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Buying a New Car in North Carolina

Benjamin Hunting
by Benjamin Hunting
October 3, 2009

North Carolina is a state which has undergone a period of rapid expansion and modernization, seeing it explode in terms of the financial and information technology companies which have chosen to do business there. A strong history of motorsports in the state also means that it provides fertile hunting ground for anyone seeking to buy a brand new car. This article is meant to help you not only find which parts of the state offer the best range of new car choices, but also provide you with a framework for navigating the registration, titling and vehicle fees process in North Carolina.

North Carolina is not a very large state, but it is blessed with several sizable metropolitan areas, which means that new car shoppers are well served in terms of variety. Charlotte, Greensboro and Raleigh all offer an excellent selection when it comes to new car and truck dealerships, but there are also several smaller towns that are worth mentioning such as Wilmington, Fayetteville and Goldsboro. Whether inland or coastal, all regions of North Carolina are only a short drive away from golden car shopping opportunities.

When heading to the North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles, you will need to make sure to bring along enough cash to cover the various fees you are responsible for paying. A certificate of title will cost you $40.00, and license plates for a passenger vehicle or truck under 4,000 lbs will set you back $28.00. A truck that weighs less than 5,000 lbs costs $43.50 to register, while one that is 6,000 lbs or less runs $51.60 in registration fees. If you are transferring your plate from an old vehicle to your new one, an additional $15.00 fee is applied. Those who reside in Wake, Durham or Orange counties will also have to pay a $5.00 Regional Transportation Authority Registration Tax.

North Carolina's state sales tax doesn't apply to new vehicle purchases. Instead, a 3 percent Highway Use Tax is collected upon the initial registration of the vehicle. The tax is calculated based on the purchase price of the vehicle in question.


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