Skip to content
Home » Are 3D and 4D number plates legal in the UK?

Are 3D and 4D number plates legal in the UK?

While the rules regarding the legality of plates with numbers in UK are extremely strict and the regulations are being updated 3D and 4D plates designs are available to purchase, which means that many motorists are wondering whether they’re legal.

Drivers may choose to use unusual fonts or effects , giving an impression of raised lettering They are also known by the trade name of “3D” as well as “3D effects” numeral plates. Some use actual raised letters and are available with “3D gel” or “4D” varieties.

The rules for number plates were changed in September 2021. This means that all number plates that feature an effect of 3D are prohibited until that date, but there are some exceptions to the regulations.

Nobody wants to be stopped by the police for a violation of rules in this respect Let’s have an in-depth look at whether 3D or number plates with 4D can be legally used in the UK.

Regulations apply to UK number plates

After changes to the law regarding UK plate numbers in September 2021 the regulations now state that all plates have to:

can be constructed from reflective materials
show black characters against backdrop of white (front plate)
show black characters set against the background of yellow (rear plate)
Do not have a background design
Be identified to identify who was the person who supplied the number plate
Be identified with be marked with a British Standard number — this is ‘BS AU145e for plates installed after September 1, 2021.

The characters themselves should not be removed or reflective and should they be installed on or after September 1st, 2021 the color must be one consistent shade of black.

The most current plate manufacturing standard that will be that was introduced in 2021 is designed to ensure that the plates are in good working order over a long period of exposure to roads and elements.

Since these words 3D, 3D gel plates and 4D are frequently confused It is important to define what’s legal and what’s not.

Number plates with characters that are that are rendered using an effect font that is 3D in order to appear as the numbers and letters that protrude from on the outside of the plate are not permitted on cars that are installed after September 1st 2021.

Beware: certain websites could offer to sell one for your car , even although it’s illegal to attach it to your car in the present. The DVLA regulations are simple, saying:

“The characters should not be transparent or removable. If your plates were put in place on or after September 1, 2021, the plates must be one color that is black.”

What is 3D Gel Number Plates?

Number plates that have raised polyurethane characters that are glued on an acrylic background are often referred to by the name of “3D gel” plates. The shiny appearance and curved surface of the letters gives the illusion that it’s made of gel.

If the characters raised are uniformly black in color and the numberplate is in compliance with those of the BS AU 145e legal standards 3D-printed number plates are legally legal.

What is different what’s the difference between 3D or 4D numbers?

According to the number plates makers, the primary distinction in 3D plate and gel is the fact that the former utilize laser-cut acrylic letters attached on an acrylic back creating a clearer, more defined letters.

It’s important to note that 4D number plates may include characters that have one of of different levels.

Do 4D plates have legal status for use in UK?

Yes. If the plate is in compliance with all other BS AU 145e specifications, like being made of reflective material that has black, solid-black letters that do not reflect, and having the name of the supplier, and not featuring any background patterns or raised lettering, then 4D plates featuring raised letters are legal.

What are the penalties for driving a vehicle with a number plate illegally for illegal number plates in the UK?

It’s crucial to ensure the number plate you have is legal and legally compliant. In the ideal scenario an unlicensed number plate will result in you failing an MOT. In the worst scenario should you be caught by the police, you could face the possibility of a substantial fine, ranging from PS100 to PS1,000.