what is a low speed vehicle?-Electric Golf Car Company Sacramento

Electric Golf Cart vs Low Speed Vehicle

Low Speed Vehicle | Electric Golf Car Company

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A GOLF CART AND A LOW SPEED VEHICLE?

There is a lot of terminology confusion when it comes to golf cars, golf carts, and low speed vehicles. We addressed the classic golf CAR vs golf CART debate RIGHT HERE, so be sure to check it out.golf cart vs golf car-electric golf car company

Today we are going to talk about another category: Low Speed Vehicles (LSV). With golf cars and LSV’s becoming so popular, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has had to include new definitions and rules. Let’s examine the legal differences between a golf cart and a LSV.

WHAT MAKES IT A LOW SPEED VEHICLE?

Here is the book definition of a LSV, courtesy the NHTSA:

“a 4-wheeled motor vehicle, other than a truck, whose speed attainable in 1.6 km (1 mile) is more than 32 kilometers per hour (20 miles per hour) and not more than 40 kilometers per hour (25 miles per hour) on a paved level surface.”

In other words, a low speed vehicle is described as a vehicle that:

  1.  has 4 wheels,
  2.  can go at least 20 MPH but not faster than 25 MPH,
  3.  a GVWR (total weight with passengers/cargo) not to exceed 3,000 LBS

The maximum speed allowed may differ depending on your state, but in California 25 MPH is the limit. Additionally, in California, a low speed vehicle requires a valid driver’s license, registration, and insurance.

California specific guidelines for low speed vehicles:

  • maximum speed of 25 MPH on level, paved surface
  • cannot be driven on a road with a posted speed limit of 35 MPH or greater
  • requires a driver’s license
  • must be registered with the DMV
  • must have insurance

Low speed vehicles are typically electric, with a range of only about 30 miles. Additionally, compared to a golf car or golf cart, a LSV must have certain safety features, such as:

  • headlights and brake lights
  • seat belts
  • rear view mirror
  • turn signals

SOMETIMES THE DEFINITION DOES MATTER

As you can see, there are some pretty specific guidelines for low speed vehicles that make them quite different than golf cars and golf carts. It is really important to understand that modifying your low speed vehicle, or your golf car, could change the requirements for safety features and registration here in California. Be sure to understand your local laws and definitions if you own a low speed vehicle or golf car.

To learn more keep checking back with Electric Golf Car Company’s Golf Car Guru! And follow us on social media for all the latest news, articles, and available golf cars!

Low Speed Vehicle | Electric Golf Car Company

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