• Mar 26, 2009
The trade in personalized license plates in the UK can be big business -- the most coveted ones aren't given away, they are auctioned off at country clubs and manor houses. And in spite of a thing called "the recession" the record price paid for a specialty plate in the UK has just been broken, with a Lebanese property developer paying £352,411 ($513,047 USD) to own "1 D." The actual winning bid was £285,000 ($414,893 USD), to which fees and taxes were added.

And this year will see four more auctions hosted, with the most important items on the block the initial run of O-series plates, from "3 O" to "6 O." The first, "1 O," was sold for £210,242 ($306,063 USD) in January. It is said that investors and businessmen are buying the plates now as investments. Oh, and that half-million-dollar plate will be going on a Bentley, and even with the recent price increases, the most expensive Bentley runs £245,000 ($356,865 USD). Let's hope that at these prices, the new owners are buying locking hardware. Check out the press release after the jump.

[Source: DVLA]

PRESS RELEASE

25 March, 2009
PRESTIGIOUS REGISTRATION SMASHES DVLA RECORD

The much sought-after personalised registration 1 D has sold for a record amount at auction.

Lebanese property developer Nabil Bishara paid a staggering £352,411 for the prestigious plate at the DVLA Personalised Registrations auction in Warwickshire this afternoon.

The sum smashed the DVLA's previous record of £254,000 fetched by the registration 51 NGH in 2006.

Mr Bishara will now put the notable number on his wife's Bentley as a surprise present.

The registration was always regarded as one of the most desirable in the land and was expected to be the star lot in this week's auction at Ardencote Manor Hotel.

But DVLA bosses were staggered when furious bidding in the room and on the phone and internet saw the total soar. Mr Bishara finally triumphed though, with his winning bid of £285,000 rising to £352,411 with fees and VAT.

Damian Lawson, DVLA Personalised Registrations' Marketing Manager, said: "We always expected interest in this registration to be among the highest we've ever had and the pre-auction bids certainly backed that up.

"But we were still amazed when the bidding went as high as it did and we are absolutely over the moon with the final result."

A number of other desirable registrations are still to go up for sale at the auction which continues until Friday. This includes 2 0, which is also expected to fetch a high price when it goes under the hammer on Friday morning.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 36 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      If I saw that douche driving around I would be the first to add "10T" to the end of that license plate.
      • 5 Years Ago
      What a douche....spend that money to help a kid with cancer or something.
      • 5 Years Ago
      We STILL don't have an answer as to WHY an apparently meaningless plate would be worth so much simply because it is so short...
      • 5 Years Ago
      "A fool and his money are soon parted."
        • 5 Years Ago
        Better yet...

        "A fool and his money are soon partying."
      • 5 Years Ago
      Do they own it for life? Never having to renew it? Because other than that I don't see a point...
        • 5 Years Ago
        Well then it might seem worth it then.
        • 5 Years Ago
        In the UK, a car's regular registration plate stays with it for the duration of its life. You can opt to buy a cherished plate - like the one in the pic - which is yours and you put on whichever vehicle you buy.
        • 5 Years Ago
        More or less, they transfer the reg from car to car
      tpfilm
      • 5 Years Ago
      I agree, his money. He can spend it how he wants. For those saying tax him: he bought the tag from the DMV not a private party. Plus, he got hit with a $100k fee and tax.
      Finally, to the guy who posted about this being another sign of Bush problems: this happened in England. Across the ocean from the USA. Not any part of the USA. An entirely seperate country.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Wow, almost $100k in taxes and fees?!
      • 5 Years Ago
      1D... 1D... One dude? 1 down? ID?

      I don't get it.

      On 5th gear they auctioned a "1 HRH" plate for 113k pounds. Why bother with these dumb vanity plates?
        • 5 Years Ago
        He should of gone with 8D

        8D should let the world he's all head and no shaft.
        • 5 Years Ago
        It could be a number of things ... 1 and the initial of his name, 1 and the first initial of his favourite football club, or he may be into coin collecting - in which case 1"D" would be very significant.

        In general, the fewer the number of characters on British cherished plates, the more valuable they become. Plates with just two characters can easily run into staggering prices, as this one has done.
        • 5 Years Ago
        HRH stands for "his royal highness" and I think it's pretty lame to have that on your car if you're not actually the queen/king. I mean it's like if I had USPREZ on my car. Dumb.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I have a vanity plate on one car which I will be selling shortly, then discarding of the plates. My problem with it is it takes even an ordinary car and makes people remember it. No biggie but I flip people off and tailgate a lot, so its not working for me ;)
        • 5 Years Ago

        1 Douche-bag
      • 5 Years Ago
      Recession? What Recession?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Greater divide between rich and poor during Bush years? Naw, can't be right... more rich people means the free market is working!

        Oh, and 1D? 1st Dick? I can understand #1 or something, but this is just stupid.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Rogue_G

        I think it means One Developer!

        But your definition is more fitting!

        I can see if you own a Reventon or something and have plate that says "BADASS" or even "FNCOOL" or "BYE" because in my opinion, if you own the car and worked for it and have a plate like that people will say "Damn right that is FN COOL, BADASS and roast em up! It's a brotherhood! Even us that don't have one or never will we all say HELL YEAH!

        But to be a rich dick head that knows dick about cars, buys an expensive one just because they think they're shizat is iceceam and THEN puts a plate on it that makes him feel cool; well it just makes me want to see someone ding his door with a 1976 Lincoln that has a plate that reads "POMOFO" and a bumper sticker that says "This Car Climbed Mount Washington"

        That's just my spin on things!
        • 5 Years Ago
        I think the other letters should bee; 10T




        That makes his plate say; ID10T
      • 5 Years Ago
      Maybe he can buy me a car.
      • 5 Years Ago
      if that's not a reason to increase taxes on these people who really don't know what to do with their money...
        • 5 Years Ago
        What part of "their money" don't you understand?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Get in the line.
        • 5 Years Ago
        jb - I don't know you but I loath you.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Not that I encourage this but why are you people insulting a guy that just want to spend his money on something he likes... Sure its a lot of money but why do any of you care, not like he is spending your money... unless one of you lent him some, then none of what I've written applies.

      Oh... how much do you think "B2" is worth? I've seen an Audi TT parked on my street with that one.
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