Next month, new cars sold in the UK will come with new number plates.
But what do all those numbers and letters actually mean, and what exactly is changing this spring?
Here’s everything you need to know about the licence plate changes in March 2023 👇
First, a quick reminder of what the numbers and letters indicate:
So a car registered in Norwich in October 2022 would have the number plate AO 72 ABC, for example.
March’s changes will impact the first numbers on the licence plate, the age identifiers.
Because we’re entering a new six-month period, the numbers will switch from 72 to 23. The other numbers and letters will be assigned as usual.
So the above hypothetical car, if it was registered in Norwich next month, would have the number plate AO 23 ABC.
It’s not really accurate to say that the number plate itself impacts the price of a car. But because it indicates the car’s age, it’s a handy barometer for value.
The value of a car will (generally) drop year-on-year. Newer cars are naturally more expensive, while cars that are a few years old usually become cheaper.
Number plates, therefore, quickly let anyone know roughly how old a car is. On the other hand, a buyer will know a car with 22, 72 or 23 on it is fairly new.
In 2020, Richard Evans of WeBuyAnyCar said: “When a car becomes a plate older, this typically depreciates the value of the car, as newer, more desirable plates are released.”
So if you want to grab a bargain for a nearly-new car, getting a car registered one plate back might be a good idea. Similarly, if you want to sell your car for the best value possible, do it before the new plates come out.
Again, number plates don’t directly impact the premium - but older and newer cars, as indicated by the age identifier, do get different valuation.
Personalised number plates are a different kettle of fish, however. Many insurance policies don’t cover personalised plates because they are so vulnerable to theft, especially if the plates are funny or notable.
You might be able to get it covered in an add-on policy, but many insurers are reluctant to do so due to the increased theft risk.
Don't forget, no matter your number plate, it only takes a few minutes to get a quote with Cuvva.