Confess it, you have also played license plates sometime in your life in search of entertainment during those long and tedious hours that a car trip implies. I’ve done it too and I’ve had fun seeing which member of my family was the fastest adding up the license plate numbers or who managed to form a meaningful sentence from the letters on it. Surely during this practice you have noticed something: license plates in Spain do not have vowels, but do you know why?
And it is that we have already experienced similar cases with other types of situations, such as the controversial Mitsubishi Pajero or the Hyundai Kona and the meaning of their surname in Galicia. However, vowels are not the only type of letters banned in this registration system, which has been active since September 18, 2000..
Why don’t license plates have vowels?
The main reason why license plates in Spain do not have vowels is due to the possibility of generating bad words. Even so, the current system generates acronyms and sound combinations that are at least peculiar that can also lead to the formation of inappropriate concepts through the consonants that we find.
And it is that for 21 years, specifically since the aforementioned September 18, 2000, cars registered in Spain use license plates with an identifier that combines four numbers, from 0000 to 9999, with 10,000 possible combinations and three letters starting with BBB and ending with ZZZ.
But, what other types of elements or letters are banned on Spanish license plates?
In addition to preventing vowels from being added to license plates, with the entry into force of this system in the year 2000 Other letters and numbers were also eradicated to avoid confusion and give rise to the formation of profanity expressions..
The Ñ and the Q, for example, are banned in the registration code. This is due to the confusion that both letters can generate as they closely resemble the N in the case of the Ñ, and the Q to the letter O and the number zero. In this way, when identifying a vehicle by its license plate it could lead to blunders.
Another case is that of the CH and the LL, which were prohibited in the registration system to prevent the formation of four-character plates, an unfeasible configuration with the current system.. However, when the new registration came into force, the Association of Academies of the Spanish Language had already excluded the CH and the LL from the alphabet, considering these signs as digraphs and not letters.
The curious experiment carried out in Russia with a car with four license plates passing in front of a radar
But, in the end, when determining an enrollment system, it is not only important to avoid the formation of profanity, but also keep in mind that this has its limitations. The first license plate system implemented in 1900 had a limitation of one million cars per province, while the one before the current one registered more than 29 million vehicles. In the same way, contemporary license plate coding is not infinite, and supports up to 80 million registered vehicles.