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Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws By State

Written by Bryan Johannsen

NEV State RegulationsThe vast majority of electric cars available today are Neighborhood Electric Vehicles. These are designated by the federal government as vehicles which are limited to a maximum speed of 25 miles per hour. Most states allow these on roads up to 35 miles per hour but it's up to each state on the specifics of operating an NEV.

 

Click on your state below to see the local NEV laws.

AK | AZ | CA | CO | DE | FL | GA | HI | IA | ID | IL | KS | LA | MD | ME
MI | MT | NV | NH | NJ | NY | NC | ND | OK | OR | RI | SC | SD | TN
TX | UT | VA | VT | WA | WI | WV

 

Federal Standard for Low Speed Vehicles

First, the Federal standard. The official term for these vehicles limited to 25 miles per hour is Low Speed Vehicle (LSV) but in the electric car world they are referred to as Neighborhood Electric Vehicles (NEV). The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration defines a LSV as a vehicle which:

  1. Has Four Wheels
  2. Can attain a speed in one mile on a paved, level surface of at least 20 miles per hour and not more than 25 miles per hour
  3. Has a gorss vehicle weight rating of less than 3000 pounds

Federal regulations require head lamps, brake lamps and tail lamps s well as front and rear turn signals. Also required are red reflectors on both sides and the rear of the vehicle, an exterior mirror on the driver's side and either an internal or external mirror on the passenger side, a parking brake, a windshield that meets federal standards, a vehicle identification number and seat belts at all seating positions.

Alaska Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • They may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Safety and weight use the federal standards
  • Local jurisdictions may impose their own restrictions

Arizona Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • They may cross higher speed limit roads only at designated intersections
  • There is no minimum speed but maximum speed is limited to 25 mph

California Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • They may cross higher speed roads only at controlled or specifically designated intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may restrict or prohibit use

Colorado Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • Local authorities determine which roads are accessible
  • Speed limited to 25 mph with no minimum speed
  • Local authorities can prohibit operation

Delaware Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • They may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Maximum weight must be under 2500 pounds

Florida Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • They may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may prohibit operation

Georgia Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • They may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph

Hawaii Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • They may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • Speed limited to 25 mph with no minimum speed
  • Maximum weight of 2500 pounds

Iowa Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • They may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph

Idaho Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour

Illinois Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads speed limited up to 35mph but must authorized by local authorities
  • May cross non highway roads at intersections
  • Crossing state highway only permitted at signal-controlled intersection or four-way stop signs if the speed limit on the highway is 35 mph or less
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Roads for travel must be individually authorized by local authorities

Kansas Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads speed limited to 40mph or less
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph

Louisiana Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph

Maryland Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads speed limited to 30 mph or less
  • NEVs may cross roads with speed limits of 45 mph or less at controlled intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use

Maine Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use
  • Maximum unloaded weight of 1800 pounds

Michigan Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 mph
  • Must ride as near to right side of road as practicable
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use

Montana Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • NEVs must be fully enclosed
  • NEVs must have a wheelbase longer than 40 inches
  • NEVs must have a wheel diameter 10 inches or larger
  • NEVs must be speed limited to 35 mph or less with no minimum speed

Nevada Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • NEVs must weight 1800 pounds or less
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph

New Hampshire Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph

New Mexico Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use

New Jersey Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 25 miles per hour
  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour as designated by local authorities
  • NEVs may cross roads with speed limits up to 35 mph
  • NEVs may cross roads with higher speed limits if designated by local authorities
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use

New York Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use
  • Weight must be under 3000 pounds

North Carolina Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use

North Dakota Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use
  • Weight must be under 3000 pounds

Oklahoma Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use

Oregon Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use

Rhode Island Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 25 miles per hour only on Prudence Island between 6AM and 6PM
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • Speed limited to 35 mph with no minimum speed
  • Maximum capacity of 4 persons

South Carolina Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • May only travel on secondary roads
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use

South Dakota Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use
  • No golf carts or homemade vehicles

Tennessee Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use
  • No golf carts

Texas Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use

Utah Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • Maximum capacity of 4 persons
  • No golf carts
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use

Virginia Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use

Vermont Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • NEVs may cross roads of a 50 mph or less speed limit at intersections
  • They must be speed limited to 25 mph, no minimum speed
  • Maximum capacity of 4 persons
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use

Washington Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • If equipped with a roll cage or crush proof body speed may be up to 35 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use

Wisconson Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 miles per hour if approved by local authorities
  • NEVs may cross roads of a higher speed limit at intersections
  • They must be able to maintain at least 20mph and be limited to 25 mph
  • Local jurisdictions may limit or prohibit use
  • Maximum weight of 3000 pounds

West Virginia Neighborhood Electric Vehicle Laws

  • NEVs may travel on roads with speed limits up to 25 mph
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