The States that Allow Street-Legal UTVs
22 states allow people to make their UTVs street-legal and drive them on public roads. The UTV street legal states are:
- New Hampshire
- North Dakota
- South Dakota
Support for street-legal UTVs is growing across the nation, so more states will likely join this list in the near future. Even in states that allow UTVs to be driven on public roads, these vehicles are subject to the same safety requirements as cars. This means they must be modified to be street-legal.
What a UTV Needs to be Street-Legal
While the equipment needed to make a UTV street-legal varies slightly from state to state, most states have similar regulations. Street-legal UTVs are universally required to have brake lights, turn signals, headlights, and hazard lights. Some states require additional equipment before they deem a UTV to be street-legal.
Arizona requires that UTVs operated on public roads have a rearview mirror and a horn that can be heard at least 250 feet away. Tennessee requires that UTVs have a red triangle sign (like that used on tractors) and tires approved by the Department of Transportation. Texas, Wyoming, and Utah require that UTVs have a plate with a lit license plate bracket.
While UTVs can be made street-legal in Michigan, the process is quite expensive. This is because Michigan requires UTVs to have a full glass windshield, a windshield wiper, and a windshield washer.
Regulations Covering UTV Operation on Public Roads
Just as each state has different regulations for the equipment that street-legal UTVs must have, each state also has varying regulations for how these vehicles can be operated on public roads. Most states only allow UTVs to be operated on county roads. UTVs are not allowed on interstate highways. Nevada, Washington, and several other states restrict UTVs to a speed of 45 miles per hour or less. Tennessee only allows UTVs to go 35 miles per hour. Many modern UTVs can go far faster, so operators will have to watch their speed to avoid speeding tickets.
A few states, such as New Hampshire, allow non-street legal UTVs to use public roads when the roads are impassable for normal cars. In New Hampshire, UTVs operating in this situation must have four-way flashers like snow plows.