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How Do Number Plates Work In The UK?

Vehicle registrations in the UK have to follow one of the following formats described below, so keep that in mind at all times when purchasing from some else to make sure it’s legal, or registering your own custom number so it adheres to the rules the DVLA has set out.

The Current/ New Style

The Current style, also referred to a ‘new style registrations’ were presented initially in September. They contain the year identifier as a number for example 01 = Mar 2001, 51 = Sep 2001 & so on.

The Prefix Style

The Prefix style registrations were introduced back in 1983. The prefix registrations always have a letter to specify the year that the vehicle was registered. The year identifier is the First letter on the registration, so A = Aug 1983, B = Aug 1984 & so on.

The Suffix Style

Suffix style registrations marks were first seen all the way back in 1963. These registrations contain a three letters, three numbers, and a last letter to specify the year that the vehicle was listed for. For instance, A = Aug 1963, B = Aug 1964 etc.

The Dateless Style

The dateless style registrant plates are highly valued number plates as they are only ever rare, but are also able to be added to any vehicle regardless of its age. The dateless registrations contain either 1, 2, or 3 letters or numbers in various combinations.

As you can see, all kinds of number plates include at least one number, as opposed to our friends across the Atlantic who are able to legally just have words on their number plates.

Also, because all number plates have to include a number, you will often see numbers being used in place of letters to get around this requirement, while still remaining road legal.

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