California Proposes $200 Fee to Allow Older Cars to Skip Smog Test

Jason Siu
by Jason Siu
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california proposes 200 fee to allow older cars to skip smog test

If you’re a classic car owner in California, the smog test might become the last of your worries.

The state of California has introduced legislation that would allow certain vehicle owners to pay a $200 smog abatement fee in lieu of passing the smog test. Currently, the smog check program in California requires inspection of motor vehicles upon initial registration, biennially upon renewal of registration, upon transfer of ownership and in certain other circumstances. The existing law already exempts motor vehicles manufactured before the 1976 model year, but what about those cars that were manufactured after and aren’t able to pass the smog test?

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The new legislation, A.B. 550, would allow owners of vehicles that are 30 or more model-years old (manufactured during or after 1976 model year) to pay a $200 fee if their car fails a smog test and fails a subsequent round of testing after all the necessary upgrades were made. Considering California has the strictest vehicle emissions laws in the U.S., the passing of the bill would likely be welcomed by classic car owners in the state.

Jason Siu
Jason Siu

Jason Siu began his career in automotive journalism in 2003 with Modified Magazine, a property previously held by VerticalScope. As the West Coast Editor, he played a pivotal role while also extending his expertise to Modified Luxury & Exotics and Modified Mustangs. Beyond his editorial work, Jason authored two notable Cartech books. His tenure at saw him immersed in the daily news cycle, yet his passion for hands-on evaluation led him to focus on testing and product reviews, offering well-rounded recommendations to AutoGuide readers. Currently, as the Content Director for VerticalScope, Jason spearheads the content strategy for an array of online publications, a role that has him at the helm of ensuring quality and consistency across the board.

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