What do the first two letters on a number plate mean?

What do the first two letters on a number plate mean?

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Regardless of the technical characteristics published in the Mexican Official Standard NOM-001-SCT-2,<Norma-001 /> some states require extra elements to prevent counterfeiting of the plates such as: images printed in invisible ink, which reacts to black light, a reflective paper with aluminum bubbles, bar codes such as base 39, 110 or recently PDF417, rivets with the legend “SCT” and sometimes a floating image.

In the future it will be possible to identify a vehicle simply by passing near an antenna, at pay booths, checkpoints or control points, being able to extract the complete data of the owner, vehicle information such as VIN, make, line, model, etc., as well as to know if it has any infraction or tax debt. This will have benefits for the fight against crime and vehicle control.

What is the license plate of a vehicle?

White, blue, yellow, red, green… Car license plates are as varied as countries and legislations exist in the world. Today we are very used to seeing them on vehicles circulating in cities and on highways, but they were not always there.

When the automobile was invented, there were so few vehicles circulating in the world that it did not seem necessary to identify them by means of license plates. Very very few could afford to buy a car, so knowing who owned that noisy contraption that moved horselessly everywhere was very easy.

Things became more complicated when those cars began to be mass produced, their price became cheaper and those who could afford them began to be much more numerous. How to know who they belonged to, when looking for the person responsible in an accident, for example, if they were not identified in some way? The solution was to find a system that could identify both the vehicle and its owner without any doubt. And so license plates were born.

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Year of vehicle registration by letters

Since then, the registration fee began to rise progressively and at the beginning the procedures were arduous, since until 1907 each vehicle had to have a double license plate, that of the Town Hall with which it could circulate in the municipality and another provided by the Civil Government of each province. Huelva was the province that was the latest to register the first car in 1912.

On the other hand, a solution was sought for the initials of the names of the provinces that could overlap, using only one letter for the province with the largest population and two letters for the smaller ones, for example: ‘A’, for Alicante, versus ‘AL’ for Almería; ‘B’, for Barcelona, versus ‘BA’ for Badajoz or ‘H’ for Huelva, versus ‘HU’, for Huesca, among others.

The exception is in the case of ‘NA’, of Navarra, where the toponym Pamplona did not prevail, and in the Canary Islands, where what prevailed was the name of the two (then) capitals of the archipelago, ‘GC’, of Gran Canaria, and ‘TF’, of Tenerife.

The elimination of the provincial callsign was much celebrated by some and much criticized by others. Although the main advantage was that at last suspicions and historical quarrels between provinces were avoided, which favored, among other things, the sale of second-hand cars in different regions.

Old license plates spain

The license plate is a combination of alphabetical or numerical characters that identifies and individualizes the vehicle with respect to others; they are represented on a metal or plastic plate on which the characters are engraved or affixed in an unalterable manner.

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In most countries, automobiles, as well as other vehicles of a minimum engine displacement, must have one plate with the license plate on the front and another on the rear, although in some places or on some types of vehicles only the rear plate is required.

Exempt from the above format are vehicles of the Diplomatic Corps, Consular Corps, Non-Governmental Organizations, International Mission, Departmental Government and some vehicles of the Police, Armed Forces and Emergency Services.

Some police and fire vehicles have the following format: PNX 123 and the inscription NATIONAL POLICE at the bottom (X referring to the department, e.g.: PNL 456 corresponding to a patrol car).