Well, the links I sent earlier are still valid. The final letter B
indicates the number was issued in 1964. The second and third letters, AR,
indicate that it was issued in the county of Hertfordshire. The D and the 9
are random. The numbers I think tend to be issued sequentially, so a low
number like 9 would suggest it was issued quite early on in the year.
The story seems a little suspect, since MGAs ceased production in July '62,
although it's possible the car sat around unregistered for a year and a half
- maybe everyone was so excited about the MGB that old stock MGAs were hard
to shift. It probably wouldn't have been legal to transfer that number
plate to an older MGA, since that would have made the car appear newer than
it was (although I don't know for sure whether that law was in place in
You can get number plate shops in the UK to make up any number plate you
like, in a variety of styles that include the old-style white-on-black or
silver-on-black. I think there's some rule that says you need to prove you
own a car registered with that number (so you can't just buy a number plate
with someone elses number and have all your speeding fines sent to them!),
but they might waive that restriction if it's being sent to a foreign
Richard & Sammy
On 4/23/08, David F. Darby <email@example.com> wrote:
> Thanks Paul et al.
> There used to be some sites where one could look up when and where number
> plates were initially issued, but they seem to have dried up.
> I found a nice plate at a swap meet the other day: DAR 9B. As it
> approximates my surname it was a must-have. It's stamped aluminum, painted
> black, and looks great on the front of the black Magnette (Z-type). The
> feller I bought it from claims it was imported stateside whilst attached
> an MGA.
> I'm sure it will attract the attention of the Missouri Highway
> but I'll keep the official MO tag under the front seat to try to ward off
> citation. Actually, I've been running without the required front plate for
> the past ten years without drawing the attention of the local gendarmes.
> I might vent here that I think the citizens of this sovereign state should
> be excused from running the current issue of tags as they are not only
> egregiously bad from an aesthetic point of view, but downright ugly as
> home-made sin to boot! They are an embarrassingly wussy, namby-pamby
> bluish hue intergrading into white, with a whimsical font and a cutesy
> zig-zag graphic along the top. It nearly broke my heart when I had to
> the industrial-grade stamped steel plates that had endured for so many
> decades. It's enough to make a fellow want to move off to Kansas.
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