The Nissan Skyline R34 GT-R is one of the most famous and desired Japanese cars in America. This leads to many car enthusiasts asking "Is the R34 legal in the States?" The bottom line is that it is legal to own an R34 in America. However, it is very difficult to get your hands on one. This is because it was illegal for R34s to be imported into the country when they were originally being manufactured. The R34 did not meet the government regulations that all imported cars are required to meet.
A small number of R34s were imported into the country by a company called MotoRex after the original production run had ended. The supposed legal loophole that the company exploited was dubious, and the company ended up getting shut down by the government. However, the customers who had purchased the MotoRex R34s were allowed to keep them.
The only completely legal way that an R34 can be imported into the United States is if it is a "Show and Display" car. These regulations are intended to cover cars that are in a museum or a private collection. However, only a few models of the R34 have been approved for import under these regulations.
If you have your heart set on owning and driving an R34 in America, you should prepare yourself to spend a lot of time and money chasing this car. However, it is possible if you are persistent. There are two sources of R34s in America: The MotoRex cars and Show and Display cars. You can also pay to have a car imported from Japan, but this will be even more difficult and time-consuming to pull off.
Both the MotoRex R34s and the Show and Display R34s come up to auction on occasion. If you pay attention to high-end automotive auctions like Hagerty's, you will eventually see one listed. These cars usually sell for $250,000 to $350,000, with the car's model and condition (as well as buyer demand) determining the actual selling price.
If you have actually managed to purchase your own R34, you still have many regulations to follow. It may also be difficult to get the vehicle ensured. If you purchase one of the Show and Display cars, you are allowed to drive it on the road. However, you are only allowed to put 2,500 miles per year on the odometer.