Derek Eddlestone wrote:I may be missing something in this argument but if your mil vehicle is as roadworthy as the vehicle next to you at the lights, you're both on the road by right having paid the same insurances and taxes on your gasoline.
You've missed the entire point but don't feel bad, Dirk, some from America's heartland are just as clueless:
GIJoel wrote:Equal protection under the law is a right however. Smells like someone up there just doesn't like OD, or took too broad an interpretation of the special classification for HMMWVs sold to the public.
"Roadworthiness" has nothing to do with a subjective detemination by some DMV wonk as to whether or not your vehicle is safe or has seat belts or whether it can even keep up with traffic. In DMV parlance, "roadworthy" is a term of art with a specific, narrow meaning, not it's meaning in common usage.
Roadworthiness doesn't turn on whether your vehicle stops on a dime, takes two city blocks to stop or whether you drag your feet to stop it like Fred Flintstone. Rather, roadworthiness is predicated on whether your vehicle was built to the applicable Federal Department of Transportation (DOT) specs for its Year of Manufacture (YOM), nothing more, nothing less.
If your vehicle was built before DOT requirements went into effect (1/1/1970, IIRC) it's roadworthy no matter how many safety features it's missing. If it was built and certified to DOT specs for it's YOM, it's still roadworthy no matter how much more stringent the regs have become since then.
There are many, many horribly unsafe vehicles that are "roadworthy" to the DMV while many safer, more modern vehicles including supercars like the Porsche 959 are not. Not only can you be at a red light, stopped right next to a car that is as safe as yours but not roadworthy but you could be driving an absolute road hazard
while the guy in the 959 can be prosecuted, jailed, fined and have his vehicle confiscated and exported for driving an amazing, imillion dollar supercar. You can also be in what appear to be identical vehicles while your US version is roadworthy and it's "gray market" twin is not. Most often the gray market car is actually a "better" car, usually lighter and more powerful with ABS brakes and better head and tail lights but the gray market import's more powerful engine hasn't been certified for US emissions, it may not have side impact door beams. Manufacturers were afraid to equip US cars with early ABS systems for fear of Americans tendency to sue everyone for everything. Some of the differences are as minor as different colored tail light lenses.
So, fact is, despite the fact that there's every chance in the world that, while driving your MB, you'll end up in the trunk of some high school chick's Honda with ABS brakes, the MB's "roadworthy" because it predates DOT regs while much better, much safer, much more modern vehicles are not.
P.S. Buying gas and paying Highway Use Tax (HUT) have nothing to do with vesting you with any right to actually use that vehicle on the road. You can buy gas for your lawn mower but it doesn't mean you can drive it to Church.