California has passed new a new law that further regulates the car-buying process, and the changes appear to be mostly positive. Automotive News reports that, beginning next July, dealers will need to slap a red warning sticker on any vehicle with a salvage title. That means any vehicle that has been legally deemed flood-damaged, junked or salvaged will receive the ominous label.

The new law will also mandate the use of electronic vehicle registration for new and used vehicle sales. This system will reportedly result in faster registrations, and a license plate will arrive in six weeks, which sounds good compared to the six months under the current system.

The dealers of California will need to pony up as a result of the new law, but in the end, the customer always foots the bill. The new legislation allows dealers to up documentation charges from $45 for leases and $55 for sales to $80 for both. That sounds like a lot, but AN points out that California car buyers will still pay less for documentation than all but one other state in the Union.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 32 Comments
      Pete K
      • 3 Years Ago
      Although, the reason for the salvage title should be a mandatory. Not all salvage titled cars are equally as bad...
      Making11s
      • 3 Years Ago
      I got my license plates on the same day I registered when I went to the DMV. What's this six months nonsense? Also, don't dealers know which of their cars are salvaged titles already? Why should they be allowed to charge for this?
      Andrew Zotos Breslin
      • 3 Years Ago
      my santa fe started just fine when it was in that deep water. hyundai ftw.
        mylz
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Andrew Zotos Breslin
        haha most hyundais dont start normally... at least from what i have seen
          creamwobbly
          • 3 Years Ago
          @mylz
          Oh the engines run fine. It's just the way power's delivered to the wheels, braking, ride, ergonomics, visibility... I've had a better experience from Ladas than from Hyundais and Kias -- though I'm willing to give the new Kia Soul a chance, given the review that mentioned its ride was much better than the 2011 version. Finally, eh?
        axiomatik
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Andrew Zotos Breslin
        I've looked into the engine bays of that generation of Santa Fe. I am pretty sure the engine would almost entirely be under water.
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        Ikazuchi
        • 3 Years Ago
        Yes, everybody loves internet porn and now anybody can do it with a webcam.
        Making11s
        • 3 Years Ago
        Surely multiple people have clicked "report abuse" over the last two hours, so why is this still here?
      adam1keith1980
      • 3 Years Ago
      Good. Car dealerships (both sales and services) are so unethical, even the most educated person get cheated sometimes. This is a good step!
        Car Guy
        • 3 Years Ago
        @adam1keith1980
        Only for stupid people who don't know better.....
      Autoblogist
      • 3 Years Ago
      Excellent idea, that should be federal law.
        creamwobbly
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Autoblogist
        Hm. Depends which side of the line this falls on: is it safety, or is it consumer protection? If it can be shown that a sufficiently high percentage (and because we're talking safety, it would be quite a low threshold, say, >2%) of salvaged vehicles are unsafe, then go for it. Otherwise, no. Individual economies should decide for matters that are not *directly* related to automotive safety.
          Making11s
          • 3 Years Ago
          @creamwobbly
          I disagree. Consumer protection is important enough to warrant this by itself. Surely we don't want to encourage bad business practices by turning a blind eye to them. Do you think so many people would have purchased houses they couldn't afford if they knew what the balloon payment would be in 5 years or that the interest would shoot up from 4% to 12%?
      brian
      • 3 Years Ago
      Isn't that why someone invented CarFax?
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      Ikazuchi
      • 3 Years Ago
      How is $80 a lot? Especially when you're buying a car? It's the sales tax that always hits me when I'm going through the final numbers.
      carguy
      • 3 Years Ago
      What if someone buys an auctioned car and repairs it to a point that you can't tell if it was salvaged, and then sells it off to a private buyer? How is the new owner is going to know if it's an auctioned car?
      PapaPump
      • 3 Years Ago
      would be great, if dealers didn't find ways to "unsalvage" cars that are technically total losses. seems to me that the only people who end up w/ salvage titles are individuals that keep their "totaled" cars after being paid out by the insurance, and actually go through the process of applying for a salvage title. other cars that are surrendered to insurance companies are somehow auctioned off and sold w/ clean titles.
        2 Wheeled Menace
        • 3 Years Ago
        @PapaPump
        My girlfriend bought one of those. It was a 1 year old 2007 dodge charger. She did not get any sort of low pricing on it either. We went through hell to get it sold. Clean title in Oregon... salvaged/totaled title in Illinois... and apparently it came from Canada.. It was bought through a reputable dealer as well.
        dukeisduke
        • 3 Years Ago
        @PapaPump
        Yep, there are ways of laundering titles. And CarFax has gotten expensive. It used to be that you could buy one record check for $15, or 30 days unlimited for $20, but recently I was looking for a vehicle, and had to pay $44.95 just for five reports over a 30-day period..
      Tim Monahan
      • 3 Years Ago
      Ha! $80 bucks, thats nothin. Down here is NC, 495 + for doc fees
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