Register Your Car In Spain

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Important information relating to the prcess of registering your car in Spain.

Vehicle Registration Plates In Spain

Vehicle Registration Plates In Spain

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Vehicle registration plates of spain are the compulsory identification tags used to display a vehicle’s registration mark, and have been in existence in Spain since 1900. Most motor vehicles on public roads are required by law to carry them. The body in charge of vehicle registration and numbering is the Dirección General de Tráfico.

The Format Of Vehicle Registration Plates In Spain

Spain currently uses the format L nnnn LLL, where:

  • nnnn is a sequence number from 0000 to 9999.
  • LLL is a “counter” consisting of three letters, which is incremented after the sequence number reaches 9999.
  • The consonants B, C, D, F, F, G, G, H, J, K, L, M, N, P, R, S, T, V, W, X, Y and Z are used for a total of 80 million possible number plates in the system.
  • The plates are white with black lettering, front and back, with a blue stripe on the left containing the 12 stars of the European flag and the country identifier E (for Spain). This stripe is mandatory.

This format for vehicle registration plates of spain was introduced on 18 September 2000 and is used throughout the country, so there is no way of knowing where the vehicle was registered. The “counter” gives an approximate idea of when the vehicle was registered, but is less reliable for determining the age of the vehicle, as imported second-hand vehicles are registered in the same way as new vehicles. In August 2022 the three-letter counter reached the L-series, which started with MBB. At the current rate of about five series per decade, the system will be exhausted around 2040.

The Old System Of Vehicle Registration Plates In Spain

Previously, two systems based on provinces were used. The first, introduced in 1900, consisted of a letter code indicating the province in which the vehicle was registered (the full list of codes is given below), followed by a sequence number of up to six digits (XXX-NNNNNNNN). The codes usually consisted of the first letter or the first two letters of the name of the province or the provincial capital (many provinces are named after their capitals), as laid down in a 1926 regulation. In the early days, some provinces used three-letter codes, but these were abolished after 1926. This system of vehicle registration plates of spain came to an end in October 1971.

The New System Of Vehicle Registration Plates In Spain

The second system was used from 1971 to 2000 and consisted of a provincial code followed by a hyphen and a sequential number (XXX-NNNNNNNNN). The provincial code consisted of one or two letters followed by a number between 1 and 50 indicating the province in alphabetical order. For example: A-1 for Álava , B-8 for Barcelona , M-28 for Madrid , etc. This system of vehicle registration plates of spain also made it possible to know where the vehicle had been registered.

Vehicle registration plates of spain are an important element for identifying vehicles and their origin. In this article we have reviewed the history and operation of the current and previous systems in Spain. We hope you have found it interesting and useful.

Summary Of Vehicle Registration Plates In Spain

Here is an informative and lengthy text about vehicle registration plates in Spain:

  • Registration plates are the compulsory plates used to display a vehicle’s registration mark, and have been in existence in Spain since 1900. Most motor vehicles on public roads are required by law to carry them.
  • The body in charge of vehicle registration and numbering is the Dirección General de Tráfico (DGT).
  • The current system, introduced in 2000, consists of the format L nnnn LLL, where:
  • nnnn is a sequence number from 0000 to 9999,
  • LLL is a “counter” consisting of three letters, which is incremented after the sequence number reaches 9999.
  • The consonants B, C, D, F, F, G, G, H, J, K, L, M, N, P, R, S, T, V, W, X, Y and Z are used for a total of 80 million possible number plates in the system.
  • This system is used on a national level, so there is no way of knowing where the vehicle was registered. The “counter” gives a rough idea of when the vehicle was registered, but is less reliable for determining the age of the vehicle, as imported second-hand vehicles are registered in the same way as new ones.
  • The plates are white with black lettering, front and rear, with a blue stripe on the left containing the 12 stars of the flag of Europe and the country identifier E (for Spain). This stripe is mandatory.
  • Prior to the current system, two earlier systems were used, both based on provinces.
  • The first system, introduced in 1900, consisted of a letter code indicating the province in which the vehicle was registered (the full list of codes is given below), followed by a sequence number of up to six digits (XXX-NNNNNNNNN).
  • The second system, introduced in October 1971 and in force until September 2000, consisted of one or two letters indicating the province (the same as in the first system), followed by a dash and four digits (XX-NNNNNN or X-NNNNNN).

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