What is a CMV? CMV means a commercial motor vehicle, and a CMV is a type of vehicle that is used for transporting freight or passengers for compensation and crossing state lines. A CMV isn’t just a big rig. A variety of vehicles could be a CMV, continue reading to find out what they are.
Basically, a CMV is a vehicle that is used for interstate business (freight or passengers) along highways with these specifications:
• The CMV weighs 10,001 or more pounds.
• The vehicle has a GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) and/or GCWR (Gross Combination Weight Rating) of 10,001 or more pounds.
• The vehicle is intended to transport 15 people or more along with the driver, but not for revenue.
• The vehicle is intended to transport 8 people or more along with the driver for revenue.
• The vehicle will be transporting any hazardous materials that will need placards.
(source: FMCSA Section § 390.5)
Types of Commercial Motor Vehicles
In the United States, there are eight different classes of CMV’s, and the eight classes are then split into three groups, which include light-duty, medium-duty, and heavy-duty.
Light-Duty Commercial Vehicles (no CDL required)
The light-duty group would include commercial trucks that are classified one, two, and three. Note: no CDL is required for these vehicles.
• Class One – Class One truck has a gross vehicle weight rating from 1 – 6,000 pounds.
• Class Two – Class Two truck has a gross vehicle weight rating from 6,001 – 10,000 pounds.
• Class Three – Class Three truck as a gross vehicle weight rating from 10,001 – 14,000 pounds.
Medium-Duty Commercial Vehicles (no CDL required)
The light-duty group would include commercial trucks that are classified four, five, and six. Note: no CDL is required for these vehicles
• Class Four – Class Four truck has a gross vehicle weight rating from 14,001 – 16,000 pounds.
• Class Five – Class Five truck has a gross vehicle weight rating from 16,001 – 19,500 pounds.
• Class Six – Class Six truck has a gross vehicle weight rating from 19,501 – 26,000 pounds.
Note: drivers of these six classes do not need a CDL because the GVWR of the vehicles is less than 26,000 lbs.
Heavy-Duty Commercial Vehicles (CDL required)
The heavy-duty group would include commercial trucks that are classified seven and eight. Note: A Class A or B commercial driver’s license is required to drive the heavy-duty classified groups. The most common example of one of these vehicles is the tractor trailer.
• Class Seven – Class Seven truck has a gross vehicle weight rating from 26,001 – 33,000 pounds.
• Class Eight – Class Eight truck has a gross vehicle weight rating that is over 33,001 pounds.
Any vehicle that has a gross vehicle weight of 10,001 or more pounds and the vehicle is being used for a business or it is being used for nonprofit, then that vehicle must follow the federal and state regulations.
This means that even though a CDL is not required the driver will still have to complete a DOT medical exam.
These vehicles must stop at any weigh stations, and the driver of the vehicle is required to follow the hours of service and have medical examinations too.
Class One thru Class Six vehicles doesn’t require the driver to have a commercial driver’s license, but if the gross vehicle weight rating is more than 10,001 pounds it will need to have the USDOT number and company name on the vehicle.
I know that it is a little complicated by play it safe by contacting the U.S. Department of Transportation.
What is a CMV Driver?
A CMV driver is a driver that has a commercial driver’s license (CDL).
A person that is driving a commercial motor vehicle has to have the knowledge and skills to operate it.
The three CDL license classes are the Class A, Class B, and Class C.
If you are driving any farm equipment within one hundred and fifty miles from the farm, and transporting any farm products, then you are not required to have a CDL. (source)
Commercial motor vehicle drivers are required to have a CDL if the gross vehicle weight rating is 26,001 or more lbs.
If you are driving any type of a commercial motor vehicle that has a GVWR over 26,001 lbs then you will have to have to have a commercial drivers license.
To get the in depth explanation to what a CDL is then check out this outstanding article where I explain everything about it.
What is a Non CMV?
A non CMV (commercial motor vehicle) are vehicles that are not used for transporting freight or passengers for revenue/compensation across state lines (interstate) or within state lines (intrastate).
As a matter of fact in many states you can even drive a semi-truck without a CDL as long as you aren’t using it to move freight.
Example 1: An example of a non-CMV is a passenger car that is transporting passengers or personal belongings across state lines from Illinois to California.
Example 2: A pickup truck is used to transport camping equipment and a family of four from Indiana to Wyoming. This is a non CMV because they truck is not transporting freight or passengers for revenue.
Summary: What Is A CMV?
We have just discussed what a CMV (Commercial Motor Vehicle) is, and the different types of commercial motor vehicles. T
here are wide variety of different commercial motor vehicles, which include the light, medium, and heavy commercial vehicles.
We have also provided information on what a commercial motor vehicle driver is and what a non-commercial motor vehicle is.
There are numerous employment opportunities out there for a commercial motor vehicle driver without driving a big rig and being on the road for weeks at a time.
People can get their CDL (commercial driver’s license), then add different endorsements to add additional employment opportunities choices.
Any commercial motor vehicle that is being used to haul freight or people for revenue is a CMV.
A vehicle that has been named “Commercial” in the United States has the title registered in their state and it is usually owned by some type of company.
Driving a commercial motor vehicle does require special skills and knowledge, which is why a commercial driver’s license is required.
Are you considering employment driving a CMV?
If so, then you need to make sure that you have the proper driver’s license in your state to legally drive a commercial motor vehicle.
You can go to the United States Department of Transportation (DOT) to learn more information about a CDL and commercial motor vehicles.