Currently reading: The most expensive numberplates sold in the UK
Always fancied a personalised plate? Their prices vary, but these are the most expensive ever sold in the UK
Tom Morgan, deputy digital editor
News
5 mins read
1 July 2020

Personalised numberplates are very divisive things, prompting either admiration at the name or message on the plate, or derided for being a vanity item and dismissed as a waste of money. 

Whatever you think of them, boggle at the top ten most expensive numberplates ever sold in the UK below. For reference, we’ve even calculated what else you could buy with the money, in car terms. 

The most expensive numberplates sold in the UK: 

1 - 25 O - £518,480

The registration plate 25 O relates to the most expensive car ever sold at auction: the Ferrari 250 GTO. The plate’s £518,480 price tag may be dwarfed by the car’s £30,750,300 final bid, but it’s the most expensive plate sold in the UK yet. According to the DVLA, the plate now resides on an altogether more modern Ferrari - the LaFerrari hybrid hypercar.

The price of the plate could get you ten Audi TT RSs, but personalised plate vendor Regtransfers reckons it’s now increased in value, to £750,000 (fifteen TT RSs). 

2 – X 1 - £502,500

Taking a close second place is the registration plate X 1. Little is known about the owner of the plate, but based on DVLA records it is currently in use on a Mercedes CLA purchased within the last three years. The plate fetched its half-million pound price in November 2012.

You could enjoy ten Mercedes-AMG CLA 45s for the amount originally paid for the X 1 numberplate, and estimates suggest it has almost doubled its value since being purchased in 2012 to £1,000,000. It's unknown if the plate ever made its way onto a BMW X1 at any point.

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3 – G 1 - £500,000

G 1 was the country’s most expensive reg plate for little over a year before X 1 came along, pipping it by a mere £2500. Nevertheless, G 1 sold in September 2011 for precisely half a million pounds; the equivalent of around 28 Ford Fiesta STs. 

If the seller sold the plate today, they would – according to estimates – double their money, to £1million. The DVLA database shows no record of the plate being in use at the time of writing.

4 - RR 1 - £472,000

A relatively new entry to this list, RR 1 was purchased in September 2018 for an amount that narrowly misses out on a podium position. Originally issued in 1925, the last time this plate changed hands was back in the 1960s, where its then-new owner paid £5000 for it. 

Today the plate resides on a Rolls Royce Phantom, and seems like a worthwhile investment: according to regtransfers, it has gone up in value and is currently worth more than £500,000.

5 – F 1 - £440,625

Perhaps the most evocative reg plate amongst this list, the F 1 plate sold nine years ago for £440,625. It’s currently registered to Afzal Kahn, of Kahn design fame, on a Bugatti Veyron. Before that, it was on a Volvo S80.

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Kahn has expressed that if offered, he would sell the numberplate for over £10 million, but is not officially advertising the numberplate. The price Kahn payed for the plate in 2008 could buy you more than ten top-spec Volvo S90s. 

6 – S 1 - £404,063

Arguably one of the most historic Scottish number plates ever printed, S 1 was issued in 1903 as Edinburgh's first registration plate. Lord Kingsburgh, one of the first people in Scotland to buy a car, became its owner, and it remained in the family for generations before finally changing hands.

It was bought by an anonymous bidder in 2008, who said it would be used on an old Skoda, although the DVLA doesn't show it as currently registered to any car. Either way, it was a shrewd investment - the plate is currently valued at more than £1,000,000.

7 – 1 D - £352,411

Next on the list is 1 D: first purchased in June 2009 for £352,411; in other words, roughly the same price as a Rolls-Royce Phantom Coupé. It’s currently registered to a Bentley Bentayga; a car with a starting price of less than half that of the plate today. 

The plate was originally sold at a DVLA auction, but experts put its value today at £500,000. 

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8 – 1 S - £340,000

1 S was first bought in March 2010, and for a time resided on a car of a similar value to its £340,000 original price tag: a Rolls-Royce Phantom. The estimated worth of the plate has almost doubled in value since, although according to the DVLA it isn't currently registered on any vehicle.

A fleet of nearly 50 Suzuki Celerios could be bought for the same price. 

9 – M 1 - £331,500

M 1 is another which found itself on a Bentley; this time it’s on a Flying Spur. The plate was bought in June 2006, making it one of the earliest entries on our list. It’s for this reason that its value has increased so much; it’s now valued at a cool £1million. 

Its original £331,500 price could buy three Porsche 911 Carrera 4 Coupés.

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10 – GB 1- £325,000

This is one which has almost certainly risen in value post-Brexit, and it’s on a rather fitting car: the Rolls-Royce Phantom. The patriotic numberplate was sold to a private buyer in November 2009 for £325,000, although it’s now worth £500,000. 

You could buy a Lamborghini Aventador Superveloce for a similar wad of cash.

So, in summary, the top ten most expensive numberplates ever sold in the UK are: 

1 - 25 O - £518,480

2 – X 1 - £502,500

3 – G 1 - £500,000

4 - RR 1 - £472,000

5 – F 1 - £440,625

6 – S 1 - £404,063

7 – 1 D - £352,411

8 – 1 S - £340,000

9 – M 1 - £331,500

10 – GB 1- £325,000

Let us know your thoughts below. Which camp are you in? Do you think personalised numberplates are harmless fun or a symbol of frivolous excess?

Disclaimer: While our images are a close representation of the models which feature these numberplates, they are not the owners' cars. 

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Comments
28

9 December 2016
•rolls eyes*

9 December 2016

"it currently resides on, fittingly, a 1961 Ferrari 250 SWB (pictured)"

9 December 2016
There is a side story on G1. Apparently Glasgow Corporation tried to buy it at one point for the Lord Provost's (Mayor) official car and the owner at the time refused. As a result the city issued the number plate G0 which is still used today and I think the only plate of its type in the UK

10 December 2016
I live in Glasgow and regularly see G0 on a black VW Phaeton around the city chambers. Always catches your eye with that plate.

12 December 2016
Nope, there are/were a few other Scottish Lord Provost's cars with a '0' registration. Plus a Lord Mayor of London apparently got LM0.

FMS

19 June 2018
elan2s wrote:

There is a side story on G1. Apparently Glasgow Corporation tried to buy it at one point for the Lord Provost's (Mayor) official car and the owner at the time refused. As a result the city issued the number plate G0 which is still used today and I think the only plate of its type in the UK

 

Recent update...annonymous (by request) donor, has gifted a Rolls Royce Ghost to Glasgow City Council and GO will be transferred to this new car.

FMS

19 June 2018
FMS wrote:

elan2s wrote:

There is a side story on G1. Apparently Glasgow Corporation tried to buy it at one point for the Lord Provost's (Mayor) official car and the owner at the time refused. As a result the city issued the number plate G0 which is still used today and I think the only plate of its type in the UK

 

Recent update...annonymous (by request) donor, has gifted a Rolls Royce Ghost to Glasgow City Council and GO will be transferred to this new car.

 

Most recent update...Boyd Tunnock, of Tunnocks biscuits fame, is the donor and is surprised by the furore, his gift to the city has caused.

9 December 2016
In the States personalized plates are usually easy to get and the owner gets to put exactly what they want on there (subject to size, appropriateness and availability restrictions)and no more than $100 a year more. In Virginia, where I live, it is usually $30 a year and there are a variety of plates to choose from as well to cover favorite universities to even some political groups which are usually a $10 extra charge per year as well. The extravagant cost in the U.K. is outrageous and down to a strict control of supply with no customization available. This it is more proof that you have money to burn rather than any proof of pride/prejudice, etc.

9 December 2016
Does anyone get the whole private plate thing? Why would you want to drive around with your name on your car? Would you wear a name badge in public with your name misspelt? R10GER? PET3R? I don't get it. This and with the whole SUV in town thing.

18 March 2017
[quote=winniethewoo]Does anyone get the whole private plate thing? Why would you want to drive around with your name on your car? Would you wear a name badge in public with your name misspelt? R10GER? PET3R? I don't get it. This and with the whole SUV in town thing.[/quote]I agree entirely with your view here and also what you wrote below.

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