EPA Approves Exemptions for Classic Car Emission Testing

Collectable cars and trucks can soon skip emissions testing in Arizona’s Maricopa and Pima Counties.

The Environmental Protection Agency approved Arizona legislation that will allow vehicles 15 years or older to skip emissions for registration. However, the cars must be true show cars or hobbyist items that carry collector-car insurance, which limits annual mileage and restricts use.

The EPA agreed with findings by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality that such vehicles have a “negligible impact” on air quality in the Phoenix and Tucson areas.

“We’ve been saying all along that we’re not part of the problem, that collector cars produce insignificant emissions,” said Bill Gilmore, a longtime auto hobbyist and legislative lobbyist for collector-car groups. “If we’re not part of the problem, we shouldn’t be part of the solution.”

The EPA action also approved exempting motorcycles in the Tucson area from emissions testing.

About 7,000 vehicles statewide meet the stipulations for exemption and about 6,200 motorcycles meet them in Pima County.

The state Legislature passed the exemptions bill in April 2005. It was then signed by Gov. Janet Napolitano and submitted to the EPA for hearings and study.

The state exemptions are expected to take effect about March 1.