Black Grand Prix & White Grand Prix Plates

Grand Prix Black Plates

Some of my favourite SA plates are the Black Series, Proprietary Right Grand Prix plates – the black plate white numerals series that run from “GP 1” through to “GP 199”.

It was an exciting time back in Adelaide in 1985- not only was the Great Plate Auction undertaken but the Formula One Grand Prix was in town for the first time. To commemorate this event the Grand Prix Office arranged with the Registrar to issue a series of Black Grand Prix plates, which were available both by auction and also directly from the Grand Prix Office itself, originally situated upstairs on the corner of Rundle St and East Terrace, opposite the Stag Hotel.


The first Grand Prix Plate Auctions were quite exclusive, as only invitees to the Historic Garage race car cocktail parties were able to bid on selected plates.


Subsequent to these offerings,  over the first few yearsof the GP groupings of plates were released for both auction (by Kearns Motor Auctions) and sale (via the GP office) , until the 199 “black” GP plates were issued.


Also, it is a little known fact that a limited series of "Proprietary Right"- ie transferrable and tradeable- white GP plates were also offered for sale. These special white Grand Prix Plates are:












Confusingly, in being Proprietary Right plates, the "rights" allocated to these plates were different to the standard  white GP plates (the “GP200-GP9999” series- see below) and can therefore be traded, transferred, bought and sold. They do, however, look exactly the same as a "normal" white GP plate.



Grand Prix White Plates


The plates sequentially after the Black Plate series were non-proprietary right plates and were available direct from the Registrar of Motor Vehicles in a series that ran from “GP200” through to “GP9999”.

These were available from the Registrar of Motor vehicles for a $200 fee, and in my opinion represented great value for an interesting, SA registration plate.


However, all great things invariably come to an end- as the rules have recently changed regarding white GP plates.


BEWARE- if you own a white Grand Prix plate and have reserved it for future use or don’t have it registered on a vehicle,  the Registrar can and likely will “resume” that plate if it has not been on a car for a period of five years. Essentially, “use it or lose it”- if the plate is not used on a car during a five year period it’s use is rescinded and the plate will be cancelled.