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Here's why you still can't legally buy a brand-new replica car

The stalled legislation is being held up by NHTSA

It's been four years since U.S. President Barack Obama signed the Low Volume Motor Vehicle Manufacturers Act of 2015, sometimes referred to as the Replica Car Bill, into law. Still, according to a report from the Detroit Free Press, small companies that specialize in producing replicas of vehicles that are at least 25 years old aren't yet able to legally sell those vehicles in the United States or elsewhere due to a holdup at the National Highway Safety Administration.

These vehicles differ from restorations in that they don't start with a previously assembled automobile that was issued a Vehicle Identification Number. And unlike kit cars that require a builder to finish assembly, these replicas would be sold as new, fully functional cars ready to drive right away. The legislation would allow small automakers to sell up to 5,000 replica vehicles per year, with as many as 325 of them earmarked for customers in the United States. The Environmental Protection Agency already performed its duties by passing regulations covering the powertrain and emissions packages that could be used in these replica cars and trucks, but rules from NHTSA covering safety aspects have stalled.

Click here to read the full Free Press report, which includes commentary on the regulations and NHTSA's holdup from Stuart Gosswein, director of government affairs for the Specialty Equipment Market Association, better known as SEMA.

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