The most expensive number plate in the world?
The answer is that the Dubai number plate D 5 is the world's most expensive confirmed sale of a car registration number to date.
The top 35 highest priced private car registrations globally are shown in the following table. Ranking sales that occurred in different currencies at different times is difficult, so we have ranked this table according to the converted price in UK pounds. In each case, conversion is at the exchange rate prevailing at the time the sale occurred.
It is striking to see that, despite the continual breaking of British number plate price records, the UK does not currently appear on our top 30 infographic. Recent sales have pushed the UK's most expensive number, 25 O, below position 30, as may be seen in the text version of the table.
However, the UK market continues to grow and there are signs that top British prices could soon approach the levels seen in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. It is widely believed that the legendary number A 1 would command a price in excess of £1m should it come onto the market and businessman Afzal Kahn, owner of F 1, claims to have turned down an offer of £6m for that registration.
Readers who have encountered other articles claiming to list the world's most expensive plates may notice two conspicuous omissions from the table on this page. Reports that the Qatar number 333355 was sold in 2014 for QR 200m (£35m) have turned out to be spurious. Abdulla Matar Al Mannaei of Emirates Auctions told Regtransfers that the "sale" was in fact a system error, so that entry has been removed from the rankings. Similarly, the reported sale, in November 2016, of an Abu Dhabi number 1 registration for AED 31m (£6.84m) has been removed from the table. The would-be purchaser admitted to writing a cheque that he did not have the funds to cover and was subsequently convicted of fraud.
Full details of some sales are difficult to present clearly due to peculiarities of local licence plate systems and the rather vague nature of some news reports. For example, numbers such as Abu Dhabi's 7 and 11 appear more than once in the table. This is because the same number may be issued in more than one series or category. News reports generally omit reference to the category, announcing only the main number. The situation is similar in Australia where different states may issue the same numbers. The sale at position 12 in the table was reported internationally as NSW 4, whereas many Australian publications referred to it simply as registration number 4.
Highest Prices Paid for Personal Number Plates Worldwide
|#||Plate||Local price||Price (GBP)||Date||Country|
|1||D 5||33m AED||£7,324,207||08/10/2016||Dubai, UAE|
|2||1||52.2m AED||£7,250,000||17/02/2008||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|3||O 9||25m AED||£4,363,000.00||07/07/2015||Dubai, UAE|
|4||5||25.2m AED||£3,500,000||01/02/2007||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|5||7||16.8m AED||£3,000,000||20/02/2010||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|6||7||13.4m AED||£2,958,057||19/11/2016||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|7||9||15.4m AED||£2,153,846||10/05/2008||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|8||2||10m AED||£2,061,850||18/11/2017||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|9||9||10m AED||£1,720,000||01/09/2010||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|10||28||18.1m HKD||£1,616,000.00||02/02/2016||Hong Kong|
|11||7||11.4m AED||£1,583,333||16/02/2008||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|12||18||16.5m HKD||£1,513,372||23/02/2008||Hong Kong|
|13||NSW 4||2.4m AUD||£1,500,000||28/08/2017||New South Wales, Australia|
|14||11||6.1m AED||£1,346,578||19/11/2016||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|15||V||13m HKD||£1,341,589||12/02/2017||Hong Kong|
|16||12||8.9m AED||£1,240,000||2010||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|17||99||6.5m AED||£1,107,325||06/06/2009||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|18||11||8m AED||£1,098,901||12/05/2007||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|19||10||4.5m AED||£993,377||19/11/2016||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|20||22||4.65m AED||£967,741||19/11/2016||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|21||66||4.4m AED||£946,236||19/11/2016||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|22||55||6.5m AED||£892,857||12/05/2007||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|23||9||13m HKD||£832,258||01/06/1994||Hong Kong|
|24||45||5m AED||£686,813||12/05/2007||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|25||16||8.5m HKD||£676,751||01/02/2011||Hong Kong|
|26||AA 10||3.1m AED||£630,080||09/12/2017||Dubai|
|27||13||7.4m HKD||£625,528||28/02/2010||Hong Kong|
|28||26||7m HKD||£591,715||28/02/2010||Hong Kong|
|29||29||7m HKD||£583,333||23/02/2008||Hong Kong|
|30||88||4.2m AED||£576,923||12/05/2007||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|31||19||3.5m AED||£576,492||25/09/2010||Abu Dhabi, UAE|
|32||25 O||£518,480 GBP||£518,480||01/11/2014||UK|
|34||E 15||3.1m AED||£434,782||17/03/2007||Dubai|
|35||NSW 29||745,000 AUD||£428,160||22/05/2017||Australia|
|* Estimated value as of 2018|
See also Most expensive UK number plates.