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Discussion Starter #1
it's a 2005 track Elise...I've never registered an out of state car. I'm assuming the DMV will do a safety inspection? Anyone know exactly what will be checked? Any advice guys? Car is fitted with many aftermarket parts and a FF275 kit, AC/Heater removed. should pass the sniffer test, but I'm afraid it will fail the visual and maybe safety check (car is actually better equipped than stock for safety, but not per Ca regulations I'm sure).

Again, I'm assuming heater must go back in for the front defrost requirement?!?

Can I just borrow a stock elise and swap in my VIN # from a generous forum member and move on with life? :shrug:
 

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CA doesn't care about vehicle safety much, you'll just need a smog check. Some people have passed with the FF275 kit, but technically it's illegal so you're taking a chance there. Not sure how it is these days, but used to be no real penalty for failing a test, you just have to go 'fix' it and test again. Doesn't matter what you've done to the AC/heater.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
So there is no physical vehicle inspection?!? That would be awesome, can someone confirm?
 

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I registered an AZ 2005 Elise two weeks ago.

I needed a smog test (done with the sniffer up the tailpipe) and the DMV verification.

The smog was no problem, especially as the tech had never seen a Lotus before so didn't know what to look for anyway. The DMV verification involved checking the VIN # and the fact that there was the CA compliant emissions sticker on the engine cover

Thats all (plus money of course!)
 

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Yes, there are physical inspections, but as long as the labeling provided by Lotus is still in place it should be ok. However, you say it's a "track car"...how extensively modified is it? Does it still have the parts to make it legal to drive on the street (or was it ever legal...ie its not a Cup car is it?)
You must get it smogged before you register it...which I believe depends on where you live. Does your county require smog? You can go through the registration process (paying the reg fee and sales tax) and they will do it all pending a smog. That way you can see if it is even registrable.
For smog...with a FF275 kit you are rolling the dice big time...good luck.
 

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Yes, there are physical inspections, but as long as the labeling provided by Lotus is still in place it should be ok. However, you say it's a "track car"...how extensively modified is it? Does it still have the parts to make it legal to drive on the street (or was it ever legal...ie its not a Cup car is it?)
You must get it smogged before you register it...which I believe depends on where you live. Does your county require smog? You can go through the registration process (paying the reg fee and sales tax) and they will do it all pending a smog. That way you can see if it is even registrable.
For smog...with a FF275 kit you are rolling the dice big time...good luck.
I would recommend taking it to ForcedFed in Livermore for the smog. They can make it "smoggable" by changing injectors, et cetera. Otherwise, you may be SOL, especially if you have the FF275 version with the standalone EFI ECU which will make the stock ECU throw codes like confetti (perma-CEL) which is an instant smog fail.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
guys, I'm not worried about the actual sniffer test...I was worried in case the car needed to go to the DMV for some sort of official inspection. From what you all are saying, I don't really need to worry about it so long as I can get the certificate electronically submitted to the DMV...if this is truly the case, whew!

The car is actually another forum members baby...the CF-T of DPM. To say the least, I'm looking forward to the Sunday drives!
 

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guys, I'm not worried about the actual sniffer test...I was worried in case the car needed to go to the DMV for some sort of official inspection. From what you all are saying, I don't really need to worry about it so long as I can get the certificate electronically submitted to the DMV...if this is truly the case, whew!

The car is actually another forum members baby...the CF-T of DPM. To say the least, I'm looking forward to the Sunday drives!
CA DMV will likely want to verify the VIN. You'll need to take the car to a DMV office or CHP office and have the VIN checked. Obviously if you take it to a CHP office you'll have an officer looking at the car and may open yourself up to more potential questions about legality.

Cheers,
Kiyoshi
 

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guys, I'm not worried about the actual sniffer test..
Well, you should be! It's not just a sniffer test, it's a visual inspection of all smog-related equipment as well. For example, I once tried smogging an MR2 with an K&N cone style air filter, thinking they might not notice. Wrong. Car failed the smog check. You might find a smog tech who is willing to overlook certain things, or just plain doesn't notice them, but the open hood check will be a big risk. The one benefit our cars have are the underbody panels, hiding most all exhaust system modifications from view (turbo, cat delete, etc).
 

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Discussion Starter #10
MattG,

I am not worried about the sniffer test...I'm sure you get my drift. I'm only concerned about DMV and CHP employees.

I was under the impression a car coming from another state (even if 50 state legal) will need to go through some sort of official inspection for verifying the basics of road worthiness:

blinkers
horn
rear defrost/front defrost
no check engine light
Airbags
basic emissions

The Check Engine Light is on (and normal per the FF275 kit, is Casey on this forum to confirm?). Air bags not installed and heater/ac is gone.

I worry about a state referee inspection like this as it would expose the car to some of these issues.

Again, this is not to say it is a polluter or an unsafe car. Many have PASSED the sniffer test with the same kit (the cat is installed) and being a track car should tell you its safe.
 

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MattG,

I am not worried about the sniffer test...I'm sure you get my drift. I'm only concerned about DMV and CHP employees.

I was under the impression a car coming from another state (even if 50 state legal) will need to go through some sort of official inspection for verifying the basics of road worthiness:

blinkers
horn
rear defrost/front defrost
no check engine light
Airbags
basic emissions

The Check Engine Light is on (and normal per the FF275 kit, is Casey on this forum to confirm?). Air bags not installed and heater/ac is gone.

I worry about a state referee inspection like this as it would expose the car to some of these issues.

Again, this is not to say it is a polluter or an unsafe car. Many have PASSED the sniffer test with the same kit (the cat is installed) and being a track car should tell you its safe.
If you can pass CA smog (which is sniffer, visual of smog-related equipment like gas cap and so on, and OBD-II (i.e. CEL)), then you should be OK, as long as the car has the VIN tag. The DMV often does want to see the VIN on the actual car before they allow to register out of state cars.

Good luck!
 

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If you have a check engine light you will fail smog I CA.
 

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Again, this is not to say it is a polluter or an unsafe car. Many have PASSED the sniffer test with the same kit (the cat is installed) and being a track car should tell you its safe.
Agreed...CA smog laws are quite strict, unreasonably so! I've never quite understood the rational behind the visual check. Sniffer, sure, great idea, but why the visual?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Anyone else have the FF275 kit installed? Anywhere around (or a real fix) to the check engine light?
 

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Anyone else have the FF275 kit installed? Anywhere around (or a real fix) to the check engine light?
I have a FF275 and there is no workaround for the CEL that would pass CA smog other than going back to stock injectors, disabling the turbo, re-plugging in the stock ECU by itself, and driving the car for a while until the ready signals are back on OBD-II. Either that, or know someone that can do a smog without actually smogging the car in question (I do not know anyone like that!). Again - good luck!! I will have my car smogged by Forcedfed when the time comes (next year).
 

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$$$... Pure and simple. It's gotta be. $$$ when making equipment CARB compliant. And $$$ in the visual. :mad::mad:

Agreed...CA smog laws are quite strict, unreasonably so! I've never quite understood the rational behind the visual check. Sniffer, sure, great idea, but why the visual?
 

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Can I just borrow a stock elise and swap in my VIN # from a generous forum member and move on with life? :shrug:

Did you really think someone would do this?? :shrug:
 

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Discussion Starter #18
It was a joke, but with some truth in it. A few of us did it back in the good old RX-7 days... Those things can be difficult to smog! Although, spirited drives and getting the exhaust up past 1600 degrees really did help! ...I do miss the 5 foot flames ;)


Did you really think someone would do this?? :shrug:
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Looks like the elise was originally sold by Symbolic in La Jolla, Ca, so no out of state issues to worry about. Just a smog test and I should be all set! :D
 
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