I imported several out of state cars of varying age into CA and here is what I always had to do:
- Smog the car (unless it is pre-1975), no matter the mileage and age
- Bring the previous title OR a BOS plus the last registration statement
- Pay the use tax (which is equivalent to the sales tax in your county)
- Bring the actual car to DMV to confirm VIN and emissions compliance
Hope this helps. I fully expect to be doing this exact thing next week when my Elise gets here to San Jose.
BTW, you can schedule appointments online at DMV and avoid all the standing in line (or most of it, anyway - in San Jose even the appointment line can be a while).