RTO registration and its process

The Regional Transport Office (RTO) is responsible for registering and keeping track of every vehicle that runs on the roads of India. Each state has its own RTO that offers citizens a wide range of services related to their vehicles. One of the most important services offered by the RTOs is vehicle registration. You need to register your vehicle with the respective RTO of your state after buying it. Here, you can check the vehicle registration process with RTO in India in detail.

General Vehicle Registration Process in India

After buying a vehicle, it is mandatory to register it with the RTO of your state. The registration process involves two steps.

  • Temporary RTO Registration Number in India: You are issued a temporary number after buying a vehicle. This number is given by the seller or dealer which indicates that your vehicle is not permanent yet. The number is valid only for a short time, and within this period, it is necessary to get a permanent registration number. 
  • Permanent Vehicle Registration Number in India: Once a new vehicle is registered with the Ministry of Road Transport & Highways through a local RTO, you will be issued a permanent registration number. You cannot change it under any circumstances. If you move from one state to another, you will have to re-register it.

The process to register your new vehicle at RTO

You can register your vehicle through two modes i.e. self or dealer. If you are choosing to register your vehicle by yourself. Then, you need to follow the below-mentioned steps.

Step 1: Visit the local RTO office with your new vehicle.

Step 2: Fill the Application Form 20 and submit it along with the required documents.

Step 3: After that, the documents will be inspected by the RTO superintendent.

Step 4: Pay the required registration fee with the tax at the cash counter.

Step 5: Your vehicle will be inspected by the Inspector of Motor Vehicle.

Step 6: The RTO office will enter the vehicle data into the central database.

Step 7: The RTO Superintendent will verify the vehicle data entered in the database.

Step 8: The Assistant Regional Transport Officer (ARTO) will approve the registration.

Step 9: The RTO office will initiate the process for the Smart Card and once it is printed, it will be delivered to the applicant by post to the registered mailing address.

Documents required for new vehicle registration

  • Application form CMV20
  • Sale Certificate of the vehicle
  • Active insurance certificate
  • Valid address proof
  • Temporary registration issued by the dealer
  • Registration fee
  • A copy of your PAN

How to check your vehicle registration details online?

You can easily check your vehicle registration through the Central Government's web portal, VAHAN, which acts as a central database of motor vehicles plying on Indian roads. All you need to do is send an SMS to Vahan to check the RTO details. Please send an SMS in the format-VAHAN{SPACE}VEHICLE NUMBER to 77382 99899 and you will get a reply in around 5 minutes. You will get the following information in the SMS:

  • Owner name
  • RTO office where the vehicle was registered
  • Fitness certificate expiry date
  • Ownership serial number (If it is the first owner, second owner, or third owner)

You can also visit the Vahan official website at https://parivahan.gov.in/vahanservice/vahan/ui/statevalidation/homepage.xhtml and enter the vehicle number and click on the submit button to get all the information about your vehicle.

What are the different Vehicle Registration Forms?

It is not just important that you understand only the process of registering your vehicle at RTO. But it is also important for you to understand and learn about the different vehicle registration forms which are available at the Vahan website. 

  • Form 20- Application for registration of a motor vehicle
  • Form 21- Sale certificate
  • Form 23- Certificate of registration
  • Form 24- Registration of motor vehicle
  • Form 29- Notice of transfer of ownership of a motor vehicle
  • Form 38 A- Report of inspection
  • Form 50- Bill of lading
  • Form 51- Certificate of insurance
  • Form 54- Accident information report
  • Form 57- Certificate for foreign insurance

Please download the concerned RTO form and accurately fill it before you visit the RTO to save some time.

Fees for RTO Vehicle registration in India

Purpose Fees
Motorcycles/Two-Wheeler (Bikes)

Rs. 300

Non-Transport: Rs. 600

Cars/Light Motor Vehicles (LMVs)/Four-Wheeler

Transport: Rs. 1,000

Non-Transport: Rs. 600

Three-Wheeler (Auto Rickshaw)

Transport: Rs. 1,000

Non-Transport: Rs. 600

Transport: Rs. 1,000
Medium Goods Motor Vehicle (Commercial)
Rs. 1,000
Medium Passenger Motor Vehicle
Rs. 1,000
Heavy goods motor vehicleRs. 1,500
Heavy Passenger Motor Vehicle
Rs. 1,500
Imported Motor Vehicle (Cars)
Rs. 5,000
Imported Motorcycles (Bikes)
Rs 2500
Others (Not Mentioned on the List)
Rs. 3,000
Issue of Smart Card
Rs. 200
Issue of Duplicate Certificate of Registration
50% of new vehicle registration charges