Florida registration of electric scooters

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gushar
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Florida registration of electric scooters

OK. I moved this to a new thread since I have some specific info regarding this. A couple of folks on the forum have reported difficulties in registering electric scooters like the xm2000, etc. here in Florida. I sent the Florida DMV an email via their website inquiring about registration of such vehicles in Florida. Here is their reply:

***************
Motor Scooters are not defined in the Florida Statutes referring to titling and registering of vehicles. However, if they fit the definition of a motorcycle defined in the Florida Statutes they must be titled and registered if they are operated or driven upon the roads of Florida.

Florida Statutes defines "Motorcycle" - Any motor vehicle having a seat or saddle for the use of the rider and designed to travel on not more than three wheels in contact with the ground, but excluding a tractor or a moped. Title and Registration is required and can be operated on the roadways of Florida.

Florida Statutes defines "Moped" - Any vehicle with pedals to permit propulsion by human power, having a seat or saddle for the use of the rider and designed to travel on not more than three wheels; with a motor rated not in excess of 2 brake horsepower and not capable of propelling the vehicle at a speed greater than 30 miles per hour on level ground; and with a power-drive system that functions directly or automatically without clutching or shifting gears by the operator after the drive system is engaged. If an internal combustions engine is used, the displacement may not exceed 50 cubic centimeters. Registration is required, no title is required and the vehicle can be operated on the roadways of Florida.

Florida Statutes defines "Motorized Scooter" - Any vehicle not having a seat or saddle for the use of the rider, designed to travel on not more than three wheels, and not capable of propelling the vehicle at a speed greater than 30 miles per hour on level ground. This type scooter cannot be titled or registered in State of Florida and cannot be operated on the roadways or sidewalks.

Motorcycles (not mopeds) as defined in 320.01(27), Florida Statutes, are titled and registered pursuant to s. 319.20, Florida Statutes.

Mopeds as defined in 320.01(28), Florida Statutes, are NOT titled, per s. 319.20, Florida Statutes, however, they are registered pursuant to s. 320.0803(1), Florida Statutes. A bill of sale, vehicle registration certificate, Manufacturer's Certificate of Origin or an affidavit from the applicant certifying that he or she is the legal and rightful owner of the vehicle is required.

We hope this information will assist you.

Thanks,
Division of Motor Vehicles

*********************************

Notice that in the first paragraph they specifically state that "if" the vehicle fits the definition of a "motorcycle" and is not a moped (by definition) or a tractor...then it must be registered and titled to legally ride on the highway.

This is apparently the category where "gasoline" scooters are included for titling and licensing so apparently this would be where an electric scooter (not stand ups or mopeds, etc.) would be defined. Therefore, I am not understanding why anyone has had any problem registering an electric scooter in Florida?????

The following is directly from the Florida DMV website...concerning motorcycles, etc.:

**********
MOTORCYCLES, MOPEDS, AND DISABILITY ACCESS VEHICLES
II. GENERAL INFORMATION:
A. All motorcycles, mopeds and disability access vehicles are issued a regular motorcycle style license plate. These license plates must be renewed annually.
B. Dirt bikes noted for off road use, motorized bicycles and Go-Peds are not registered.
C. If a manufacturer's certificate of origin states the vehicle is a "motor scooter," the definition of "motorcycle" or "moped," as shown in sections 320.01(27) and (28), Florida Statutes, must be used as a guide to determine if the vehicle would be
titled/registered or just registered.
D. Any entity selling mopeds or selling motorcycles with a motor displacement of 50 CC's or less are NOT required to obtain a dealer's license.
E. Each motorcycle/moped/motor scooter where any of the registrants are under 21 years
of age must display a license plate that is unique in design and color.
III. OWNERSHIP DOCUMENTATION:
A. Motorcycles (not mopeds) as defined in 320.01(27), Florida Statutes, are titled and
registered pursuant to s. 319.20, Florida Statutes.
B. Mopeds as defined in 320.01(28), Florida Statutes, are NOT titled, per s. 319.20, Florida Statutes, however, they are registered pursuant to s. 320.0803(1), Florida Statutes. A bill of sale, vehicle registration certificate, Manufacturer's Certificate of Origin or an affidavit from the applicant certifying that he or she is the legal and rightful owner of the vehicle is required.
C. Motorized disability access vehicles as defined in s. 320.01(34), Florida Statutes, are NOT titled, however, they are registered pursuant to s. 320.08035, Florida Statutes. A bill of sale, vehicle registration certificate, Manufacturer's Certificate of Origin or an affidavit from the applicant certifying that he or she is the legal and rightful owner of the vehicle is required.

*****************
So, it seems to me that as well in the section (C) above it tells you specifically that if the certificate of origin describes it as a "motor scooter" then one has to then determine, once again by definition, if it is a moped or a motorcycle. And, looking at the definition an electric scooter like the xm2000,3000,3500...ZAP, E-Fun, etc. would fit the motorcycle defintion. Therefore, it seems again to me that registration should be a simple matter here in Florida. I read nothing, as one poster indicated, about a list that the electric vehicle has to be on to be titled and registered. It all seems pretty straight forward to me!

Gushar

gushar
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

And just another point here...

You might note that the xb600 like I have would ordinarily fall under the moped definition...which would require a tag but not a title. However, the fed law which x-treme lists on their website which exempts "electrically assisted bicycles" by definition from registration, etc. and makes them legal to ride anywhere a bicycle is legal supercedes this. I know one poster here disputes that interpretation of the fed law...but I disagree.

Just this weekend I was riding in a Target shopping center parking lot near my home and a local deputy sheriff stopped me. He was primarily supicious of the fact that I was simply riding around the parking lot and not stopping to go into any store. Guess he thought I might be a purse snatcher or up to no good! But once I assured him I was just riding for pleasure...he then began to tell me that my xb600 required a tag. I respectfully informed him that in fact it didn't because of a federal law which defined what I had as "an electrically assisted bicycle" and that law superceded any state law...that it was legal without any registration just as a bicycle in all 50 states...anywhere a bicycle was legal. I explained that even though it "looked" like a scooter...that didn't make it one by legal definition...and that in reality it would "normally" be defined by Florida law as a "moped". However, I then went on to explain that would be irrelevant as well because of the federal law which defines it as an "electrically assisted bicycle"....and supercedes Florida or any other state law. Once I finished my explanation he seemed to be, well for all intent and purposes, sort of overwhelmed by my knowledge...or supposed knowledge...of this subject area and the law. And he said, "well, I'd put those pedals back on (I don't ride with the pedals or the chain on) so it's clear what you have." And I said "well I could but I don't really use them." And at that point he said, "just have a nice day and be careful." And that was that.... Not the usual non-hassle that I get from the cops around here...state and local...but still I rode away with no problems from the encounter! :-)

Gushar

Gus

bocabikeguy
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

Electric scooters that don't fall under the classification of electric bicycle in Florida must be registered and titled as motorcycles. In Florida, nothing with a battery (read "electric starter motor" in the law) is a moped.

The problem with registration is that Florida has list of vehicles that can be titled and registered. The manufacturer must apply with the State of Florida to get on the list, along with a fee (a few hundred dollars) and an established Florida dealer. If the vehicle is not on the list, you are not SUPPOSED to be able to get a title and tags for it.

The application for a manufacturer to get their vehicle put on the list involves verification of a lot of financial information about the manufacturer and the dealer. From that standpoint, it is easier for a large company like Vespa to apply to get a new vehicle put on the list than for X-treme, for example.

But even large, financially solvent companies like Zap cannot seem to get vehicles approved and put on the list. It is entirely up to the Florida Department of State to decide whether to put a vehicle on the list or not, and having gone through this process three times already (as a Florida dealer), I can say that it is MUCH easier for an ICE vehicle to be approved and put on the list than for an electric vehicle. There is no law to point to that is at fault here (except the law that allows them to create "the list"), but the discretion of the government employees involved does not favor EV's.

Of the three applications I have submitted, only one has been approved, and that was three years ago. The other two are still "pending" and are likely to remain that way until there is a new Administration in Tallahassee. For the one EV that was approved, the eMax, we had to create an MCO that was different than what is used by any other state or country. Also, the big difference with the eMax was that the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) heavily went to bat for us trying to get our application approved. Those days are gone.

The bottom line is this, if X-treme has an established motorcycle dealer in Florida, they can apply to put a vehicle on the list in Florida. It only costs them time, trouble, and a few hundred dollars to try.

gushar
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

I see what you are saying here...and I intend to pose that to the DMV for a response.

This website is very interesting...

http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/cars/rules/import/FAQ%20Site/pages/page3.html#Anchor-20795

...and may be part of what you are specifically talking about here...because the fed procedures might not have been followed by some of the manufacturers...which would hinder registration in any state.

However, I'm not sure that what you state is something "political" or just something that the dealers have "not done" to comply with registration requirements for vehicles in Florida. Also, I disagree about electrically assisted bicycles. I continue to believe that the federal law takes them totally out from under any state motor vehicle law...just as it states...and puts them under "consumer laws" just as regular bicycles.

Gushar

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bocabikeguy
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

This website is very interesting...

http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/cars/rules/import/FAQ%20Site/pages/page3.html#Anchor-20795

...and may be part of what you are specifically talking about here...because the fed procedures might not have been followed by some of the manufacturers...which would hinder registration in any state.

Not really part of it at all. I am assuming that all electric vehicles that we want to get tags for in Florida comply with all FMVSS, are properly labelled, have a valid VIN and MCO. That's the easy part. The hard part is getting on the list.

Also, I disagree about electrically assisted bicycles. I continue to believe that the federal law takes them totally out from under any state motor vehicle law...just as it states...and puts them under "consumer laws" just as regular bicycles.

Then you disagree with the New York Department of Motor Vehicles, who published this information:

"[Motor-assisted bicycles] are not allowed on any street, highway, parking lot, sidewalk or other area that allows public motor vehicle traffic. You are subject to arrest if you operate one of these motorized vehicles and do not have a registration, driver license, inspection, insurance or correct equipment."

http://www.nydmv.state.ny.us/dmvfaqs.htm#motor

Ignorance of the law is not a valid excuse for breaking it.

smace
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

Fed law does not always trump state law. State law can always be more restrictive. See, for instance, the Ca standards for autos.

The List, standards for being on the list and the process to get on the list must be public record. Can we get these? or links to them? Does bocabikeguy still have copies of the paper work?

Some help may exist in the ICE engine version of these bikes being on the list. Mountain chen could tell us which, if any, are the names of the ice vesions.

Now would be a good time to pound on your state rep or senator. They might be more receptive during this time.

gushar
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

I'm going to go and read again the full text of the fed law. However, I do believe that it specifically states in the law that it supercedes ANY state law. It would almost have to in order to be effective as the law was intended.

I have also contacted the "consumer advocate" at the Florida Department of Motor Vehicles to pose all of these other questions regarding the more powerful scoots and I am most anxious to see just what they have to say. Certainly the person here who is a "dealer" for various products has had the experience that he has described. I can't dispute that. I do however believe there may be "confusion" going on...most of all within government agencies...about how some of our state laws are being applied in this regard.

In any event...I intend to get to the bottom of what the problems may be...and if we need new or amended laws regarding this...I'll be the first to contact the state representatives for my area as well as continue with this "consumer advocate office" to bring about some change if necessary. First, I want to know exactly from the government people who should know, what the situation is.

And again, as for the other matter with our "electrically assisted bicycles" I'm going to go straight to the text of that law once again and read it in it's entirety. I'm not a lawyer but in my line of "government" work I deal with laws and rules, both state and federal, on a regular basis. I can read them and I can get a reasonable sense of what they are stating.

Gushar

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bocabikeguy
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

Does X-treme have a motorcycle dealer in Florida willing to serve as a representative? That is the first step. If not, the X-treme dealer would have to get a dealership license. That involves completing the application, purchasing a $25,000 bond, getting Garage liability insurance, providing business lease or proof of ownership of the correctly zoned location, getting the DMV to sign off on the retail location, proof of completion of manufacturer's mechanics training course, providing business documents (corporate agreement, registration of fictitious trade name, sales tax number, and federal employee ID), and the fingerprints of the owner. (My guess is the fingerprints are so they know they got the right guy when they arrest you to harass you for trying to get an electric vehicle put on the list. ;-) ) That part is straightforward, and you pay a $347 fee. The $47 is for fingerprint processing.

Once you have the dealership license, the manufacturer can begin the process of applying to have the electric motorcycle put on the list. It is not hard to get the application - just call the DMV. The process involves paying an additional $300 fee and is not nearly as easy as getting a dealership license.

Like I said, I've been through all this before. I've done my time and I'm not willing to risk my freedom by trying to push the system anymore.

smace
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

I have located a local metro area dealer who indicates the 3000 and some of the smaller bikes for sale. I will go see them this weekend and see what I can find out. Besides, I want to look at some of these live.

gushar
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

As for one part of this....I have reread in several "government" not "dealer hype" websites the fed law on electrically assisted bicycles...under the consumer products safety law. I don't have a doubt that it specifically applies to the x-treme products that are the XB600, XB500 and XB508, and similar...since these meet all the technical requirements....regardless of their "appearance." There's no definition here by appearance. And, it states absolutely that this amended section supercedes any state law where the state law might have more stringent restrictions. Florida's laws regarding "electrically assisted bicycles" are more stringent...therefore they are superceded in that regard. Again, I am not an attorney but I believe this is very clear and understandable.

Gushar

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bocabikeguy
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

And, it states absolutely that this amended section supercedes any state law where the state law might have more stringent restrictions.

If you read the law carefully, you will understand it better. The single definition of electric bicycle you are referring to is part of the Hazardous Material law governed by the Consumer Products Safety Commission. The specific definition you are referring to is in part 1512, Requirements for Bicycles, that is part of Title 16, Commercial Practices. The requirements in part 1512 identify the safety features that are required by law to be on every bicycle sold in America, and also limits the liability of corporations that build bicycles that meet these requirements. The reference to more stringent state laws are there to limit the liability of corporations from having to adhere to more stringent SAFETY requirements that might be imposed by a state. For example, if a state required that bicycles be equipped with two headlights, a corporation could not successfully be sued for building a bicycle with one headlight, even if a cyclist was killed because a motorist could not see the bicycle with one headlight.

Here is the definition you are referring to:

http://tinyurl.com/6d7bhc

The very first words in this definition are, "For the purposes of this part:" This was put there to make it very clear that THIS definition of "bicycle" is meant ONLY for the purposes of the hazardous material act, Commercial Practices, Requirements for Bicycles of the Consumer Products Safety Commission. It is not meant to define "bicycle" for the purpose of the Department of Transportation, the Uniform Traffic Code, or for any other purpose whatsoever.

Unscrupulous eBike dealers often take this definition out of context to mislead people into believing that it is legal to use an electric bicycle on the street in parts of the US where it is NOT legal to use an electric bicycle on the street.

If you have any questions about the legality of using an electric bicycle in your area, you should ask your local Department of Motor Vehicles. We worked hard to make it legal to use electric bicycles in Florida with a minimum of restrictions. Unfortunately, not every state has followed suit.

gushar
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

FYI...from the President of Currie Technologies (the below email). Would you characterize these folks as "unscrupulous?" Would you think that they "might" actually utilize and seek the advice/legal interpretations of an attorney in the course of their business practices?

Have you contacted the ELECTRIC DRIVE TRANSPORTATION ASSOCIATION that is listed here? Never heard of them but perhaps they are a legitimate organization who can definitively answer this. Regardless I think I'll contact them and use your "argument" on this and see how they respond????

QUOTE:

Thanks for your email. I am not certain what the acronym "MSO" refers to
> however, I have attached some information that may be helpful to you. Also,
> you may want to contact the Electric Drive Transportation Association in
> Washington, DC to answer your questions about the law.
>
> As you can see from the Federal law that passed in January 2002, that low
> speed electric bicycles (all our products meet these qualifications to be
> defined as such) are to be considered consumer products and NOT motor
> vehicles. The law also states that it supersedes any State law that may be
> more restrictive or stringent.
>
> In Pennsylvania, the law on the books was written to address gas powered
> Mopeds that were popular in the 1970's and the Federal law was written this
> way specifically to address State Moped laws.
>
> I hope this helps and that you will be enjoying one of our electric bicycles
> very soon.
>
> Best regards,
>
> Larry Pizzi
>
> President
>
> CURRIE TECHNOLOGIES

_______________________

February 3, 2003
ELECTRIC BIKES RECLASSIFIED AS CONSUMER PRODUCTS
In December, President Bush signed into law legislation introduced by Representative Cliff Stearns (R-FL) that transfers jurisdiction over low-speed electric bikes from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), which already regulates consumer products such as bicycles. The law (Public Law 107-319/HR 727) defines a low-speed electric bicycle as a two- or three-wheeled vehicle with fully operable pedals and an electric motor of less than 750 watts (1 horsepower) and a maximum speed of 20 mph when ridden by an operator weighing 170 lbs. Further, the law clarifies that a low speed electric bicycle shall not be considered a motor vehicle, and therefore is not subject to motor vehicle safety standards and enforcement, but shall be subject to CPSC regulations. Under the law, CPSC has authority to promulgate new or additional regulations for such products. Finally, the new law supersedes any existing State laws that may be more stringent than the federal guidelines for such products. If you have questions about this issue, contact EDTA at 202.508-5995.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Gus

bocabikeguy
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

Yes, that is EXACTLY the kind of unscrupulous falsehood that SOME peddlers of eBikes and parts have been making for years. IMHO, it is this kind of sales practice that makes consumers mistrust electric vehicles and is part of the reason that electric vehicles have not become more popular in the US.

We are not all children in this country. Tell us the TRUTH. Especially, don't mislead us into buying a product that, if used as intended, causes us to break the law.

gushar
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

I have visited the website of Florida Congressman Cliff Stearns who is listed as a key person in the promulgation and passage of this federal legislation. I'm going to the source to find out once and for all...if that's possible! I'll report back as soon as I speak with his office.

Gushar

Gus

zerogas
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

Wow, guys. The xm 3000 ships with an mco and vin paperwork. Just register it as a motorcycle if need be. Why should the propulsion system matter? It's still a 2 wheeler(motorcycle,moped,scooter, whatever). Just my opinion

Keep the rubber side down and the shiny side up.

gushar
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

That's what I understand Zerogas...but Bocabikeguy seems to have had different experiences...some kind of "list" he says they have to be on...and on and on. I'm going to try and get to the bottom of all this. Today, I'm going to call the office of Florida Congressman Cliff Stearns who as indicated in the info I provided above sponsored the federal bill regarding electrically assisted bicycles. Once and for all I want to clear that up and what the intent of the legislation was. If I can get a direct answer from the source that should finally clear this up for everyone...at least regarding the ebikes. I'm also going to see if his office has any info about the more powerful electric scooters and registration in Florida.

Gushar

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gushar
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

Ok...update on this subject....

Today I contacted by phone the Florida office of Congressman Cliff Stearns...the Florida Congressman who sponsored this bill regarding electrically assisted bicycles. I spoke with his legislative assistant at length about HR 727...explaining all the controversy as it has been discussed here and other places. I have been told that they would "send" this matter up to Congressman Stearn's Washington office for clarification and answers to my questions.

I explained to his assistant here in Florida that not only was I asking for a clarification on my own behalf...but on behalf of electric vehicle enthusiasts everywhere in the US. I told them that I did not "officially" represent any EV organization but that I had decided to persue this task because (1) with the increasing cost of gasoline these type vehicles (ebikes) are, and may be the only affordable, alternative to many consumers, and (2)that I wanted to help end the confusion for EV enthusiasts nationwide by getting a clarification from the source of this legislation--and communicating that clarification via electric vehicle forums. I was told they would definitely provide me with a clarification.

Second, I contacted the office of Florida State Legislator, Dave Murzin, who is the representative of my district here in Florida. I explained my inquiry was regarding the registration process for electric motorcycles and electric scooters here in the State of Florida. I explained all the controversy surrounding this matter as well...in detail, giving examples, etc. I also presented this in the following specific question:
"If I purchase an electric motorcycle or electric scooter, that by definition meets the technical criteria in Florida motor vehicle statutes as a "motorcycle," AND I have the appropriate MCO and VIN number, AND it is fully DOT compliant as far as equipment and safety features, is there ANY other process or ANY other considerations that are involved in my registering and licensing this vehicle as a motorcycle to be driven on Florida streets and roadways?...is there some "vehicle" list that this has to be on...etc., etc.. And, I further explained that IF in fact there are problems registering these vehicles as motorcycles...like any gasoline motorcycle....then I want to talk further with the Representative/his staff...about his sponsoring some legislation to remove these obstacles. I described to his staff member that with the increasing cost of gasoline many Florida citizens would find a viable alternative in these type electric "motorcycles/scooters." And, that in some cases for many this may be the ONLY viable alternative...considering affordability, etc...and that if Florida motor vehicle laws/and or procedures were making it difficult or impossible for these to be registered...just as any gasoline motorcycle...then these laws had to be changed or the citizens of this state are at a great disadvantage with the present and future energy situation that this entire country is experiencing.

I'm not so naive as one poster here described me...as to believe that these initial contacts, in both matters, will get us the answers we want. However, I believe I was taken quite seriously by each office. I am 53 years old, I do as well actually work for a "large" State of Florida public organization, and I made absolutely sure that I explained to these folks that I (1) would be communicating their response to EV enthusiasts nationwide and for that matter worldwide, and that (2) I have and intend to continue to be a "guest" on local and regional media (radio, television) to talk about electric vehicles as a viable alternative to gasoline and I want to continue to present accurate information to the public. I also explained to them that my formal education (BA/MA)is in "Communication Arts" and I spent 10 years of my professional life in radio and television so I feel very comfortable on these type programs and have working relationships with many in local and regional media in this area of Florida. So, perhaps that additional info that I shared will give them more incentive to respond to my inquiry since I told them that I intend to continue talking about these issues in "public" venues...forums and the media.

Stay tuned....

Gushar

Gus

MikeB
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

Just to add some info from my research, here in Georgia they passed a bill to modify the state code for 'Electric Assist Bicycles'. As far as I can tell, they essentially said that 'If a bike meets the Federal definition of electric assist bicycle, here's how State laws apply to it on the road'.

http://www.legis.state.ga.us/legis/1995_96/leg/fulltext/hb1506.htm

Of course, anything with more than 1kW doesn't count as an electric assist bicycle, it then falls under the category of a moped or motorcycle, so there are more laws to inspect.

I'm guessing that Florida will have done something similar, taken the Federal definition and said 'here's how this new category is going to be handled.'

My electric vehicle: CuMoCo C130 scooter.

gushar
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

Yes but what Bocabikeguy is stating is that the federal law defining ebikes which places them for "certain" purposes under Consumer Safety laws...only relates in regard to safety issues, standards, etc. And, that it doesn't have anything to do with definitions, requirements, etc. under state motor vehicle laws. I'm hoping that my initial inquiry to the source of the federal bill HR727 will get a response with specific clarification. Until then, I'm not going to debate this any longer. I could be correct in my original understanding, or I could be wrong. We'll see.

Gushar

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gushar
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

I suspect it will be awhile before I hear back on my inquires mentioned above about Florida and federal law. In the meantime I want to mention the following regarding "electric bicycles" like our XB600s, etc.

I read all definitions of scooters, motorized scooters, bicycles and motorcycles from the Florida statutes. I don't think there is any doubt that our scoots like the xb600 would fall into the category "bicycle." The definition of "bicycle" includes a definition of electric bicycles and pretty much matches the federal law that is mentioned in the beginning of this thread...with the exception that I don't recall it listing a specific maximum wattage of motor. Even if one, like myself, is riding without the pedals and without the chain that should really be irrelevant in my opinion. It doesn't change the definition. The law doesn't state you "have" to be using any particular equipment. It does include in the definition the description "helper motor" but there is no part of the law that says you cannot use "solely" the helper motor to propel the bicycle. I think most often what you'll get from police officers is the same as I got recently..."might want to put the pedals on so I can tell what it is." I know some police officers and the last thing they really want to do is to have to go to court and defend a ticket, etc. Therefore, I continue (until something else relevant is brought to my attention) to believe that my xb600 is an "electric bicycle" in Florida and only subject to state "bicycle" regulations...and that even riding without the pedals and chain won't really be a problem.

Gushar

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smace
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

Quote from another thread:

Contact your local DMV office.

This is good first advice no matter where you are if you want to check if it is legal to use your electric bicycle / scooter / motorcycle on the street.

In Florida, you will have to get a title and registration from your local tax assessor's office. The computer system they use now has a "drop-down list" for manufacturer and a "drop-down list" for the model number. They used to be able to type in to override the list selections, but it is my understanding that they cannot override the manufacturer and model number any more. So, if your bike is not on the list, either they have to "pretend" it is a different manufacturer and/or model, or you won't get tags. In recent years, they have been getting very strict about not issuing title or tags for any vehicle not on the list.

I posted earlier about the process a manufaturer must go through to get on the list.

The DMV might not be familiar with what is required at the tax assessor's office to enter your registration into their computers. They might also just tell you that, "yes, you have to register it."

It is my understanding that the computer system used at the tax assessor's office to do registrations is under the control of the Florida Department of State. This is the department that Katherine Harris used to run, so you know how political it is. From what I have seen, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) is very pro-EV and the DMV (actually DHSMV) is closely tied to FDOT. But the tax assessor's office is the hurdle here, and it is a tough nut to crack.

This tells us "The list" may not be a legal thing, but an IT process. He had posted in another discussion, the process to add to the list. I do not know if that makes it any easier to change the process, but maybe. If it is a law, than it requires a change in the law. If it is an amdinistrative process, a directive from the correct department may be able to make the change. A user entry field woudl be useful.

proton
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

Your 1st mistake was buying from xtreem
have you asked about getting a refund ?
the xb600 is not an ebike...the tidal force was an ebike

The LiFepo4 BattMan www.falconev.com

keyboardguy1
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

I am waiting for imminent delivery of my new electric cycle and live in Fort Lauderdale. I may be ignorant but how can a dealership just 40 minutes north of me in Boca Raton be selling Zapinos with aplomb and apparently having them easily registered as motorcycles. I called the dealer (forgot its name, sorry) and the salesman said that it was no problem registering the Zapino. Has anyone bought one from this dealer? Just curious.

jdh2550_1
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

Proton - please just go away we know you don't like X-Treme (or xtreem - you can't even spell the company you're bashing! Nice one!)

John H. Founder of Current Motor Company - opinions on this site belong to me; not to my employer
Remember: " 'lectric for local. diesel for distance" - JTH, Amp Bros || "No Gas.

jdh2550_1
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

There are definitely two completely different issues being discussed.

I'm most interested in the one surrounding "the list" that Florida apparently maintains and one must pay a couple of hundred bucks and submit the bike to some kind of inspection?

Boca - can you provide us any details like where to find this list? How to apply? Details of your pending applications? You provide just enough information to pique our interest but not quite enough to satisfy our desire to figure out how to proceed!

FYI, X-Treme does have a dealer in Florida and I will ask X-Treme if they know of this list and if they're on it or not. Unlike what folks will have you believe they spent quite a lot of time, effort and money this time around dealing with registration and titling for the XM-3000 and XM-3500.

On the "electric assisted bike" issue: in Michigan it appears that the State laws do not allow for anything that has a motor and pedals to be classified as an electric assisted bike. There is no such classification. They specifically refer to the confusion that exists regarding the fed law and the state attorney says that it doesn't apply. This means that if it has a motor (regardless of the existence of pedals) that it needs to have a VIN and DOT equipment and be registered as a moped or registered and titled as a motorcycle (if it has more than 1.5hp and goes faster than 30mph).

One aspect to also consider is that these laws exist but aren't necessarily well enforced. I know of at least one individual who has a 150cc scooter that is registered as a moped (not registered and titled as a motorcycle).

So, not even DIY hub motors on mountain bikes are legal in Michigan following a strict interpretation of the law - but we still see them on the roads...

BTW - thanks to another V member who took the time to figure out the Michigan laws and posted the results. We had an offline conversation and she persuaded me that I was wrong and that the fed law does not override the state law. I got persuaded enough to simply stop selling the XB line of electric assisted bikes.

Gushar, I strongly suspect it's the same in Florida - but thanks for all your hard work and keep us posted

But please someone tell me about "The List" - isn't that the name of a John Grisham novel?

John H. Founder of Current Motor Company - opinions on this site belong to me; not to my employer
Remember: " 'lectric for local. diesel for distance" - JTH, Amp Bros || "No Gas.

spike
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

hey people the list your looking for is under title and lien TL 10 page three on their web site

jdh2550_1
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

Thanks Spike!

Here's a link to TL10: http://www3.hsmv.state.fl.us/Intranet/dmv/Manuals/DMVProcedures/BTR/tl/TL-10.pdf and here's a link to "the list" itself: http://www.flhsmv.gov/Intranet/DMV/Bulletins/Motor_Scooter_list.htm

If you look at page 3 of the PDF and look at section F:

F. Any MCO for a MOTORCYCLE as defined in sections 320.01(27), Florida Statutes,
which is NOT required to be sold by a licensed dealer (with a motor displacement of
50 CC's or less), as outlined in s. 320.27(1)(b), Florida Statutes, must be approved by
the department. MCO's for mopeds do NOT have to be approved, as they are only
registered. The department will maintain a web site which contains a list of all newly
approved MCO's for the motorcycles. The address for the web site is:

http://www.hsmv.state.fl.us/Intranet/DMV/Bulletins/Motor_Scooter_list.htm

NOTE: This list should not be used for motorcycles with a displacement of more
than 50 cc’s. A dealer license is required if the displacement is above 50
cc’s.

With a very literal/strict interpretation of that wording (and some will say that's the only interpretation) then Alpha Products International (API) should be on the list because an EV has zero CC. However, API (manufacturer of the X-Treme brand) are operating under the assumption that their motorcycles (as defined by 320.01(27)) do NOT satisfy 320.27(1)(b) and thus must be sold by a dealer. Early this year they informed drop shippers that they could no longer directly sell to customers. This is why I became a commissioned sales rep for a dealer - I can't sell you the bikes directly - I can't take financial ownership of the bikes. Officially I'm a "vehicle broker". My belief is that from a customer service standpoint this doesn't make very much difference - I do try and state this clearly on the page that is displayed before you get to the order form.

Gushar, bottom line is I think an XM-3000 or XM-3500 will be fine because the MCO will list the manufacturer as Alpha Products International and there will be a licensed dealer listed as dealer. I'll let you know exactly what my MCO says when I get it. Do any XM-3000 owners have their MCOs and could tell us who is listed as "dealer"?

My guess is Spike ran into problems because the XM-2000 was sold under the direct sales model where the drop shipper sold the bike to Spike and as there was no dealer listed on the MCO the Florida DMV needed to see the bike on "the list". When it wasn't there it meant that they couldn't title it.

Keyboardguy - you might run into issues because your bike wasn't sold to you by a dealer but was a direct sale. Good luck.

So, do any other states have a similar approach to this? (i.e. a category for bikes that aren't mopeds and need to be titled but can be sold directly without going via a dealer - I think that's the situation for the "list")

Of course, standard disclaimer applies, I'm not a lawyer - this is my understanding of what I just read. What do others think?

John H. Founder of Current Motor Company - opinions on this site belong to me; not to my employer
Remember: " 'lectric for local. diesel for distance" - JTH, Amp Bros || "No Gas.

bocabikeguy
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

the xb600 is not an ebike...the tidal force was an ebike

In Florida, the xb-600 is DEFINITELY an ebike, and is legal to use on the street. At least, it is until you add a fifth battery.

In Florida, the TidalForce "X" was not an ebike, it was a motorcycle, and could not be legally used on the street.

I've been around Florida EV's and EV riders a long time, and I have never heard of anyone getting a ticket for having an ebike that goes too fast (within reason), or even a legal gas moped that goes over 30. I'm not saying that nobody will ever get a ticket for modding their bike, but it seems to be rare. Yet, any ebike that goes over 20 unassisted, by law, is illegal in Florida, unless it gets motorcycle plates.

While I am on the topic of illegal ebikes that probably won't get you in trouble in Florida... anything that looks like a scooter seems to be invisible to police, at least here in South Florida. Cyclists and e-cyclists routinely get stopped, questioned and ID'd by police, but scooter riders don't seem to ever get stopped. That might be different in the Keys where there are a sizeable number of scooters on the road.

We have four TidalForces and at least four scooter-style eBikes on the road, and the TF's get pulled over on a fairly regular basis, but the scooters have, so far, never been stopped. Still, no policeman has ever questioned that our TidalForce X is an eBike, even though the e-cyclist gets questioned and ID'd.

It is all a matter of definition and legal nuance.

ArcticFox
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

In Florida, the xb-600 is DEFINITELY an ebike, and is legal to use on the street.

Don't listen to proton - he's a 16 year old forum troll who doesn't know the difference between reality and his own imagination.

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jdh2550_1
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

I've been around Florida EV's and EV riders a long time ... It is all a matter of definition and legal nuance.

Boca -

I very much agree with your last statement and I very much respect the fact that you have direct experience with EVs over a long period of time. Can you confirm if the 3 applications that you made to have manufacturers added to "the list" were for bikes that were going to be sold direct to customers as opposed to being sold as motorcycles from a licensed dealer?

To me it appears to be that the key distinction when the customer attempts to title the bike in Florida is that the Florida DMV looks on the MCO and expects to see a registered dealer listed. If the MCO does state a registered dealer then the titling should be able to proceed just fine. However, if the MCO does not state a registered dealer then the manufacturer must appear on "the list" (thus assuring the DMV employee that the MCO has been approved by the Florida DMV)

Or, is my interpretation wrong?

Thanks!

John H. Founder of Current Motor Company - opinions on this site belong to me; not to my employer
Remember: " 'lectric for local. diesel for distance" - JTH, Amp Bros || "No Gas.

bocabikeguy
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Re: Florida registration of electric scooters

I submitted applications for three "motorcycles" and only one has been added to the list and two are, seemingly permanently, pending. Under Florida none of them are mopeds because they have batteries and don't have pedals... so they are motorcycles.

I had to get a dealer's license, but I am not sure if that is still required. At the time, if you sold bikes that could go faster than 30MPH or have displacement more than 50CC then you needed a dealer's license. From a manufacturer's perspective, if the bike is less than 50CC, which includes all eBikes, then you have to have the MCO approved by the DHSMV, which probably means that the MCO for Florida will be different than the MCO for other states. The dealer for these vehicles might not have to be licensed, because the MCO will provide the information needed by the tax assessor to apply for the title. Otherwise, the dealer will apply for the title on behalf of the customer.

But the list of approved MCO's is not the biggest issue for someone applying for title and registration. It is my understanding that even a non-compliant MCO can be used for title and plates. All dealers can submit title applications for non-compliant MCO's.

The list that seems to be the problem is the list used by the tax assessor's office of motor vehicles approved for sale by the state. If your make and model isn't there, they probably won't give you tags for it.

All of the above information about compliant and non-compliant MCO's is based on my best recollection. I know we had to make changes to the MCO for the one bike that was approved. Beyond that, it wasn't a big concern for me because of the processes in place for titling and registering non-compliant MCO's.

MCO approval is part of the same application process, though.

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