Man pays £7.3 million for car number plate


A Dubai property developer has hit the headlines after spending a staggering £7.3 million on a car number plate at auction.

In 2014, Ferrari dealer John Collins hit the headlines when he spent £518,000 on the number plate ‘25 O’. To date, this is the record price commanded by the DVLA here in Britain.

We get the distinct impression Balwinder Sahani wouldn’t get out of bed for half a million quid, after spending the an eye-watering 33 million dirhams for the Dubai number plate ‘D5’.

A quick currency conversion reveals that this price equates to around £7.3 million. Having secured the vanity plate, the Dubai property developer is left with the enviable task of deciding which of his six Rolls-Royce cars the plate will adorn.

He reportedly has two more Rolls-Royce models on order…

At the same government auction, Sahani purchased another plate for 1 million dirhams, which joins the ‘O9’ he bought for 25 million dirhams, last year.

Personalised registrations are big business in the United Arab Emirates, where they are seen as status symbols, perhaps more so than the luxury cars upon which they sit. It’s good news for the Dubai economy, with the proceeds of the sale going to fund Dubai’s Road & Transport Authority.

“I believe in giving back,” Sahani told CNNMoney, claiming his purchases are his contribution to the public coffers. “This city has given me a lot.”

Sounds like Sahani is determined to keep giving back, telling Gulf News: “I have collected 10 number plates so far and I am looking forward to having more. It’s a passion. This number [D5] will go to one of my Rolls-Royces.”

As for the UK, the five most expensive number plates are:

  1. ‘25 O’: £518,000
  2. ‘F 1’: £440,000
  3. ‘S 1’: £404,000
  4. ‘1 D’: £352,000
  5. ‘M 1’: £331,000

Not your cup of tea? Don’t worry, the DVLA will sell you a plate for as little as £250. Think of it as ‘giving back’.

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