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Final Word Laid Down On Golf Cart Controversy

Last updated on Friday, August 29, 2008

(UNDATED) - Here’s the final answer you golf carters have been waiting for.

Earlier, the Indiana State Police sent out a press release saying that golf carts could only be registered with the BMV if they meet safety regulations, but that none currently do.

However, that left the door open to possibly being able to modify a golf cart with safety equipment that meets regulations.

Well, if you own a golf cart and want to drive it on the road, cover your eyes, you don't want to read this. It's not possible for an individual to modify a golf cart to meet dot standards, only a manufacturer can do that.

BMV Communications Director Dennis Rosebrough tells WBIW News that you can't just sew on a couple seat belts and duct tape some signal lights on a golf cart and get a plate.

We here at WBIW News know our previous report left that in the air, and that's because we were confused on it as well.

But, no, you can't do it, and we apologize for the confusion.

However, all is not lost!

There are companies that make, essentially, street legal golf carts out there, although, technically, they're small, electric cars.

Global Electric Motorcars, more commonly known as GEM Car, a division of Chrysler LLC, sells small, electric vehicles that closely resemble golf carts, however, they are low-speed or "neighborhood electric" vehicles that are street legal in almost all states on roads with speed limits less than 35. GEM Car's top speeds are at 25mph.

GEM Car has a dealership in Haubstadt, Indiana, just north of Evansville.

ZAP! manufactures the Xebra line of electric vehicles, though appear to be on a much smaller scale than GEM. The same issues apply, also, to it being a low-speed vehicle.

However, if "low-speed" is not your style, well, there's always the Tesla Roadster, a $100,000 all-electric speedster capable of going about 220 miles on one charge, 0-60mph in 3.9sec, and making you look 10 years younger. However, if gas is your main concern around town, return on investment will take quite a while.

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