Car showroom pic from Simply Registrations release
Will the introduction of the "13" plate produce the usual sales bounce?
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Car showroom pic from Simply Registrations release
Will the introduction of the “13” plate produce the usual sales bounce – or will business car motorists be put off by the unlucky 13 connotation?

IT’S an issue that’s been looming for some time – how to manage the scheduled introduction of the 13 number plate series for the six-month period starting on 1 March 2013 in the face of fear and doubt from superstitious business car buyers.

Various options had been discussed in the industry – for example, allowing motorists to continue to opt for the current “62” plate if they preferred.

13 has quite a high ‘Scrabble score’ in terms of putting together interesting number plate combinations

But now personalised number plate specialist Simply Registrations is reporting that the DVLA has confirmed that the 13 number plate change will be implemented in the normal way.

Tax and cost conscious business motorists, of course, are mainly going to be swayed by the hard numbers rather than superstition, but may still be affected by the issues surrounding 13 registrations.

If some future second-hand car-buyers shun vehicles with “unlucky” plates, for example, that could affect residual values (the value of the car on the used car market when you sell it on), and therefore lifetime cost of ownership.

On the other hand, in the arcane world of “plate speak”, 13 has quite a high “Scrabble score” in terms of putting together interesting number plate combinations because of its resemblance to the letter “B”.

As James Saperia from Simply Registrations points out: “While some people might avoid the 13 number plates, for others the number 13 could be just what they’ve been waiting for. Lots of options are opened up with combinations such as AL13 ERT, RO13 ERT and SU13 ARU all becoming available.”

That could include plenty of companies looking for plates that could help promote their businesses. How much might Michelin or Pirelli pay for RU 13 BER for example?

Any business car manager thinking of going down that road need to start reserving the best combinations as soon as possible – the DVLA opened advance sales of 13 number plate combinations on 04 December.

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