A. On receipt of an application and evidence that the applicant owns or has regular use of another passenger car, autocycle, or motorcycle, the Commissioner shall issue appropriately designed license plates to owners of antique motor vehicles and antique trailers. These license plates shall be valid so long as title to the vehicle is vested in the applicant. The fee for the registration card and license plates of any of these vehicles shall be a one-time fee of $50.

Terms Used In Virginia Code 46.2-730

  • Antique motor vehicle: means every motor vehicle, as defined in this section, which was actually manufactured or designated by the manufacturer as a model manufactured in a calendar year not less than 25 years prior to January 1 of each calendar year and is owned solely as a collector's item. See Virginia Code 46.2-100
  • Antique trailer: means every trailer or semitrailer, as defined in this section, that was actually manufactured or designated by the manufacturer as a model manufactured in a calendar year not less than 25 years prior to January 1 of each calendar year and is owned solely as a collector's item. See Virginia Code 46.2-100
  • Autocycle: means a three-wheeled motor vehicle that has a steering wheel and seating that does not require the operator to straddle or sit astride and is manufactured to comply with federal safety requirements for motorcycles. See Virginia Code 46.2-100
  • Commissioner: means the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles of the Commonwealth. See Virginia Code 46.2-100
  • Conviction: A judgement of guilt against a criminal defendant.
  • Department: means the Department of Motor Vehicles of the Commonwealth. See Virginia Code 46.2-100
  • Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
  • Law-enforcement officer: means any officer authorized to direct or regulate traffic or to make arrests for violations of this title or local ordinances authorized by law. See Virginia Code 46.2-100
  • License plate: means a device containing letters, numerals, or a combination of both, attached to a motor vehicle, trailer, or semitrailer to indicate that the vehicle is properly registered with the Department. See Virginia Code 46.2-100
  • Misdemeanor: Usually a petty offense, a less serious crime than a felony, punishable by less than a year of confinement.
  • Motor vehicle: means every vehicle as defined in this section that is self-propelled or designed for self-propulsion except as otherwise provided in this title. See Virginia Code 46.2-100
  • Motorcycle: means every motor vehicle designed to travel on not more than three wheels in contact with the ground and is capable of traveling at speeds in excess of 35 miles per hour. See Virginia Code 46.2-100
  • Owner: means a person who holds the legal title to a vehicle; however, if a vehicle is the subject of an agreement for its conditional sale or lease with the right of purchase on performance of the conditions stated in the agreement and with an immediate right of possession vested in the conditional vendee or lessee or if a mortgagor of a vehicle is entitled to possession, then the conditional vendee or lessee or mortgagor shall be the owner for the purpose of this title. See Virginia Code 46.2-100
  • Passenger car: means every motor vehicle other than a motorcycle or autocycle designed and used primarily for the transportation of no more than 10 persons, including the driver. See Virginia Code 46.2-100
  • Person: includes any individual, corporation, partnership, association, cooperative, limited liability company, trust, joint venture, government, political subdivision, or any other legal or commercial entity and any successor, representative, agent, agency, or instrumentality thereof. See Virginia Code 1-230
  • Semitrailer: means every vehicle of the trailer type so designed and used in conjunction with a motor vehicle that some part of its own weight and that of its own load rests on or is carried by another vehicle. See Virginia Code 46.2-100
  • State: when applied to a part of the United States, includes any of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, and the United States Virgin Islands. See Virginia Code 1-245
  • Trailer: means every vehicle without motive power designed for carrying property or passengers wholly on its own structure and for being drawn by a motor vehicle, including manufactured homes. See Virginia Code 46.2-100
  • Vehicle: means every device in, on or by which any person or property is or may be transported or drawn on a highway, except personal delivery devices and devices moved by human power or used exclusively on stationary rails or tracks. See Virginia Code 46.2-100

B. On receipt of an application and evidence that the applicant owns or has regular use of another passenger car, autocycle, or motorcycle, the Commissioner may authorize for use on antique motor vehicles and antique trailers Virginia license plates manufactured prior to 1976 and designed for use without decals, if such license plates are embossed with or are of the same year of issue as the model year of the antique motor vehicle or antique trailer on which they are to be displayed. Original metal year tabs issued in place of license plates for years 1943 and 1952 and used with license plates issued in 1942 and 1951, respectively, also may be authorized by the Commissioner for use on antique motor vehicles and antique trailers that are of the same model year as the year the metal tab was originally issued. These license plates and metal tabs shall remain valid so long as title to the vehicle is vested in the applicant. The fee for the registration card and permission to use the license plates and metal tabs on any of these vehicles shall be a one-time fee of $50. If more than one request is made for use, as provided in this section, of license plates having the same number, the Department shall accept only the first such application.

C. Notwithstanding the provisions of §§ 46.2-711 and 46.2-715, antique motor vehicles may display single license plates if the original manufacturer’s design of the antique motor vehicles allows for the use of only single license plates or if the license plate was originally issued in one of the following years and is displayed in accordance with the provisions of subsection B: 1906, 1907, 1908, 1909, 1945, or 1946.

D. Antique motor vehicles and antique trailers registered with license plates issued or authorized for use under this section shall not be used for general transportation purposes, including, but not limited to, daily travel to and from the owner‘s place of employment, but shall only be used:

1. For participation in club activities, exhibits, tours, parades, and similar events;

2. On the highways of the Commonwealth for the purpose of testing their operation or selling the vehicle or trailer, obtaining repairs or maintenance, transportation to and from events as described in subdivision 1, and for occasional pleasure driving not exceeding 250 miles from the residence of the owner; and

3. To carry or transport (i) passengers in the antique motor vehicles, (ii) personal effects in the antique motor vehicles and antique trailers, or (iii) other antique motor vehicles being transported for show purposes.

The registration card issued to an antique motor vehicle or an antique trailer registered pursuant to subsections A, B, and C shall indicate such vehicle or trailer is for limited use.

E. Owners of motor vehicles and trailers applying for registration pursuant to subsections A, B and C shall submit to the Department, in the manner prescribed by the Department, certifications that such vehicles or trailers are capable of being safely operated on the highways of the Commonwealth.

Pursuant to § 46.2-1000, the Department shall suspend the registration of any vehicle or trailer registered with license plates issued under this section that the Department or the Department of State Police determines is not properly equipped or otherwise unsafe to operate. Any law-enforcement officer shall take possession of the license plates, registration card and decals, if any, of any vehicle or trailer registered with license plates issued under this section when he observes any defect in such vehicle or trailer as set forth in § 46.2-1000.

F. Antique motor vehicles and antique trailers displaying license plates issued or authorized for use pursuant to subsections B and C may be used for general transportation purposes if the following conditions are met:

1. The physical condition of the vehicle’s license plate or plates has been inspected and approved by the Department;

2. The license plate or plates are registered to the specific vehicle by the Department;

3. The owner of the vehicle periodically registers the vehicle with the Department and pays a registration fee for the vehicle equal to that which would be charged to obtain regular state license plates for that vehicle;

4. The vehicle passes a periodic safety inspection as provided in Article 21 (§ 46.2-1157 et seq.) of Chapter 10;

5. The vehicle displays current decals attached to the license plate, issued by the Department, indicating the valid registration period for the vehicle; and

6. When applicable, the vehicle meets the requirement of Article 22 (§ 46.2-1176 et seq.) of Chapter 10.

If more than one request is made for use, as provided in this subsection, of license plates having the same number, the Department shall accept only the first such application. Only vehicles titled to the person seeking to use license plates as provided in this subsection shall be eligible to use license plates as provided in this subsection.

G. Nothing in this section shall be construed as prohibiting the use of an antique motor vehicle to tow a trailer or semitrailer.

H. Any owner of an antique motor vehicle or antique trailer registered with license plates pursuant to this section who is convicted of a violation of this section is guilty of a Class 4 misdemeanor. Upon receiving a record of conviction of a violation of this section, the Department shall revoke and not reinstate the owner’s privilege to register the vehicle operated in violation of this section with license plates issued or authorized for use pursuant to this section for a period of five years from the date of conviction.

I. Except for the one-time $50 registration fee prescribed in subsections A and B, the provisions of this section shall apply to all owners of vehicles and trailers registered with license plates issued under this section prior to July 1, 2007. Such owners shall, based on a schedule and a manner prescribed by the Department, (i) provide evidence that they own or have regular use of another passenger car or motorcycle, as required under subsections A and B, and (ii) comply with the certification provisions of subsection E. The Department shall cancel the registrations of vehicles owned by persons that, prior to January 1, 2008, do not provide the Department (i) evidence of owning or having regular use of another autocycle, passenger car, or motorcycle as required under subsections A and B, and (ii) the certification required pursuant to subsection E.

Code 1950, § 46-99.1; 1954, c. 60; 1958, c. 541, § 46.1-104; 1980, c. 359; 1986, c. 8; 1989, cc. 338, 727; 1999, c. 292; 2000, c. 259; 2004, c. 796; 2007, c. 492; 2008, c. 159; 2014, cc. 53, 256.