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The Texas Delivery & Registration Process

radelman601

Member
Dec 1, 2015
28
18
San Antonio, TX
Howdy.

I'm sure this has probably been chatted about before but I figured I'd just ask and perhaps get a more recent take on it. Our new Model S90D will be shipped to Austin late next week and we anticipate taking delivery the following week.

Can someone who has recently gone through the process explain the whole enchilada to me?
You get the temporary registration sticker from California but what does that do for you?
I know you can apply for a 30-day temporary permit while you work to get the car registered but when should you apply for it? I'm just trying to figure out what all is needed after taking custody of the car, driving around Austin and back to San Antonio without getting stopped for breaking the law?

Thanks in advance!
 

bollar

Disgruntled Member
May 1, 2013
2,667
881
Southlake, TX
Nothing has changed. It's legal to drive with the California temporary sticker for 30 days, but some law enforcement officers misunderstand and issue citations for it - the citation will be thrown out in court, but you can save yourself the potential grief by getting the Texas Vehicle Transportation Permit. It's $25: https://rts.texasonline.state.tx.us/TempPermit/#nbb
 
Last edited:

Jagwease

Member
Dec 12, 2014
60
44
New Braunfels, TX
Howdy.

I'm sure this has probably been chatted about before but I figured I'd just ask and perhaps get a more recent take on it. Our new Model S90D will be shipped to Austin late next week and we anticipate taking delivery the following week.

Can someone who has recently gone through the process explain the whole enchilada to me?
You get the temporary registration sticker from California but what does that do for you?
I know you can apply for a 30-day temporary permit while you work to get the car registered but when should you apply for it? I'm just trying to figure out what all is needed after taking custody of the car, driving around Austin and back to San Antonio without getting stopped for breaking the law?

Thanks in advance!


Having just taken delivery in Austin on 8 August in the new facility, this is what will happen.

1) You will get an email from your DS. detailing the steps forward.

2) assuming you Finance all or part, within 30 days of your delivery you will secure financing. I did Alliant. The online app was easy and had a phone call with Alliant to complete te loan process. Phone call took 10 minutes. If cash then you have your bank transfer ready before step 4. You don't have to pay until step 4.

3) You will get a FEDEX package from TESLA with your California temporary registration paperwork about 10 days prior to estimated delivery. I did NOT have to sign for it. It will ask you to sign some documents and place them in a return fedex envelope. Your California Temp tag is in that package. Don't send it back

4) Your DS (Krystal for me) will give you an expected date of delivery. They will not let the car cross the Texas border without being paid in full. I have heard things in Dallas may be different. I paid up and it would have been delivered three days after payment (I deferred due to vacation).

5) If you have a trade in, they will give you an initial estimate. You will then take pictures to confirm conditions. My estimate was High end of fair condition. I expected that because my car had been in an accident (but repaired). I may have gotten $500 or so going with Car max or more with Private Sale (2010 Prius), but it was not worth the hassle.

6) My Delivery was on a Monday, At delivery,they did at best a cursory view of trade in and had me sign trade in paperwork. They probably faxed that paperwork to California. We got the tour of the car and the keys. I hit accept delivery on her iPad. Tesla App and Slacker were active in less than 30 minutes. That was on a Monday. While at the Delivery center, I bought a tire kit ($50) and a CHAdeMO adapter. They had both in stock. Saved me the shipping cost. My goodie bag was an umbrella, pin, pen, mug, and Tesla Service card. They should deliver your car charged. Mine was not due to opening day glitches.

7) I drove the car home and the next day- Tuesday - to Jay's Detailing for XPel, Cquartz and tinting. Picked it up that Friday.

8) That Wednesday I received all my final paperwork from Tesla to register my car through FedEx overnight. Certificate of Origin, etc.

9) Your car will already have an inspection document in the glove compartment

10) I will take my car to the County Tax office on Monday and write them a big ol check and they will do the paperwork to Title the car in Texas and I will take my plates from my old car that I had Tesla remove and put them on my new one (or you can get new plates).

11)There are some here that have tried and a few successfully (for now) to get it registered as a car that can be powered by hydrogen, I do not believe this meets the intent or wording of the statute, but I am a Georgia lawyer who now lives in Texas and you do what you wish.

A few things you may want to think about ahead of time. The center console Apple dock is will not fit an iPhone while it is in the case. You may want to buy a lightning connector to lightning connector adapter. I bought this (has not arrived yet):

https://smile.amazon.com/iNINJA-TM-...e+6,6s+plus,Iphone+5+5s+Ipad+4+Ipad+Mini+Ipad

I would assume there would be the same issue with Android and cases and the on-board phone charger.

- Plan how you will inspect your car. I had a finish problem that they were able to quickly fix.

- Have your HPWC installed. I am waiting for my electrician to install because I ordered late and it took them a long time to deliver it. I am charging on 30 amps and it is pedestrian. My builder will find out why the electrician only put a 30 amp fuse on my NEMA 14-50 outlet, but until it is fixed I can only charge at 30 amps not 40, let alone 72.

-The default for TESLA is for you to sign for (almost) everything, I live in an area where that is unnecessary, but I did not change my preferences with TESLA. I am not sure I would want my final registration paperwork subject to the crazy Texas weather. I had it delivered to a FEDEX office and picked it up on the way home. Very easy.

12) if you have Sirius/XM, be prepared for the colonoscopy of switching service to a new radio if you had service in your trade in. It took over an hour to get it done.

13) the day after delivery, your DS will (probably, Krystal did) send you links with helpful information and contact numbers.

Hope this helps!

J
 
Last edited:

Sister12

New Member
Nov 14, 2016
1
0
San Antonio, Tx
Jagwease,

Really appreciative for the detailed info! I pick my Tesla up this Saturday in Austin, TX SC. I researched the forum to see if I could register my EV prior to picking it up for the reasons a few mentioned, but more importantly, to get ahead of possible headaches with lines, at the DMV and the LAW. Anyway, I've emailed the Tesla folks for my UserID and password to my SlackerRadio acct, and they replied back very fast! I am applying settings per my preference and also adjusting premium sound output (Got that info from the forum as well).

Is there any information in Texas if one wanted to order customized plates for EV's? Wonder will the DMV allow me to do this without the vehicle being physically in my custody? I understand the 6.25% sales tax, but I don't like the run around with State Tax incentives for Tesla in TX. - WHEW! Texas legislatures really need to stop playing around with EV's, and allow a free market.

THANKS AGAIN! for the detailed info. BTW.... Kristal was my DS as well! Alliant was the bank I chose with 1.99% APR w/ Jon being the loan officer! These two people really are professional - and have their smart hats on helping consumers!

Finally, I will be driving back down to San Antonio (Stone Oak area) on Saturday with my new TOY! I will use the same folks you mention above for car detailing!

Best Regards,
D. Upshaw






Having just taken delivery in Austin on 8 August in the new facility, this is what will happen.

1) You will get an email from your DS. detailing the steps forward.

2) assuming you Finance all or part, within 30 days of your delivery you will secure financing. I did Alliant. The online app was easy and had a phone call with Alliant to complete te loan process. Phone call took 10 minutes. If cash then you have your bank transfer ready before step 4. You don't have to pay until step 4.

3) You will get a FEDEX package from TESLA with your California temporary registration paperwork about 10 days prior to estimated delivery. I did NOT have to sign for it. It will ask you to sign some documents and place them in a return fedex envelope. Your California Temp tag is in that package. Don't send it back

4) Your DS (Krystal for me) will give you an expected date of delivery. They will not let the car cross the Texas border without being paid in full. I have heard things in Dallas may be different. I paid up and it would have been delivered three days after payment (I deferred due to vacation).

5) If you have a trade in, they will give you an initial estimate. You will then take pictures to confirm conditions. My estimate was High end of fair condition. I expected that because my car had been in an accident (but repaired). I may have gotten $500 or so going with Car max or more with Private Sale (2010 Prius), but it was not worth the hassle.

6) My Delivery was on a Monday, At delivery,they did at best a cursory view of trade in and had me sign trade in paperwork. They probably faxed that paperwork to California. We got the tour of the car and the keys. I hit accept delivery on her iPad. Tesla App and Slacker were active in less than 30 minutes. That was on a Monday. While at the Delivery center, I bought a tire kit ($50) and a CHAdeMO adapter. They had both in stock. Saved me the shipping cost. My goodie bag was an umbrella, pin, pen, mug, and Tesla Service card. They should deliver your car charged. Mine was not due to opening day glitches.

7) I drove the car home and the next day- Tuesday - to Jay's Detailing for XPel, Cquartz and tinting. Picked it up that Friday.

8) That Wednesday I received all my final paperwork from Tesla to register my car through FedEx overnight. Certificate of Origin, etc.

9) Your car will already have an inspection document in the glove compartment

10) I will take my car to the County Tax office on Monday and write them a big ol check and they will do the paperwork to Title the car in Texas and I will take my plates from my old car that I had Tesla remove and put them on my new one (or you can get new plates).

11)There are some here that have tried and a few successfully (for now) to get it registered as a car that can be powered by hydrogen, I do not believe this meets the intent or wording of the statute, but I am a Georgia lawyer who now lives in Texas and you do what you wish.

A few things you may want to think about ahead of time. The center console Apple dock is will not fit an iPhone while it is in the case. You may want to buy a lightning connector to lightning connector adapter. I bought this (has not arrived yet):

https://smile.amazon.com/iNINJA-TM-Extender-Lifeproof-lifetime/dp/B01FQMX0TO/ref=sr_1_1?s=pc&ie=UTF8&qid=1471231960&sr=1-1&keywords=iNINJA(TM)+Dock+Extender+Adapter+Male+to+Female+for+Lifeproof+iPhone+6,6s+plus,Iphone+5+5s+Ipad+4+Ipad+Mini+Ipad

I would assume there would be the same issue with Android and cases and the on-board phone charger.

- Plan how you will inspect your car. I had a finish problem that they were able to quickly fix.

- Have your HPWC installed. I am waiting for my electrician to install because I ordered late and it took them a long time to deliver it. I am charging on 30 amps and it is pedestrian. My builder will find out why the electrician only put a 30 amp fuse on my NEMA 14-50 outlet, but until it is fixed I can only charge at 30 amps not 40, let alone 72.

-The default for TESLA is for you to sign for (almost) everything, I live in an area where that is unnecessary, but I did not change my preferences with TESLA. I am not sure I would want my final registration paperwork subject to the crazy Texas weather. I had it delivered to a FEDEX office and picked it up on the way home. Very easy.

12) if you have Sirius/XM, be prepared for the colonoscopy of switching service to a new radio if you had service in your trade in. It took over an hour to get it done.

13) the day after delivery, your DS will (probably, Krystal did) send you links with helpful information and contact numbers.

Hope this helps!

J
 

bollar

Disgruntled Member
May 1, 2013
2,667
881
Southlake, TX
  • Helpful
Reactions: George Jetson

namlio

Member
Mar 3, 2016
110
101
Asheville, NC; previously TX
Actually, you can order the plates before you register the car, at least from MyPlates. All you need is the VIN and basic info. I ordered 2-3 weeks before delivery and the plates were waiting at the tax office. One thing to note is that the plates will be sent to the main tax office, not a satellite office. Make sure to confirm the delivery location when you order.

Watch for the look on the cashier's face when they see the sales tax amount. Mine almost choked. She didn't know what a Tesla was.
 

Jagwease

Member
Dec 12, 2014
60
44
New Braunfels, TX
Glad I could help. Service has not been a problem EXCEPT they drilled a hole in my front bumper when they reattached the front license plate bracket. I gave it a month for them to set up the bumper repair before calling them back, They forgot about it. If the body shop can't fix the bumper, they will put a new one on AND have it re-wrapped.
 
  • Like
Reactions: vrykolas

George Jetson

Member
Feb 23, 2013
303
209
The Future
I just got word that my plates arrived at the Harris Co. Tax Office, so I will be running the gauntlet this afternoon. I've never had to do this legwork myself before; its always handled by the dealer (for a fee). If you are not going to put just the generic TX plates on your car, I highly recommend ordering your specialty plates as soon as possible after Tesla sends you your VIN. You only have 30 days to pay the sales tax, fees, etc. to register and title your vehicle after the purchase date. Specialty plates can take 4-6 weeks for delivery. I ordered from MyPlates.com at the beginning of December and they just got here.

If your plates aren't ready yet, you will have to pay for and receive the generic plates and then come back yet again to exchange them. Either that or you will pay a delinquency fee for late registration after 30 days. Be ready to answer the question, "did you buy the vehicle in Texas?" The answer to that question is "no". You bought the vehicle in California and had it delivered in Texas.

I was lucky, when I took delivery of my MS60, they already had put the temporary paper plates on the car (and were kind enough to have laminated them for protection against the elements). This helped immensely to avoid an unnecessary encounter with the police (the CA tag-in-a-bag IS legal) and to smoothly register my car with HCTRA EZ-Tag. You can register an EZ-tag with the tag-in-a-bag number, but again if there's an issue, the toll cameras can't see it.

I'll report back if there's any unforeseen snags, but I'm about as prepared as I can be.
 
  • Helpful
Reactions: TexLaw and vrykolas

George Jetson

Member
Feb 23, 2013
303
209
The Future
I went to the Harris Co. Tax Office downtown (Houston) today on my way home from work. It was completely painless. As long as you have all of the requisite paperwork and are willing to fork over thousands of dollars in sales tax and fees, it only takes about 10 minutes and you are on your way. Personalized plates; check. Title (mailing to CU lienholder); check. Registration sticker; check. Registration receipt for next year's renewal; check. I am 100% good to go in Texas now.
 

George Jetson

Member
Feb 23, 2013
303
209
The Future
George Jetson, just out of curiosity, what do you have on your specialized plates? Welcome to the club. Maybe I will see you at one of the Houston events.
Plate.png
 

namlio

Member
Mar 3, 2016
110
101
Asheville, NC; previously TX
GJ - I kept thinking I had seen your plate before, but it wasn't on a Tesla. I just remembered what I had seen. It was on an ICE, maybe even a pickup, but it was WIND PWR, and actually had a picture of a wind turbine on the plate. Considering the amount of wind generation in Texas, but are fitting.
 
  • Like
Reactions: George Jetson

BerTX

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
May 2, 2014
3,505
3,647
Texas/Washington
GJ - I kept thinking I had seen your plate before, but it wasn't on a Tesla. I just remembered what I had seen. It was on an ICE, maybe even a pickup, but it was WIND PWR, and actually had a picture of a wind turbine on the plate. Considering the amount of wind generation in Texas, but are fitting.

Ok, so this is what came to my demented mind...

car-wind-up.jpg
 

George Jetson

Member
Feb 23, 2013
303
209
The Future
GJ - I kept thinking I had seen your plate before, but it wasn't on a Tesla. I just remembered what I had seen. It was on an ICE, maybe even a pickup, but it was WIND PWR, and actually had a picture of a wind turbine on the plate. Considering the amount of wind generation in Texas, but are fitting.
I am sure the people running Breeze Energy have plates with that theme on it too. My other thought was FRM2CAR, but maybe a bit too obtuse.
 

TexLaw

Member
Jan 29, 2017
484
445
Bellaire, TX
Has anyone moved personalized plates from an existing car to a new Tesla? I understand that, typically, one only can move personalized plates to a vehicle purchased from a dealer or through a private sale, but I didn't know if someone worked around that.

Frankly, I'm not all that concerned with the vanity plates, but I have 'em. I may as well keep 'em.
 

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