You may think that a number plate is just something that’s fixed to the front and back of your car. Or you might view a personalised reg as a must-have accessory for your motor. Whichever camp you’re in, there’s no doubting that personalised number plates are hugely popular.
They’re big business too. Since the DVLA began selling reg numbers in 1989, more than £2.3billion has been raised for the Treasury’s coffers. This number’s increasing by higher margins each year, swelled by both a rise in regular personalised plates that won’t break the bank, and extravagant purchases that might make the mind boggle. Here we take a look at some of the world’s most in-demand number plates, and you can decide if they’re worth the outlay or not.
Literally number 1 in every way you can think of. Perhaps unsurprisingly, this single digit number plate is the most expensive registration mark on the planet. Back in 2008 UAE businessman Saeed Abdul Ghaffar Khouri spent more than £7million on acquiring it, before stating that the astronomical fee “is not huge compared to my family’s fortune.” Fair play we say, if you’ve got it, flaunt it.
And what better way for John Collins to flaunt it than by hooking up his Ferrari 250 with this matching number plate. The honour for having Britain’s most expensive plate goes to the owner of a classic Ferrari dealership, who spent more than half a million pounds for his match made in motoring heaven.
Another entry from Britain, and no doubt the envy of plenty of drivers around the world. There’s no doubt that four times world champion F1 driver Lewis Hamilton would love to get his hands on this plate, which belongs to Bradford entrepreneur Afzal Khan. Since buying the reg number for £440,000, it’s been claimed that Mr Khan turned down an offer of £6million for it - who knows, the offer may have come from Hamilton himself.
The number 5 is actually the second most expensive number plate ever sold. It was numero uno for around a year before the actual ‘1’ plate became available, and was bought by another UAE businessman Talal Ali Mohammed Khoury for around £3.5million. Maybe he was feeling giddy on the day, as he also splurged over £800,000 on the number ’55’ at the same auction. Either way, he was definitely feeling charitable, as the proceeds from the auction went towards building a national rehabilitation centre for victims of traffic accidents.
If there’s anything more swanky than being a VIP, it’s being the number 1 VIP. Or to be totally accurate, VIP 1. Not content with investing vast amounts of his cash into Chelsea Football Club, Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich splashed out almost £300,000 to take ownership of the reg number. This particular plate comes with its fair share of history, having made an appearance on the Popemobile when Pope John Paul II visited Ireland in 1979.