Big News: MSD’s Atomic EFI Receives CARB Exemption Status In California – Legal For All 1987-Older GM Cars and Trucks!

Big News: MSD’s Atomic EFI Receives CARB Exemption Status In California – Legal For All 1987-Older GM Cars and Trucks!

It isn’t often that we find ourselves celebrating anything to do with the California Air Resource Board, otherwise known as CARB around here but today is a different day. MSD has been granted CARB Exemption Status for its Atomic EFI system which means that it can be retrofit on any 1987-older GM car or truck legally. Prior to this exemption being granted, you’d fail a state inspection for having an Atomic EFI on your car or truck, even though you used it to swap out an old carb that probably wasn’t working correctly in the first place. If you are wrenching on a 1980s street machine you can now get all the benefits that the rest of the world has been seeing from the Atomic EFI system on your own car.

We still think that it is draconian and wrong that an operation like MSD Performance has to go through the byzantine process of getting CARB approval for a product that is clearly an upgrade in efficiency and technology to an older car but we’re happy that they did it and even happier for hot rodders in the state of California that they can legally install one of the most popular EFI kits in the gearhead universe today. Read the full release from MSD below!


MSD’s Atomic EFI Receives Distinctive CARB Exemption Status

El Paso,TX; March 25, 2014 – MSD Performance is excited to announce that the Atomic Fuel Injection System has been granted an Executive Order Number from the California Air Resources Board! This E.O. Number makes the Atomic the only aftermarket EFI system that is legal on 1987 and older GM vehicles in California!

The Atomic EFI system received E.O. Number D-722 which permits the system to be installed in place of the factory carburetor on 1987 and older GM passenger cars and trucks originally powered by a V8 engine. This Executive Order also means the Atomic EFI system provides “reasonable basis” for satisfying the anti-tampering requirements of the Federal Clean Air Act, thus allowing its use in all other States.

“Adding this unique benefit supports the distinctiveness of the Atomic technology devel oped by our engineering team”, said Manny Grijalva, VP of Marketing and Sales. “The ongoing accolades from our consumers, car builders and the media continues to substantiate that we have the best engineered EFI system available on the market.”

This is terrific news for enthusiasts with an ’87 and older GM car or truck as it means they can finally do away with their old carburetor and take advantage of the driveability benefits of a modern, self-learning EFI system such as quick starts, consistent idle and smooth power throughout all driving conditions.

Picture 2During thorough testing it was confirmed that the Atomic system did not reduce the effectiveness of the applicable vehicle pollution control systems and therefore was granted an exemption from the prohibitions of Section 27156 of the California Vehicle Code for 1987 and older General Motors passenger cars and pickups originally equipped with a V8 engine and carburetor. MSD will supply an information label with the E.O. Number and details that must be affixed on the vehicle for inspection purposes.

The MSD Atomic EFI system is designed for the do-it-yourself enthusiast and provides the easiest installation and initial setup for any EFI upgrade. For more information, go to or call MSD at (915) 857-5200

Founded in 1970, MSD is one of the most recognized industry names in ignition system products, EFI products and high performance parts. The company designs, develops, tests and manufactures its entire line ignition boxes, distributors, EFI systems, coils,  spark plug wires, crank triggers and other performance parts from its headquarters  in El Paso, TX.  MSD is part of the MSDP Group LLC family.

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10 thoughts on “Big News: MSD’s Atomic EFI Receives CARB Exemption Status In California – Legal For All 1987-Older GM Cars and Trucks!

    1. Brian Lohnes Post author

      GM has nothing to do with it. MSD went for an approval and this is what CARB granted them.

  1. bkb

    This is great! Hopefully we will see more EFI retrofits become carb legal in the near future. It costs quite a bit to get the EO/CARB number, so this precedent is key to getting other mfgs to do the same…

  2. 88ProStreetS10

    Ok, don’t get me wrong here – I really like the idea of MSD’s Atomic EFI unit in both concept and fuel savings – but its almost totally cost prohibitive – Imagine this – Sell the same unit at $500 dollars on todays market and you’ll have my business and of tens of thousands more hotrod guys besides myself.

  3. 3rd Generation

    Why aren’t ‘Suggested Retail’ prices included with all this markting propoganda ?

    “For more information, go to or call MSD at (915) 857-5200”

    Nope. Not going to do that Boys & Girls. And there is a vehicle in my garage all ready for this conversion.

    What are they afraid of ?

    Thus endeth the lesson.

  4. bkb

    500.00??? Not possible even with the lousiest of Chinese manufactured parts inside. Not to mention the R&D, certification costs and marketing expense. EFI (even TBI) is a significant upgrade over a carburetor with tuneable AF ratios, consistent performance, quick starting all the time and altitude compensation. My motorhome really wants this, but its a 77 Dodge…

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