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Number plates donít suggest age for motorists

British Car Auctions, partnered with, have released results of a survey, which suggests that over 30% of participants can’t actually tell the age of a car by its number plate.

Instead, potential customers judge a car by its mileage and general condition, although age is of utmost importance to the other two thirds of potential customers.

This also explains why most motorists are confused by the current number plate system.

There were over 1200 responses to the survey, where participants were asked to identify the youngest number plate from four options.

Evidently, 32% failed the challenge, with 27% thinking the old style, pre 2001 plate, was the youngest rather than the September 2007 plate, which obviously means there are a lot of car buyers paying over the odds for a car that’s older than they think.

Three quarters of participants didn’t realize that the 08, for instance, on a number plate, signified a number plate registered from March to August, which is then followed by the 58 plate, which of course is the rest of the year.

This could mean that buyers are loosing out, for instance a 2006 ‘56’ BMW 318i, being in the later half of the year, will go for an average of over £900 more than the ’06’ registered car.

Source: Grant Draper at

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