California tightens smog rules for off-road vehicles

Dirt bikes and other off-road vehicles sold in California will have to meet tough new anti-smog requirements beginning with 2018 models.

U-T San Diego ( ) says the state Air Resources Board approved rules Thursday that could reduce fumes seeping from gas tanks and fuel lines by 70 percent -- but also could add hundreds of dollars to the price of new models.

Gases such as cancer-causing benzene, are emitted from off-road vehicles even when they're in the garage. The new regulations would limit them to 1 gram a day instead of the estimated 10 to 15 grams they otherwise would release.

Manufacturers are expected to need design changes to meet the cap -- and that's expected to raise prices.

The regulations will exempt snowmobiles, gas-fueled golf carts and go-karts.

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