An excise at the rate of $25 per one thousand dollars of valuation (effective January 1, 1981) is levied on each motor vehicle. Information on the value of a motor vehicle is accessed electronically by the Registry of Motor Vehicles though a data bank complete with valuation figures.
Valuation figures are the manufacturers' list prices for vehicles in their year of manufacture. Present market value, price paid, or condition are not considered for excise tax purposes. The excise tax law establishes its own formula for valuation for state tax purposes whereby only the manufacturer's list price and the age of the motor vehicle are considered. The formula is as follows:
- In the year preceding the model year (brand new car released before model year): 50%
- In the model year: 90%
- In the second year: 60%
- In the third year: 40%
- In the fourth year: 25%
- In the fifth and succeeding years: 10%
Every motor vehicle owner must pay an excise tax based on a valuation of at least ten % of the manufacture's list price; thus, owners of vehicles older than five years should have a fixed excise tax bill for succeeding years of ownership. No excise shall be less than $5.