Author Topic: English License plate numbers  (Read 329 times)

zak

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English License plate numbers
« on: May 03, 2021, 19:07:41 »
I love the Brits with all their great classic cars and classic car clubs. They are genuine enthusiasts for sure.
But what is the story about the buying and selling of registration numbers to and from private vendors for sometimes thousands of Pounds Sterling ?
I don't get it.
What's the story on this pls ?
Thanks,

jz
1967 250 SL
1983 280 SL
2015 ML 250 Bluetec
2007 ML CDI
2004 E 320 Wagon
1999 E300 Turbodiesel

Cees Klumper

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Re: English License plate numbers
« Reply #1 on: May 03, 2021, 20:41:23 »
As far as I can tell, these personalized plates are legally transferable.
The higher prices are for plates deemed desirable (= for showing off). Bit speculative perhaps.
For me, the expensive ones go in the category of "For the man who has everything" or, alternatively, "Some people have too much money, while others constantly struggle to make ends meet".
Cees Klumper
1969 Mercedes 280 SL automatic white
1972 Lancia Fulvia Coupe 1.3 rosso corsa
1971 Volkswagen 411 'squareback'
1968 Triumph Spitfire MK3 1.3 canary yellow
1973 Datsun 240Z (son's daily driver)
1990 Ford Bronco II 2WD colonial white

naristodemou

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Re: English License plate numbers
« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2021, 22:00:28 »
How very true...,. Britain is one of the very few countries where the asking price for goods does not reflect the actual cost of goods (plus a reasonable markup) but unfortunately is determined by what people are prepared to pay for such goods.....as some of my posh British friends say “if you have to ask for the price it means you can’t afford it” .

Personal registration plates which  in theory should have no value at all, in practice  form the basis of a whole resale industry fueled by individuals willing to pay money either to have their initials on their number plate, or to have an older style number which would hide the age  of the car. Even the vehicle registration office (DVLC is called if not mistaken) is selling such numbers since all UK numbers are transferable.

 In most others countries a registration plate is assigned to a car and is something like a VIN plate that cannot be changed and dies with the car unless the car is sold to another country.
Nicolas Aristodemou
Nicosia - CYPRUS
280SL Auto 1970 US spec (W113), 380SL 1982 R107, Citroen DS23 Pallas 1973, Triumph TR4 1963, Triumph Stag 1973, Mini Cooper S Mk1
1965, Jaguar 3.8 Mk2 1962, VW Beetle 1978 Karman Converible, 1987 Ferrari 328GTS

MikeSimon

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Re: English License plate numbers
« Reply #3 on: May 04, 2021, 12:33:25 »
Another issue in Britain is, that plates are tied to a specific year. So, if you have a classic and want a plate of the year the car was built....
I remember years ago a plate in the U.K. was sold for quite some money, because it read PEN I 5...
1970/71 280SL Automatic
Sandy Beige
Parchment Leather
Power Steering
Automatic
Hardtop
Heated Tinted Rear Window
German specs
3rd owner

RAY

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Re: English License plate numbers
« Reply #4 on: May 04, 2021, 16:30:22 »
Hi Zak,
Basically you can buy and register any number plate that is currently available through any individual, company or the DVLC and put it on your car.
Generally if a plate begins or ends just with the number 1 it will be expensive. I believe the plate F1 sold for over £100,000 some time ago, crazy, I know, but I guess if you have that sort of money and thats what you want, then thats what you get. Simple.
The only exception is that you can't put a plate on your car that appears to make it newer than it actually is.

zak

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Re: English License plate numbers
« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2021, 19:45:36 »
Interesting system you have over there, Ray.
Over here in NJ USA , last year I got Historic Lic Plates for my 107 from NJ Div of Motor Vehicles that read -- ZAK--. The cost was $ 95 bucks.
I have just made application for historic lic plates for my 113 that read --ZOOM-- for the same $ 95.
I tried to get just ---Z--- , but 3 letters or numbers is the least amount you can get on your plate.

Fun stuff, I guess.

jz 
1967 250 SL
1983 280 SL
2015 ML 250 Bluetec
2007 ML CDI
2004 E 320 Wagon
1999 E300 Turbodiesel

MikeSimon

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Re: English License plate numbers
« Reply #6 on: May 04, 2021, 19:54:20 »
Here in Ohio, you pay only once (for 50 years) for Historic Plates. If you have them personalized (vanity style plate) you pay for renewal every year like for every normal plate and it defeats the purpose IMO. You can also have a "year" plate once you have a Historic plate, i.e: if you have an original 1970 Ohio plate, you can put this on your 1970 280SL and run them but you must carry the Historic plate in the vehicle with you at all time. Historic plates are available for any vehicle older than 25 years. Historic plate vehicles MUST NOT be used for daily use, e.g.: driving to work, go shopping etc. Basically limited to drive to shows and events
There is also a "Collector" plate. Requirements here are that the vehicle has to be on a list that the BMV keeps. You must own another form of transport if you want to register a "Collector" plate.
1970/71 280SL Automatic
Sandy Beige
Parchment Leather
Power Steering
Automatic
Hardtop
Heated Tinted Rear Window
German specs
3rd owner

ejboyd5

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Re: English License plate numbers
« Reply #7 on: May 04, 2021, 20:53:00 »
Number plate not for sale. At least not during my lifetime.

MikeSimon

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Re: English License plate numbers
« Reply #8 on: May 04, 2021, 22:02:15 »
I used to have that (misguided) passion for vanity plates. At a certain point, I had these plates on my vehicles: 1BADV8, MTRCYCL, HARLEY, 79CBX, CEEBX, REDK1, DCATI, SDCAR, XLSPRGR, CLBMN, IMA4NR, 82KZ13. When the time for renewal came, I had to write a check for over $800.- to the Ohio BMV and I decided no more. Changed everything over 25 years old to Historic plates and some to "Collector" vehicles. Makes me feel much better!
1970/71 280SL Automatic
Sandy Beige
Parchment Leather
Power Steering
Automatic
Hardtop
Heated Tinted Rear Window
German specs
3rd owner

Cees Klumper

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Re: English License plate numbers
« Reply #9 on: May 04, 2021, 22:05:08 »
Everything can be overdone I suppose!

My bright yellow Spitfire came with 'I TAXI' California plates.

On our daily Volvo, I got plates that say WDN SHZ

Anyone care to guess?
Cees Klumper
1969 Mercedes 280 SL automatic white
1972 Lancia Fulvia Coupe 1.3 rosso corsa
1971 Volkswagen 411 'squareback'
1968 Triumph Spitfire MK3 1.3 canary yellow
1973 Datsun 240Z (son's daily driver)
1990 Ford Bronco II 2WD colonial white

stickandrudderman

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Re: English License plate numbers
« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2021, 22:46:34 »
I wasn't born before 63 so I'm not sure if there was a sequence then but any combination of (up to) 3 letters and (up to) 3 numbers could be had from A1 to YYY 999
In normal form, starting 1963, UK registration plates had a letter of the alphabet that was assigned to year of registration.
So, back in August 63 if you bought a car and didn't want any particular registration it would be assigned one by the DVLA and take the form of three letters, space, three numbers, space and the letter A (for 63).
In August 64 the last letter changed to B and so on.
Just to confuse matters, the letters I, O and Z were omitted from this sequence so Y was the last to take this format in 1982.
Then the format was reversed so the year letter would be at the beginning (so starting with A in August 82).
Then when that sequence was also used up they introduced 6 month intervals instead of yearly and changed the format completely to letter, letter, number, number, letter, letter, letter where the two numbers now represented a 6 month period. For some reason, it was decided that this two number sequence should start with 02.
So, (are you bored yet?) it sometimes happened that the plate that was assigned might look like a word or phrase and so cause amusement or derision, depending upon the viewpiont of the observer.
Certain combinations might confer some special status such as HRH 1.
Rumour has it that a wealthy individual residing in one of the more salubrious parts of London had two Ferraris with the registration numbers "NOT 1" and "BUT 2" which he liked to park side by side.....





FGN59

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Re: English License plate numbers
« Reply #11 on: May 04, 2021, 22:57:28 »
It’s a good thing you guys (Brits) invented the computer too (for all practical purposes it was Turing who made the first electronic calculator, to the best of my knowledge, and hats off to him and British science in general), because that license plate numbering system is a little bit not so simple!
François

1969 280SL US specs, 4-speed manual, beige-grey (726H), parchment leather
1994 Toyota Land Cruiser SW HDJ80 4.2L diesel
1955 Massey Ferguson TEF20 diesel tractor 😁
sold:
1962 Jaguar MK2 3.8L (4.2L XJ6 engine), black, tan leather interior
1968 Peugeot 204 roadster, white, black interior

66andBlue

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Re: English License plate numbers
« Reply #12 on: May 04, 2021, 23:21:21 »
Not just the license plate numbering system, a computer could also become handy to understand, use and manage the bewildering and nonsensical "Imperial Units" created by the British Empire (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imperial_units) .
Why the system survives in part here in the USA remains a mystery to me.  :(
Alfred
1964 230SL manual 4-speed 568H signal red
1966 230SL automatic 334G light blue (sold)
1968 280SL automatic (now 904G midnight blue)

franjo_66

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Re: English License plate numbers
« Reply #13 on: May 05, 2021, 00:32:21 »
Everything can be overdone I suppose!

My bright yellow Spitfire came with 'I TAXI' California plates.

On our daily Volvo, I got plates that say WDN SHZ

Anyone care to guess?

Wooden Shoes?
Franjo

1965 230SL Black/Auto/RHD
2005 Porsche Cayenne Turbo
1983 BMW 735i
1986 560 SEC
1991 500SL
1982 Holden Statesman DeVille

Cees Klumper

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Re: English License plate numbers
« Reply #14 on: May 05, 2021, 03:59:39 »
Yes, Franjo takes the win.
I actually wear Dutch wooden shoes on our property in France. Very comfortable (after a while).
Cees Klumper
1969 Mercedes 280 SL automatic white
1972 Lancia Fulvia Coupe 1.3 rosso corsa
1971 Volkswagen 411 'squareback'
1968 Triumph Spitfire MK3 1.3 canary yellow
1973 Datsun 240Z (son's daily driver)
1990 Ford Bronco II 2WD colonial white

naristodemou

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Re: English License plate numbers
« Reply #15 on: May 05, 2021, 09:04:24 »
A photo of the number plate of my 280SL..... my friends call it 10 out of 10   :D . What is best is that I didn't pay anything to get it since historic cars in Cyprus have a numeric prefix and end with the letter A. They stated with number 1A back in 2005 and today numbers are circa 1150A. So sometimes you can get interesting plates for free.....
Nicolas Aristodemou
Nicosia - CYPRUS
280SL Auto 1970 US spec (W113), 380SL 1982 R107, Citroen DS23 Pallas 1973, Triumph TR4 1963, Triumph Stag 1973, Mini Cooper S Mk1
1965, Jaguar 3.8 Mk2 1962, VW Beetle 1978 Karman Converible, 1987 Ferrari 328GTS

zak

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Re: English License plate numbers
« Reply #16 on: Today at 19:59:07 »
Also in NJ the historic plates - vanity or regular are good for as long as you own the car with no annual registration renewal charges.
I always thought that the euro shaped long rectangle license plates suit the 113 best. NJ requires front and rear plates , but  I have had a German plate on the front of my 250 sl for 30 + years and have never been stopped for it.   
1967 250 SL
1983 280 SL
2015 ML 250 Bluetec
2007 ML CDI
2004 E 320 Wagon
1999 E300 Turbodiesel