• Jan 28th 2008 at 10:01AM
  • 23

The phrase "cost is no object" was redefined last week when an aftermarket tuner dropped close to a cool million on a license plate. Yes, a license plate. The "F1" plate was first registered in the UK 104 years ago, when it was more likely a two-digit coincidence than a vanity plate, and until recently was used on a Volvo S80 owned by the chairman of the Essex County Council. F1 chief Bernie Ecclestone and former F1 driver Eddie Irvine had tried to snatch it up in 2005 at Goodwood, but failed to meet the reserve.

Last week at auction, Afzal Kahn, head of the Kahn Design and Project Kahn aftermarket tuning house, placed the winning bid of £375k, which comes to more than £440k with tax (the equivalent of about $873,000). The price beat the previous record of £331k paid at a Bonhams auction in 2006 for the "M1" plate, but may yet be beat when the UK's oldest registration plate "A1" goes under the hammer in the near future. Kahn will reportedly (and fittingly) put the F1 plate on his custom Mercedes SLR McLaren. How does he feel about blowing that much cash on a license plate? "It's every man's dream to have his perfect car with a number plate like this." Uh, we'll keep dreaming, thanks.

[Source: The Daily Mail via Motor Authority]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 7 Years Ago
      Why not just put a F1 plate on your car and pay the fines afterwards. For 870k he could have paid several hundred fines and whats the chance on getting caught with the fake plate anyway.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Not so much investment as a tax write off!
      • 7 Years Ago

      You all realize he did this so the plate gets stolen instead of the car right? ;)
        • 7 Years Ago
        I live near Khan. Their car park is like something from Cribs lol. I think the SLR had 1K last time I saw it. They've also got a Phantom with 4K. There are some crazy-expensive plates over here. A guy in Liverpool has 1B and B1 on two Veyrons. There's also V1 on a Veyron in London.

        I'm really surprised Khan hasn't got a Veyron yet.

      • 7 Years Ago
      • 7 Years Ago
      It's a frickin' license plate. Of all the ways to "invest" $870,000, a license plate is probably the worst one. Nothing gets produced. No one, save the seller, makes any money. If you want to invest $870K, put it down in some mutual fund where it can actually do some good and get circulated in the economy.

      I'm no socialist by any stretch of the imagination, but I think investments should do at least a little good for more than the investor and the seller.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Tell you what, as soon as the snow melts, I've got a Québec plate RQ33556 from the back of my trailer up for grabs.

      I'm sure the sequence means something to someone.

      Let's start at the bargain basement price of 1,000C$...
      • 7 Years Ago
      Pat, what have you got against custom plates?
      • 7 Years Ago
      That's just a waste of money...novelty? More like kitsch.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Does anyone find it ironic that this is NOT a Mclaren F1?

      McLaren built a car *named* F1, and this plate is on the other, less impressive McLaren. The SLR just doesn't hold a candle to the big Mac, even though it is 15 years old.

      I never really got into F1 racing, and with the bureaucratic crap that I keep reading about, I am not so convinced I am missing a tremendous amount.

      I have no idea why someone would spend such inordinate amounts of money on a piece of plastic that tells the government who you are when you drive around.

      I guess suckers and their money are truly soon parted.
      • 7 Years Ago
      > it will NEVER lose money

      That's not quite true, the plate is only worth what someone else will pay for it.

      The other issue with stumping up this sort of money for the number plate, is that you don't actually own the rights to the plate. If you crash the car and it is an insurance write-off the DVLA (like the DMV in the states) don't have to give you back the number plate.
      • 7 Years Ago
      You telling me people are so limited in common sense that they can't think of a better use/investment of 873K but just to have a license plate. This world is going to h*ll, wearing gasoline shorts!! It's almost sickening.... sorry, just had to rant on this one.
      • 7 Years Ago
      We can't get custom plates in Québec ... thank God.

      Unfortunately, we don't have front plates so people put all sorts of crap up there to make up.
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