Car & Road Tax in Spain: IVTM Explained SIMPLY…

It isn’t just car insurance in Spain that is compulsory – there is also the motor vehicle tax, or road tax, which is obligatory.

Road tax, known in Spanish as Impuesto Sobre Vehículos de Tracción Mecánica or IVTM for short is the annual tax payable on motor vehicles registered in Spain.

If you own a vehicle in Spain such as a car or motorbike then you must obtain compulsory road tax.

Although you will often hear the IVTM referred to as car tax in Spain, it does also apply to every type of motor vehicle such as caravans, scooters, vans, motorbikes and motorcycles.

Failure to do so can result in your vehicle being impounded by the police in Spain.

How Much Does Spanish Road Tax Cost?

So how much is road tax in Spain? Pricing depends on the vehicle, it’s fuel type and the municipality in which it is registered. Each region in Spain has the freedom to set it’s own prices. There are usually discounts available for persons with disabilities.

Road tax in Spain is much lower than other countries such as the United Kingdom. We are based in Javea on the Costa Blanca (Valencia region of Spain) and we pay IVTM of €92 a year for our four-year-old Citroen Picasso.

When is Spanish Road Tax Due?

The person liable for payment of the motor vehicle tax is the registered owner of the vehicle on the 1st of January.

The payment period for Impuesto Sobre Vehículos de Tracción Mecánica (IVTM) is usually anytime between the beginning of March and the beginning of May but this can vary from region to region in Spain.

Payment is generally due approximately at the end of each April. Even if you don’t meet this date then the fine (when you do pay) is very small – we were once three months late and I think paid an extra 10 euros.

Where Do I Go To Pay?

Get a QuoteYou can pay your road tax (Impuesto Sobre Vehículos de Tracción Mecánica) at your local town hall office (known in Spain as Ayuntamiento) or you can get a bank direct debit up so you don’t have to think about it each year.

The only problem that could happen here is that if you sell your car you could end up paying the road tax until the debit is cancelled, it might be a hassle that’s all.

You are normally send a notice as a reminder but even if you don’t receive this then just go into your town hall and they will have your vehicle details anyway and will tell you how much to pay (they give you a slip which you take to a local bank to pay).

Payment can be made by direct debit or over the counter in any branch of certain designated banks.

My Vehicle is Off The Road – Is It Exempt From IVTM Road Tax?

The only way of not paying the road tax in Spain is if your vehicle if off the road for the whole year – in this case you can get an exemption which is known as a baja temporal.

If you re-register your UK registered car onto Spanish license plates then the car will automatically be logged by the local municipality when you or your gestor registers your ownership with the provincial traffic department.

You will then need to pay the road tax due for the rest of the fiscal year.

Page Summary

If you own a vehicle registered in Spain be it a car or other type of motor vehicle used on the roads, then you are liable to pay an annual road tax.

In Spain this is called Impuesto Sobre Vehículos de Tracción Mecánica (IVTM).

Related Insurance Pages

Insurance for Spain Index

Car Insurance – Get a Quote


  1. len fryers says

    Hi can anyone tell me the correct road tax for an electric car in murcia

  2. Stuart Williams says

    My wife has 35 percent disability so does not have to pay car tax. Today the council took the tax out of the bank, she got it back but what do we do/where do to go to sort it out please?

  3. david harris says

    I have sold my Scooter to a Dealer, How do I cancel the IVTM?

  4. How do i pay my car road tax on line and change the town hall to my local one

  5. Judy Bornemann says

    I purchased. LHD car in Ireland which I want to register in Spain – our place is on the Costa Blanca. My son is doing a masters in Valencia so he drove the car there a few weeks ago. On Saturday the police towed the car away as the (Irish) road tax had expired. I was flabbergasted, he then had to pay the Irish road tax,plus 250€ to the police and €150 to the pound to have the car released, Why is the Irish road tax of interest to the Spanish Police???

  6. Peter Clarke says

    Can anybody help?
    I purchased a Spanish registered car in December 2019 and will be importing it into Portugal this year probably after I have owned it for 6 months. I believe I need circulation Tax, we all it Road Tax. The caris registered at an address in Madrid.
    I have found a web site that calculates the fee 59 Euros
    Is there a wayI can pay this without physically visiting the Municipal offices in Madrid. Any clues to an online option for my region Madrid? Thanks and Regards Peter

  7. I sold my Spanish plated car (that i’d bought second hand from a garage in a SPAIN) back to the same garage in March of this year.
    Do I still have to pay the road tax for that vehicle for this year please??

  8. How do you check if previous owner has paid road tax to date. There is no receipt.

  9. Annette Gregson says

    My son bought a car in murcia region of Spain we are going through the process of changing the name in the meantime the suma is due we live in it alicence region we are trying to tax the car everyone we speak to says the last owner should tax it as he had the car on January the 1st the last owner has moved back to the UK and does not want to know what can we do

  10. kevin gray says

    I am in the uk at present and my car is in my garage in Tenerife. Can I pay my IVTM on line or do I have to travel to Tenerife to pat this.I cancelled my Bank Account so also my standing order for to pay this.My insurance and ITV are active its only the car tax that I need to pay. Any way to do this rather to fork out 200 quid and a hotel.

  11. If I have a 40 year old triumph stag on an English plate what do I have to do to matriculate it?

  12. John Ashwell says

    I have a rather unexpected bill on my hands – I bought a car in Spain back in 2007 and when I returned to the UK in 2010 I drove back with the car and then had it imported onto British plates. At the time I did not think any more about the car being registered in Spain and I expected that this import process automatically deregistered the car in Spain given we are all part of the EU. Now 7 years after the car was imported and taxed in the UK, I was on holiday in Spain and went into the local town hall to find out what our property and rubbish taxes were as they needed being brought up to date. In addition to this I was presented with a bill for 1500 Euros in back dated car tax! We receive no post at our property as it is extremely rural and no one is living there, but the car was originally registered against that address. I took the paperwork and proof that the car was in the UK and taxed over here since 2010 to a local Gestor, but was told that because we did not tell the authorities the car was leaving Spain we have to pay these taxes and they will continue charging for them until the car is deregistered over there whether or not the car is on British plates in the UK. Any thoughts? It seems ridiculous that within the EU a car is being taxed in two countries at once, but no idea how to challenge this. I am being told that ignorance of the law is no excuse.

    • Sorry to hear about this but I can understand how it happens. The Spanish are a law unto themselves. I registered a car in Spain 3 years ago. (Still on the road there) I brought it from my home in Ireland. I cannot de register the car in Ireland as per EU procedure (according to the Irish authorities) The new country (Spain in this case) is supposed to communicate with the country of origin. The Spanish have not done this and although I have been in touch with the Irish authorities I keep getting an annual request from them for road tax. I have to make a formal declaration to them each that the car is off the road (in Ireland) to avoid any payment. So in effect my car is registered in 2 countries! I have spoken with my Gastor in Spain who tells me the Spanish would not communicate with countires of origin. They will just register your car in Spain and take the import duty. Thats all they are interested in. If you do not follow their rules, then its another matter completely.

    • Coconut Joe says

      Spanish bureaucracy is an utter nightmare.
      Talk about making simple things difficult!

      Good luck, but me thinks you’re in for a tiresome monotonous trek thru Spanish bureaucracy.
      Get a Gestor to sort it for you or back street lawyer, they’re cheep and will save you a lot of hassle and time. I never go anywhere near Spanish bureaucracy, get someone professional to do it.

  13. keith newton says

    Did you notify your the town hall you have purchased the car
    You can pay in you local area as long as the car is registered in that area.
    Each local government area has there own level of road tax it’s not the same across the nation so Murcia region is different to,valencia community you have to let you local off know that you have transfered the car in they will give you a new invoice so you can pay.
    Take all your documents to the town hall you will need a stamp nif or nie and register your car in your area you will need your ITV the various different coloured paper of the log book it simple they will then raise a new invoice each region have different times of the year to pay if you are cost to the region you bought it from then nip,to the nearest town and pay if not take a ticket at the town hall and someone will help

  14. keith newton says

    You cannot pay until you get you letter then you have over a month to pay it but do not worry to much most Spanish are late paying there road tax it our town hall charge €10 per year for a late payment. You have have all the documents the previous owner should have paid the road tax to the end of the year.
    Longs as you got your insurance ITV and the red book blue and green papers you will be OK

  15. We have tried to pay and told we must pay in the area the car was purchased ,how do we get around this

  16. Keith Newton says

    Are there any discounts for disabled drivers? In the UK disabled drivers pay zero road tax is there a similar system in Spain and what do you need to do?

  17. Rosemary says

    I have purchased a Spanish registered vehicle in the uk which I propose to drive to Spain. My home is in costa blanca will I be likely to get a fine by driving from santander without the car tax. Do you have any advise about how I can get around this?

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