Car Sales Tax in Maine

Car shoppers in Maine can expect to pay exactly 5.5% in sales tax.
Written by Jacqulyn Graber
Reviewed by Jessica Barrett
If you’re car shopping in Maine, you can expect to pay exactly 5.5% in sales tax. The state imposes this tax on all new and used purchases, making it easy to estimate your total purchase price. 
When looking to purchase a vehicle, you’ll have lots of costs to consider. In addition to the advertised ticket price, you’ll pay additional fees and sales tax. No matter where you shop in Maine, you’ll pay the same tax rate—city and county governments do not impose their own taxes. 
car insurance
knows how important it is to build a budget before car shopping, which is why we’ve created this handy sales tax guide for prospective buyers in Maine. Read on so you can accurately estimate your payments then learn how to find cheap
car insurance in Maine
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How much is the car sales tax rate in Maine?

Some states have varying sales tax depending on the city you live in. Fortunately for Maine residents, the Pine Tree State charges a standard 5.5%. There are no additional taxes imposed by cities or counties.

How are car trade-ins taxed in Maine? 

To lower the overall purchase price of your new vehicle, you may decide to trade in your old car. When you
trade in a car
, the dealership will estimate your trade-ins value and offer you a credit. That credit will be deducted from the total purchase price of your new set of wheels. 
In the state of Maine, the sales tax will only be applied to the net price of your new car after the trade-in credit is deducted. In other words, your trade-in’s value is not subject to taxes! Depending on the value of your trade-in vehicle, this could save you a considerable amount of money.
MORE: Trade-in vs private sale: What’s the best way to sell your car?

How to calculate sales tax on a car in Maine

Calculating what you’ll pay in sales tax on a car in Maine is quite easy—simply add 5.5% of your car’s sticker price. If you want to make sure your calculations are accurate, you can
use this handy tool. 
Key Takeaway No matter where you shop in Maine, you’ll pay 5.5% in taxes when purchasing a new or used vehicle. 
MORE: Maine electric vehicle incentives

Exemptions from Maine car sales tax

The following may be exempt from paying car sales tax in Maine:
  • Motor vehicles owned by the State, or by any counties, municipalities, or political subdivisions of the state
  • Motor vehicles registered for in driver education (either by public or private secondary schools)
  • Motor vehicles owned by volunteer fire departments 
  • Motor vehicles owned and registered by dealers or manufacturers, and used solely for demonstration and sale
  • Motor vehicles to be lawfully operated on transporter registration certificates
  • Motor vehicles owned by railroad companies that already pay taxes to the State
  • Motor vehicles used by benevolent and charitable organizations 
  • Motor vehicles used by literary and scientific institutions
  • Motor vehicles used by religious societies
  • Motor vehicles that are specially adapted and owned by blind or paraplegic veterans
  • Motor vehicles owned by non-residents of Maine 
  • Motor vehicles traveling in Maine only in interstate commerce that are owned in a U.S. state where taxes have been paid on the vehicle and that exempts Maine-owned vehicles as well
  • Busses used for the transportation of passengers for hire in interstate or intrastate commerce
  • Adaptive equipment installed on a motor vehicle owned by a disabled person or their family to make the vehicle accessible or operable to the disabled person
  • Active military members stationed in Maine
  • Active military members stationed outside of Maine
  • Water well-drilling equipment attached to a motor vehicle used for business purposes 
MORE: Selling a car in Maine

How to estimate Maine tax, title, and registration fees

Once you’ve figured out what you’ll owe in sales tax on your new vehicle, you’ll then have to add the additional applicable fees.
The following chart can help you estimate all of the taxes and fees you’ll pay when car shopping in Maine:
Estimated cost
Sales tax
Registration fee
Title fee
Plate transfer
Documentation fee
Average is $410, but not state-regulated—dealerships must post their documentation fees for viewing
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How to find affordable car insurance in Maine

Basic liability insurance is legally required, according to
Maine's car insurance laws
—so before you drive off the lot, you’ll have to shop for car insurance policies.
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can help you secure your new
car insurance
policy in a matter of minutes. Simply download the app, answer a few easy questions, and you’ll be presented with a list of customized quotes from brand-name insurance providers. 
Once you scroll through your options and pick a policy, Jerry will complete all the paperwork and help you cancel your old policy. Even better, you’ll never have to pick up the phone or deal with pushy salespeople!


Maine taxes new and used cars the same—a flat sales tax of 5.5% statewide, with no additional local taxes added.
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