Whether you are a major car enthusiast or love to change your car as quickly as you change your smartphone, you might be as excited as us for the arrival of the 66 plates to the market. If only we were talking about route 66 (oh how we can dream), no, we’re chatting about the new car registration plates representing cars registered in the second half of 2016. After going on sale on the 17th of May this year, 66 plates are available to purchase from the DVLA at the moment with 66 plate cars being released to the market on the 1st of September – only two weeks to go!
UK Number Plate System
We know everyone might not be aware of how the current number plate system works so we’ll begin by giving you some background. Nearly 17 years ago back in 1999, the UK number plate system underwent some major changes and instead of the car’s age being represented through letters, the system changed to a numeric format. From changing only once a year, the year 2000 saw cars take on the new registration format and began changing twice a year.
Since the year 2000, all current style registration plates are made up of seven characters. The first two letters on a registration plate represent the local memory tag with the first letter representing the region of the car’s origin whilst the second letter represents the local DVLA office where the car was registered. The two numbers which follow represent the age of the vehicle whilst the three letters at the end of the registration plate give the vehicle a unique identity.
Before the millennium, if you car began with the letter ‘L’ or ‘M’ this indicated your car was registered circa 1994-95 however if it began with ‘T’ or ‘V’, these cars would have been registered in 1999 / early 2000 – some of which we still see on the roads today.
Since 2000, if your number plate begins with XX16, this indicates your car was registered during the first half of 2016 (from the beginning of March – end of August) whereas if your registration begins with XX66, this shows your car is registered in the second half of 2016 (September through to February 2017).
New Registration Plates
You might be wondering why people make such a big fuss over registration plates? First of all, the most obvious reason to snapping up a car with a 66 plate is that everyone knows your car is brand new (aside from the shiny, new car look giving it away). However if your name translates well into numeric format, this is another incentive to bag yourself a personalised, current style plate while you still can. If your name happens to be Jonny, you could snap up this plate from the DVLA for a cool £1999 or use their search here to find a 66 plate suited to you.
Just a word of caution, you can’t simply purchase a 66 plate and place it on any vehicle. If you do purchase one, this can only be placed on a vehicle which was registered on, or after the 1st of September 2016. So, if there is a plate you really want but can’t quite afford a new car, you can buy the registration place and retain it until you do eventually buy a car post 2016 (66 plates can be added to cars registered after 2016).
Time To Bag A Bargain
Just a heads up to all the bargain hunters amongst us, both February and August are two of the best months to purchase a car registered in the latter half of the previous year at the cheapest price. Now that 2016 registrations are available on the market, car dealerships will more likely than not have a drive on selling the brand new models in favour of older models however, many showrooms still have older models (from the latter half of the previous year) with very few miles on the clock. So, if you’re looking to be the first owner of a car, late August / early September is the perfect time to bag yourself a 65 or even a 16 plated bargain car.
If you are lucky to get a brand new car or a personalised registration mark from the DVLA, Number 1 Plates have the functionality to build your own plate to match your vehicle. From MINI and Mercedes, to Audi and BMW, build your own road legal, DVLA approved number plates here.