use the van, you must register the van as a commercial vehicle
Vans (Part 106.3 (d))
You can register it in the 'Passenger' class if the van has
- at least one side window behind the driver, and
- at least one seat or set of seat fittings that is installed behind the driver, or
- camping equipment that is installed behind the driver.
- 'camping equipment' indicates that you have a permanent bed, a permanent stove, or a permanent refrigerator in the vehicle
- if you install seats behind the driver, you must also install seatbelts that meet NY State Occupant Restraint Law requirements
NOTE: These modifications must be permanent. If you use a van or pick-up truck without the required modifications, then you must register it in the 'Commercial' registration class.