New Mexico CDL Requirements

New Mexico CDL Classes

      You must be at least 18 years old to operate a commercial motor vehicle within the state of New Mexico (intrastate) and at least 21 years of age to drive a commercial motor vehicle outside the state of New Mexico (interstate). You must also be at least 21 years old to transport materials that are deemed hazardous and to transport passengers using a commercial motor vehicle. You need a New Mexico CDL in order to operate either commercial or non-commercial motor vehicles that fall into the following categories:

Class A
      Any combination of vehicles with a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating of 26,001 pounds or more, provided that the gross vehicle weight rating of the towed vehicle is in excess of 10,000 pounds.  

Class B
      Any single vehicle with a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating of 26,001 or more pounds, as well as any vehicle towing another vehicle that does not exceed a weight of 10,000 pounds. 

Class C
      Any vehicle or combination of vehicles that does not meet the criteria of either Class A or Class B, but is designed to transport 16 or more passengers (including the driver), or is used in transporting materials classified as hazardous in the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act. Each applicant must also have a passenger or hazardous materials endorsement in order to obtain a Class C commercial driver’s license. 

Applying for a New Jersey Commercial Learner’s Permit

      You must already possess a New Mexico commercial learner’s permit (CLP) before you can take the CDL Skills Test. Before applying for a New Mexico commercial learner’s permit, you must already possess a valid New Mexico Class D driver’s license. You will be issued a New Mexico commercial driver’s license (CDL) when you pass both the written general knowledge test and the CDL Skills Test. 

      In order to obtain a New Mexico commercial learner’s permit, you must:

  •       Be at least 18 years old for intrastate driving (within the state of New Mexico only).
  •       Be at least 21 years of age for interstate driving (outside the state of New Mexico).
  •       Be at least 21 years of age to transport materials deemed hazardous.
  •       Be at least 21 years of age to transport passengers in a CMV.
  •       Possess a valid New Mexico Class D driver’s license.
  •       Provide your current out-of-state driver’s license or I.D. card (if you are not currently licensed in New Mexico).
  •       Provide your Social Security card.
  •       Provide proof of identification.
  •       Prove you are of legal U.S. status by providing the required documents (State birth certificate, U.S. passport, etc.).
  •       Provide 2 proofs of your current New Mexico residency that shows your name and address (i.e., a utility bill, vehicle registration, insurance card, etc.).
  •       Provide your current D.O.T. Medical Examiner’s Certificate and completed Medical Examination Report
  •       Pass the vision exam (you must have at least 20/40 vision in each eye with or without glasses).
  •       Pass the color blindness test (you must be able to recognize green, red, and amber colors).
  •       Pass the CDL written knowledge test.
  •       Pay any applicable fees.

      If you have any questions about which documents to bring to your nearest New Mexico CDL Test and License Field Office when you apply for your commercial learner’s permit, you can either call your local New Mexico CDL Test and License Field Office or, you can call the New Mexico Motor Vehicle Division toll-free at (888) 683-4636  and speak to a customer service representative. You can also contact the New Mexico CDL Help Desk by calling (505) 476-1588 or (505) 476-1589 and someone will be happy to answer any questions you may have about obtaining your CDL in the state of New Mexico. If you prefer, you can contact the New Mexico CDL Help Desk by email at NMCDL.HelpDesk@state.nm.us.

CDL Written Tests

      All commercial driver’s license applicants must pass the general knowledge written test for the class and type of vehicle they wish to obtain a CDL for. The CDL general knowledge test consists of 50 questions. In order to receive a passing score, each applicant is required to answer at least 80% of the questions correctly in the time allotted for that test. All written tests require a score of at least 80% to pass. Any applicant that exceeds the time limit or incorrectly answers too many questions on the general knowledge test will fail and will be required to wait at least seven consecutive days before they will be allowed to take the test again. Applicants are allowed to take any one of the CDL knowledge tests a total of three times within a one year period. If the applicant fails all three attempts, they will be prohibited from taking the CDL knowledge test for one year from the date of the very first attempt (before the three retests). If an applicant is found to be cheating or committing an offense while taking the test, they will have either their CDL or their CDL application invalidated for a period of no greater than one year from the date of determination. The CDL holder will then be required to acquire a Class D driver’s license. After one year, the CDL applicant may then reapply and retest for the commercial driver’s license.

      Once you successfully pass the CDL general knowledge written test, the New Mexico Motor Vehicle Division will issue you a commercial learner’s permit so that you can practice operating a commercial motor vehicle. You may only operate a CMV under the supervision of a front seat passenger who is at least 21 years old and carries a valid CDL of the same class or greater than the class of vehicle you are operating. If you do not successfully pass the CDL Skills Test and obtain your commercial driver’s license before your commercial learner’s permit expires, then you will be required to renew your commercial learner’s permit.  

      Drivers who hold a valid out-of-state CDL are not required to take the written tests to exchange their out-of-state CDL for a New Mexico commercial driver’s license of the same class and the same endorsements.

      Over 60% of first time CDL applicants fail the written test! Be sure to download and study the New Mexico Commercial Driver License Manual and the New Mexico Commercial Driver License Manual Specific Addendum as they contain the information you need to pass the CDL tests, including some sample test questions. 

      Our Free CDL Practice Tests will help prepare you for the actual CDL knowledge tests administered by the DMV.

      Click here to see the map and clickable list of New Mexico CDL Test and License Field Offices that offer the CDL written tests.

Let Truck Driving Schools Info Connect You With a Reputable CDL Training School In Your Area!

Are you ready to take the next step and begin your career as a well-paid professional truck driver? Our large network of nationally recognized truck driving schools will make it easy for you to find the right school and get started training immediately. The schools in our network hold one or more of the following quality standards:

  • State Licensure
  • PTDI Certification
  • Nationally Recognized Accreditation

Simply fill out the 1-minute application below.

 

Applying for a New Mexico Commercial Driver’s License

      In order to obtain a commercial driver’s license in the state of New Mexico, you must:

  •       Possess a valid New Mexico commercial learner’s permit (CLP).
  •       Possess a valid New Mexico Class D driver’s license.
  •       Possess a current D.O.T. card (cannot be more than 2 years old).
  •       Provide proof of vehicle insurance and vehicle registration (must be verified before you can take the test).
  •       Provide a test vehicle of the same class as the CDL you are testing for (must display a valid inspection sticker). 
  •       Provide a passenger that is 21 years of age or older with a valid New Mexico CDL to ride with you in your test vehicle to the test location.
  •       Pass the CDL Skills Test.
  •       Pay the first time CDL Skills Test fee of $150.
  •       Pay the $18 fee to cover the cost of the 4 year CDL (the fee is $34 for the 8 year CDL).
  •       Out-of-state CDL applicants must pay a fee of $33 for the 4 year CDL ($49 for the 8 year CDL).
The CDL Skills Test

      Once you pass the CDL general knowledge test, you will be allowed to schedule an appointment to take the CDL Skills Test. All CDL Skills Tests are administered by state certified third party CDL testers

      The CDL Skills Test is a three part test that consists of a Pre-trip Inspection, a Basic Vehicle Controls Test, and an On-Road Driving Test. The test will take approximately two hours to complete. You will be required to take the test in the same class and type of motor vehicle you plan to drive once you obtain your CDL.  If you take the CDL Skills Test in a commercial motor vehicle that is not equipped with air brakes, then you will have an air brakes restriction attached to your commercial driver’s license. If you fail any part of the CDL Skills Test more than twice, you will be required to wait a period of one year before you will be allowed to take the test again. The first time test fee is $150. Any and all applicable CDL Skills Test fees are to be paid to the third party examiner and not to the State of New Mexico.

  •       Pre-trip Inspection: Before you can take the CDL driving tests, you will first be tested on your knowledge of the class of vehicle you plan on driving once you obtain your CDL. The Pre-trip inspection also determines if your commercial vehicle is safe enough to drive on public roads.
  •       Basic Controls Test: Before you can take the Road Skills Test, you will first need to prove that you have the skills to operate a commercial motor vehicle on public roads. This test consists of various off-road maneuvers such as backing up your vehicle, moving your vehicle forward, and making turns within a defined area. 
  •       Road Skills Test: Once you pass the first two tests, you will be required to drive your commercial vehicle on public roads in various traffic situations. You will be required to operate the same class of commercial vehicle you plan to drive once you obtain your CDL.

      The Basic Controls Test may include the following maneuvers:

  •       90 degree alley docking
  •       Straight line backing
  •       Parallel parking (driver side)
  •       Parallel parking (conventional)
  •       Offset back/right
  •       Offset back/left

      The Road Skills Test will be administered on a route predetermined by the examiner. The test route will most likely include the following:

  •       Starting
  •       Stopping
  •       Braking
  •       Turning
  •       Observing traffic signs
  •       Observing traffic signals
  •       Observing other traffic
  •       Using vehicle controls
  •       Maintaining proper lane positions
  •       Downgrades
  •       Downgrade stopping
  •       Upgrades
  •       Upgrade stopping
  •       Railroad crossings
  •       Bridge clearance
  •       Underpass clearance
  •       General observance of traffic laws
  •       General safe driving practices for trucks or buses    

     On the day of your CDL Skills Test appointment you must:

  1.       Arrive on time.
  2.       Bring your valid commercial learner’s permit.
  3.       Bring your valid D.O.T. medical card.
  4.       Bring a passenger (age 21 or older) that is qualified to drive a CMV with the same class of CDL or greater than the test vehicle.
  5.       Bring a test vehicle that is the same class of license that you are testing for and that has passed inspection.

      Failure to do any of the above may result in an immediate cancellation of your CDL Skills Test appointment!  The New Mexico Motor Vehicle Division has the right to cancel any CDL Skills Test appointment due to bad weather, under sourced staffing, or any other unforseen circumstances.

      Once you pass the CDL Skills Test, you must bring the following documents to any New Mexico CDL Test and License Field Office in order to receive the commercial driver’s license:

  •       Valid Class D driver’s license
  •       Valid commercial learner’s permit
  •       Sealed envelope containing the CDL Skills Test scores
  •       All other required documents (proofs of identity, self-certification, D.O.T. card, etc.)

      Be sure to download and study the New Mexico Commercial Driver License Manual and the New Mexico Commercial Driver License Manual Specific Addendum as they contain pertinent information that will help you pass the CDL Skills Test. 

     Click here to see the map and clickable list of New Mexico certified Third Party Examiners that offer the CDL skills Test.

Commercial Driver Self-Certification

      In the state of New Mexico, all commercial driver’s license holders must self-certify as to what type of driving they will be doing (intrastate or interstate), and whether they meet or exceed the medical and physical standards put forth by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to legally and safely operate a commercial motor vehicle. All CDL applicants must self-certify, as either “excepted” or “non-excepted”, once they obtain their commercial driver’s license.

      All commercial drivers who intend to operate a commercial motor vehicle for the following purposes only, do not require a commercial driver’s license (excepted) and therefor are waived from self-certification:

  •       Operators of rescue and first-aid squad vehicles used during emergencies and other related activities.
  •       Firefighting vehicles operated by either paid or volunteer firefighters.
  •       Non-civilian operators of military equipment used by the Department of Defense..
  •       Operators of recreational vehicles that are being used for personal recreational use only.
  •       Farmers using a commercial motor vehicle to transport agricultural products, farm machinery, or farm supplies within 150 air-miles of their farm.

      If you intend to operate a commercial motor vehicle for any other purpose than those listed above, then you are required to hold a valid CDL (non-excepted) and must self-certify. 

      In the state of New Mexico, all new CDL holders and those renewing their CDL must complete and submit the Driver Certification for Issuance of a Commercial Driver’s Permit or License Form whether they are required to submit medical documents or not.

Medical Examination Report for Commercial Driver’s License

      All CDL applicants must have the Medical Examiner’s Certificate and the Medical Examination Report completed by one of the following:

  •       Licensed U.S. doctor of medicine (M.D.)
  •       Doctor of Osteopathy (D.O)
  •       Licensed physician assistant (P.A.)
  •       Advanced practice registered nurse
  •       Chiropractor

      The Medical Examiner’s Certificate must be dated within the previous two years and attached to the Medical Examination Report. If you prefer, you can use the New Mexico Commercial Driver Licensing – Medical Examination Certification Form instead. The New Mexico Motor Vehicle Division will only accept your medical forms if they have been completed by a qualified physician who has been certified by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. You can search for a FMCSA certified physician by using the National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners.

      The FMSCA requires you to have at least 20/40 vision in each eye and a field of vision of at least 140 degrees (70 degrees in each eye) in order to be certified to operate a commercial motor vehicle. Under certain conditions, you may be able to be waived from these and other medical requirements.     

      Once you have completed and signed the Medical Examiner’s Certificate, the Medical Examination Report (or the Commercial Driver Licensing – Medical Examination Certification Form), the Driver Certification for Issuance of a Commercial Driver’s Permit or License Form, and any applicable medical waivers, you can submit your documents by doing any of the following:

  •       Fax your completed and signed documents to (505) 476-1578
  •       Mail your completed and signed documents to:

                              2546 Camino Entrada 
                              Santa Fe, NM 87507                        

      Be sure to double check and, if needed, correct your information before you submit your documents. All CDL applicants are advised to keep copies of these documents for their own records. Failure to comply with state and federal self-certification regulations will result in a cancellation of your commercial driving privileges.

      If you have any questions regarding self-certification, you can contact the New Mexico CDL Help Desk by calling (505) 476-1588 or (505) 476-1589 and someone will be happy to answer any questions you may have. If you prefer, you can contact the New Mexico CDL Help Desk by email at NMCDL.HelpDesk@state.nm.us.

Hazmat Endorsement

      Any person that is applying for a Hazardous Materials CDL endorsement is required to undergo a federal background check and federal fingerprint check according to guidelines set by the Transportation Security Administration. All applicants are required to complete and sign the HME Threat Assessment Program Application. All applicants must also provide the required documents to verify their identification and legal U.S. status. For more information, check out the Transportation Security Administration’s F.A.Q. page. You can apply for the security threat assessment on the TSA Hazardous Material Endorsement Enrollment Website. You must begin applying at least 30 days before the expiration of your CDL. You can start the application process on the HTAP Online Application Website. To apply by phone call (855) 347-8371. Use the TSA Enrollment Center Locator to find the nearest TSA approved fingerprint office.

Military Drivers

      In the state of New Mexico, if you are currently serving in the military or have been honorably discharged within the last 90 days, and you have driven military vehicles that would require a CDL to operate as a civilian with a 2 year safe driving record, then you may qualify for the waiver of the CDL Skills Test and may be exempt from taking the commercial driver skills test. You will still be required to take the written tests. Certain restrictions apply. Download, print, and complete the Application for Military Skills Test Waiver to start the process. 

      If you have any questions about the Application for Military Skills Test Waiver, you can either call your local New Mexico CDL Test and License Field Office or, you can call the New Mexico Motor Vehicle Division toll-free at (888) 683-4636  and speak to a customer service representative. You can also contact the New Mexico CDL Help Desk by calling (505) 476-1588 or (505) 476-1589 and someone will be happy to answer any questions you may have about obtaining your CDL in the state of New Mexico. If you prefer, you can contact the New Mexico CDL Help Desk by email at NMCDL.HelpDesk@state.nm.us.

New Mexico CDL Endorsements

      H      Placarded Hazmat      Required to transport hazardous materials under DOT regulations. 

      N      Tank Vehicles      Required to transport liquids in bulk containers of 1,000 gallons or more.

      X      Tanker/Hazardous Materials Combination   Required to transport hazardous materials in tank vehicles   

      T      Double/Triple Trailers      Indicates CDL holder is certified to operate multiple trailer haulers. 

      P     Passengers      Indicates the CDL holder is certified to operate passenger vehicles.

      S     School Bus      Indicates the CDL holder is authorized to operate a school bus. A School Bus Certificate is also required.

New Mexico CDL Restrictions      

      B      Corrective Lenses Required

      E      CMV with Automatic Transmission Only

      K      CMV Intrastate Only

      L       No Air Brakes CMV 

      M      No Class A Bus

      N      No Class A/B Bus

      O      No Tractor Trailer

      S       Limited to Government Plated Vehicles

      T      Limited to Buses Only

      Y     Yearly Renewal 

Important New Mexico Commercial Driver’s License Resources 

New Mexico Commercial Driver License Manual
New Mexico Commercial Driver License Manual Specific Addendum
New Mexico Truckers Guide
New Mexico CDL Practice Tests
Application for Military Skills Test Waiver
HME Threat Assessment Program Application
Driver License Surrender Form
Vehicle Certification Form
Driver Certification for Issuance of a Commercial Driver’s Permit or License Form
Commercial Driver Licensing – Medical Examination Certification Form
Medical Examination Report Form 649-F
Medical Examiner’s Certificate
National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners

 

      Check out our list of truck driving schools in New Mexico that will provide you with the necessary skills to obtain your commercial driver’s license and start your career in the exciting field of commercial truck driving! You may also want to check out our nationwide list of truck driving schools. 

 

 Map of New Mexico CDL Written Test Locations 

TitleAddress
1. Alamogordo MVD 263C Robert H. Bradley Drive, Alamogordo, NM 88310
2. Albuquerque MVD 801 4th Street NW, Albuquerque, NM 87102
3. Albuquerque MVD 3211 Coors Blvd SW, Suite G4, Albuquerque, NM 87121
4. Albuquerque MVD 11500 Menaul Blvd NE, Suite F1, Albuquerque, NM 87112
5. Albuquerque MVD 4575 San Mateo Blvd NE, Suite G-190, Albuquerque, NM 87109
6. Albuquerque MVD 1451 4th Avenue, Bldg 20245, Albuquerque, NM 87117
7. Albuquerque MVD 4531 Eubank Blvd NE, Albuquerque, NM 87111
8. Albuquerque MVD 4100 Menaul Blvd NE, Suite 1-C, Albuquerque, NM 87110
9. Albuquerque MVD 6271 Riverside Plaza Lane NW, Albuquerque, NM 87120
10. Albuquerque MVD 5565 4th Street NW, Albuquerque, NM 87107
11. Albuquerque MVD 1625 Rio Bravo Blvd SW, Albuquerque, NM 87105
12. Albuquerque MVD 901 Eubank Blvd NE, Albuquerque, NM 87112
13. Albuquerque MVD 10200 Menaul Blvd NE, Suite 100, Albuquerque, NM 87112
14. Artesia MVD 602 S. 1st Street, Artesia, NM 88210
15. Aztec MVD 201 W. Chaco Street, Suite 5, Aztec, NM 87410
16. Belen MVD 100 S. 5th Street, Belen, NM 87002
17. Bloomfield MVD 915 N. 1st Street, Bloomfield, NM 87413
18. Carlsbad MVD 3607 National Parks Hwy, Carlsbad, NM 88220
19. Carrizozo MVD 105 6th Street, Carrizozo, NM 88301
20. Chama MVD 299 4th Street, Chama, NM 87520
21. Clayton MVD 834 Main Street, Clayton, NM 88415
22. Cloudcroft MVD 201 Burro Avenue, Cloudcroft, NM 88317
23. Clovis MVD 814 W. 6th Street, Clovis, NM 88101
24. Cuba MVD 16B Cordova Street, Cuba, NM 87013
25. Deming MVD 322 S. Silver Street, Deming, NM 88030
26. Espanola MVD 1121 Santa Clara Peak Road, Espanola, NM 87532
27. Eunice MVD 1106 Avenue J, Eunice, NM 88231
28. Farmington MVD 3501 E. Main Street, Suite N, Farmington, NM 87402
29. Fort Sumner MVD 501 Avenue C, Fort Sumner, NM 88119
30. Gallup MVD 1710 E. Aztec Avenue, Gallup, NM 87301
31. Grants MVD 1016 Nimitz Drive, Grants, NM 87020
32. Hobbs MVD 300 N. Turner Street, Hobbs, NM 88240
33. Las Cruces MVD 505 S. Main Street, Suite 357, Las Cruces, NM 88001
34. Las Cruces Del Rey MVD 3291 Del Rey Blvd, Suite 10, Las Cruces, NM 88004
35. Las Vegas MVD 2522 Ridge Runner Road, Las Vegas, NM 87701
36. Lordsburg MVD 809 Main Street, Lordsburg, NM 88045
37. Los Alamos MVD 997 Central Avenue, Los Alamos, NM 87544
38. Los Lunas MVD 1000 Main Street NW, Suite 4, Los Lunas, NM 87031
39. Lovington MVD 117 E. Avenue B, Lovington, NM 88260
40. Mora MVD Courthouse, Hwy 518 Main Street, Mora, NM 87732
41. Moriarty MVD 201 Broadway Street, Moriarty, NM 87035
42. Portales MVD 1410 S. Avenue O, Portales, NM 88130
43. Raton MVD 1277 S. 2nd Street, Suite B, Raton, NM 87740
44. Red River MVD 100 E. Main Street, Red River, NM 87558
45. Reserve MVD Main Street (at Gilbert Road), Reserve, NM 87830
46. Rio Rancho MVD 4114 Sabana Grande Blvd, Rio Rancho, NM 87124
47. Roswell MVD 200 E. Wilshire Blvd, Roswell, NM 88201
48. Roy MVD 425 Chicosa Street, Roy, NM 87743
49. Ruidoso MVD 301 W. Hwy 70, Suite 3, Ruidoso, NM 88345
50. Santa Fe MVD 850 St. Michaels Drive, Santa Fe, NM 87505
51. Santa Rosa MVD 141 S. 5th Street, Santa Rosa, NM 88435
52. Silver City MVD 1876 Hwy 180 East, Silver City, NM 88061
53. Socorro MVD 102 S. 6th Street, Socorro, NM 87801
54. Springer MVD 506 5th Street, Springer, NM 87747
55. Truth or Consequences MVD 1912 N. Date Street, Truth or Consequences, NM 87901
56. Taos MVD 1038 S. Salazar Street, Taos, NM 87571
57. Tucumcari MVD 122 W. Main Street, Tucumcari, NM 88401
58. Tularosa MVD 705 St. Francis Drive, Tularosa, NM 88352

 

 

Map of New Mexico Third Party CDL Skills Test Locations

TitleAddress
1. Central New Mexico Community College 5600 Eagle Rock Avenue, Albuquerque, NM 87113
2. Dona Ana Community College 2345 E. Nevada Avenue, Las Cruces, NM 88001
3. Eastern New Mexico University 52 University Blvd, Roswell, NM 88203
4. New Mexico Junior College Training & Outreach, 5317 N. Lovington Hwy, Hobbs, NM 88240
5. San Juan College 4601 College Blvd, Farmington, NM 87402

 

Some CDL testing locations require you to set up an appointment. CDL testing hours may vary. Please call the testing location for more information.

 

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New Mexico CDL Requirements
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