The Most Expensive Number Plates In The World
The prices for these number plates are astonishing.
Number plates are a subtle, but integral part of any car. Not only does it provide your car with a unique form of identification, but it also helps the authorities keep track of the number of vehicles on the road.
Most of us wouldn't bat an eyelid at number plates, only taking notice of them in situations such as road accidents or wanting to shame someone online for parking inappropriately. However, to some individuals a number plate is even more valuable than the vehicle it’s registered to, and they are prepared to spend exorbitant sums of money just to obtain the unique plates they desire.
D5 – Dubai, United Arab Emirates
With an absurd abundance of luxury and supercars occupying the roads, it is no surprise that the world’s most expensive number plate also resides here in the United Arab Emirates.
Balwinder Sahni, an Indian Businessman based in Dubai, holds the title with his number plate – D5. Winning the auction with a ridiculous bid of 33 Million AED (Equivalent to £7,324,207), he told the press that ‘D5’, numerologically speaking, represents the number 9, which he considers a lucky number. You might be wondering, what car did he register this plate to. Ford Focus? Of course not, in true flamboyant fashion its currently registered to one of his Rolls Royces.
Balwinder Sahni owns both the 3rd and most expensive number plates in the world. Image courtesy of Cartoq.com.
O9 – Dubai, United Arab Emirates
This is not the first time that Sahni has spent so lavishly on a number plate too. Eagle-eyed viewers would have spotted the other Rolls spotting an ‘O9’ number plate, which coincidentally happens to be the third most expensive number plate in the world. Turns out he won this number plate at a previous auction, with a winning bid of 25 Million AED (£4,363,000).
1 – Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
The United Arab Emirates is no stranger to famous and ridiculously priced number plates. However, arguably its most famous number plate ‘1’, is also one that is shrouded in controversy. In 2016, an Abu Dhabi man scored the plate at auction for a cool 31 Million AED (£5,410,120), making it the 2nd most expensive plate in the world. However, he is now facing jail time for fraud as the cheque he supposedly wrote bounced due to insufficient funds in his bank account. He has also admitted that he had full knowledge of his lack of funds and that he was actually planning to resell the number plate at a profit to earn some quick cash.
Image courtesy of Times Of India.
If I was to only list the top 5 most expensive number plates in the world, the results would all be in the United Arab Emirates. Hence, for the sake of diversity, here are the most expensive number plates in some countries around the world.
28 – Hong Kong
In Cantonese, 28 is quite a popular number as it sounds like the words “easy” and “prosper”, thus this combination of numbers is said to bring about good luck. In 2016, this auspicious plate went for 18.1 Million HKD (£1,616,000). It also holds the number 8 spot for most expensive in the world.
25 0 – United Kingdom
In 2014, a Ferrari dealership owner John Collins paid £400,000 for the number plate ’25 O’, registering it fittingly on his Ferrari 250 SWB. Even though this is the UK's most expensive registered plate, compared to what the car is worth the number plate seems rather cheap.
Truly a fitting number plate on a car. Image courtesy of BenzInsider.
NSW 4 – Australia
The original ‘NSW 4’ number plate set an Australian record after being sold under the hammer for 2.45 Million AUD (£1,337,470). This number plate currently sits at the number 10 spot for most expensive in the world. It is now owned by Peter Tseng, who happens to be a Chinese-Australian wine collector and sex toy magnate. Interesting.
Image courtesy of SydneySpotter.
S 32 H – Singapore
At a public auction in 2016, a vintage number plate with the combination ‘S 32 H’ crossed the auction block and was bought for $335,000 SGD (£186,000), making it the most expensive number plate to be owned in Singapore. One factor that increased its value is that this number plate is actually the 22nd number plate to be registered in the private vehicle market in Singapore.
The only instance in this article that the number plate is more expensive than the car. Image courtesy of The New Paper.
What are some unique and interesting license plates that can be found in your country? Share them in the comments section down below!
August 2nd, 2020
Written By: Sean Loo