EPA Moving to Make Race Car Conversions Illegal. Or are they?

Last year in July, the EPA drafted a rather lengthy proposal titled, “Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Fuel Efficiency Standards for Medium- and Heavy-Duty Engines and Vehicles – Phase 2.” The Specialty Equipment Manufacturer’s Association (SEMA) has been hard at work reading through the full 629 page document to get a clear understanding of what the EPA is trying to do.

SEMA claims that the EPA wants to make it illegal to convert road-going cars into race cars.

Hidden inside the EPA proposal, is a section that states tampering with the emission controls on a certified vehicle for purposes of competition would be illegal, and the sale of emissions-related parts would also be illegal. These kinds of modifications for race cars are already legal under the current Clean Air Act, but the EPA’s bill would change that. SEMA went on to say that they “will continue to oppose the regulation through the administrative process and will seek congressional support and judicial intervention as necessary.”


All of that sounds very concerning. We certainly don’t want to lose our freedom to modify our rides for maximum racing performance, so it’s okay to be concerned. But some outlets are a bit skeptical of SEMA’s outcries. Road and Track says that it is already illegal to modify the emission control systems on street vehicles. They go on to say the EPA is simply attempting to clarify the law that everyone should already be following.

So it just makes us wonder what actually is going on. Are race cars going to be outlawed like some people are saying? Is SEMA causing such an uproar to pressure the EPA against doing such a thing? We’ll know for sure when the EPA’s proposal is published in July of this year.

What are your opinions on this debacle? Do you think this is an example of government overreach?

One thought on “EPA Moving to Make Race Car Conversions Illegal. Or are they?

  1. Good headline, poor question (“Do you think this is an example government overreach?”). Based on the information in the article, an equally valid question might be “is this an example of SEMA overreach?”. Pure speculation either way without more information.


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