In the UK, when did the shape of the REAR number plate change, from square to rectangular ? ?

I own a 1971 K - reg VW campervan. I see other vans, of the same year, some have a SQUARE rear number plate ( usually with a black background and silver letters / numbers ) and some have a RECTANGULAR plate. What is the correct shape for a 1971 vehicle ? Mine was registered August 1st 1971. 

3 Answers

  • 9 months ago
    Favourite answer

    All of the VW minibuses of that period and right up to when production in Europe ceased have exactly the same shape area on the rear to take a number plate.

    Either shape fits. It was purely a matter of choice for the owner or the supplying dealer from new.

    So in terms of originality it’s entirely your choice. Also the black characters on a reflective yellow background were already being very commonly fitted from new on all vehicles although the silver on black plates did not become illegal on newly registered vehicles until 1973. So again, it’s your choice. Bit the highly reflective black on yellow plates are far safer than the earlier silver on black plates; in modern traffic that’s a big safety advantage if the bus has the original pathetically small and dim rear lamps and piddly little lighting reflectors.

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  • May
    Lv 6
    9 months ago

    Either shape is "correct"

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  • Anonymous
    9 months ago

    You can have any shape you want. Rectangular plates look better on low flat cars but older cars use to be high and narrow so a square plate looked better. In 1971 they were black and silver.

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