The California Air Resources Board recently announced that by the year 2020 trucks will need to meet health-based requirements in order to obtain Department of Motor Vehicles registrations.

Year 2011 or Newer

In 2020, trucks are required by CARB to be model year 2011 or newer or repowered with a 2010 or newer engine as part of an effort to improve air quality and reduce emissions.  CARB adds, however, that the Truck and Bus Regulation is already in effect, and that the Board can place a DMV regulation block on vehicles now, before the final compliance dates, if they don’t meet current air quality regulations.

Trucks that are not in compliance can be placed on a DMV registration block. California is enforcing all diesel regulations in preparation for new laws taking effect in 2020.


Vehicles exempt from all heavy-duty diesel regulations or have met all requirements will be able to register with the DMV. VIN numbers may be required to ensure vehicles are not accidentally denied registration.

CARB regulations also apply to vehicles with a Gross Vehicle Weight rating between 14,001 and 26,000 pounds.

Allowable Compliance Option

Affected vehicles may obtain DMV registration if they are using “an allowable compliance option, which must be reported in the Truck Regulation Upload, Compliance and Reporting System,” according to CARB.

For more information about CARB’s truck and bus regulations, visit