New Number Plate Rules for 2021
The DVLA is introducing new legislation for the UK’s number plates from next year. The new plates will have improved durability and enhanced compatibility with automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) cameras. There will also be changes with regard to 3D-effect number plates and traditional black and silver plates.
What’s New for Number Plates
The British Standards Institute (BSI) has updated the technical standards for number plates in the UK. The plates have undergone testing for reflectivity, vibration, impact, thermal and weathering effects, solvent-resistance, bending, and more. As a result, the plates will be more durable and compatible with on-road ANPR cameras.
Additionally, different shades of black lettering that create a 3D effect or highlighting will no longer be allowed. The letters and numbers will have to be only a single shade of black. Raised lettering for 3D and 4D effects will also be banned. The DVLA says,
“The agency has not seen any evidence to show that number plates displaying raised plastic, acrylic or Perspex lettering (3D/4D plates) are able to meet the requirements of either the current or new the British Standard.”
The new plates will be available from 1st January 2021 and will become mandatory from 1st September 2021.
New Eligibility for Black and Silver Number Plates
From 1st January 2021, only vehicles built before 1st January 1980 will be eligible to display the black and silver number plates (silver, white or grey characters on a black plate). These traditional plates add a touch of class to classic cars, especially when you have a private or non-date specific registration number. You must apply to the DVLA for the plates and your vehicle must be registered in the ‘historic vehicles’ tax class.
As of 8th December 2020, drivers of all-electric and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles can display number plates with a green flash on the left-hand side. The new green plates will enable drivers to take advantage of money-saving benefits for zero-emissions vehicles such as cheaper parking and free entry into congestion charge zones. Hybrid and plug-in hybrid vehicles are not eligible.
From 1st January 2021, when Britain finally leaves the European Union, UK registered vehicles can no longer be fitted with number plates displaying the GB EU flag. Drivers of vehicles that already have the GB EU symbol won’t have to change them, but they will need to display an oval GB sticker when driving in Europe.
Private Number Plates
These changes in legislation will apply to personalised number plates. Registered number plate suppliers, such as CarReg, must ensure that the plates conform to the required legal standard. The good news is that, at the moment, you won’t have to replace your cherished number plates if they are in the above categories.
If you don’t yet have one, search CarReg’s huge database of private number plates held in stock. As a long-established and trusted supplier, CarReg offers a simple and secure way of buying your plates.