Vehicle registration plates of Wisconsin

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The U.S. state of Wisconsin first required its residents to register their motor vehicles and display license plates in 1905. Plates are currently issued by the Division of Motor Vehicles of the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (DMV).

Passenger baseplates 1917 to present[edit]

In 1956, the U.S. states and Canadian provinces came to an agreement with the Automobile Manufacturers Association that standardized the size for license plates for vehicles, except those for motorcycles, at six inches in height by twelve inches in width, with standardized mounting holes. The 1955 (dated 1956) issue was the first Wisconsin license plate that complied with these standards.

Image Dates issued Design Slogan Serial format Serials issued Notes
Wisconsin 1917 43521.jpg 1917 White on dark green
Wisconsin 1919 150472.jpg 1919 Yellow on deep green
Wisconsin 1931 29-103D.jpg 1931 Yellow on blue
Wisconsin 1941 4805.jpg 1941 Black on yellow America's Dairyland
Wisconsin 1956 H40-083.jpg 1955 Green on white America's Dairyland
Wisconsin 1959 L17-595.jpg 1959 Green on white America's Dairyland
Wisconsin 1964 L73-349.jpg 1963 Dark blue on white America's Dairyland
Wisconsin 1967 R 669.jpg 1965–67 Embossed white numbers on maroon plate; "WIS" embossed in white block letters in top left corner; month of expiration and "65" embossed in top right corner "AMERICA'S DAIRYLAND" embossed in white block letters centered below numbers A12-345 Letter corresponds to month of expiration
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg 1968–72 Embossed black numbers on yellow plate; "WISCONSIN" embossed in black block letters centered below numbers; month of expiration embossed in bottom left corner; "68" debossed in bottom right corner (usually covered by sticker) "AMERICA'S DAIRYLAND" embossed in black block letters centered above numbers A12-345
AA 1234
First letter corresponds to month of expiration
Wisconsin 1976 C46-797.jpg 1973–79 Embossed red numbers on white plate; "WISCONSIN" embossed in red block letters centered below numbers; month of expiration embossed in bottom left corner; "73" debossed in bottom right corner (usually covered by sticker) "AMERICA'S DAIRYLAND" embossed in red block letters centered above numbers A12-345
AA 1234
First letter corresponds to month of expiration
Wisconsin 1993 FF 2325.jpg 1980–86 As 1968–72 base, but with "80" debossed in bottom right corner "AMERICA'S DAIRYLAND" as on 1968–72 base A12-345
AA 1234
First letter corresponds to month of expiration
1986 Wisconsin License Plate.jpg July
1986 – March
1987
Embossed dark blue numbers on white plate; "WISCONSIN" screened in dark blue italic block letters at top left and graphics screened at top right featuring a sailboat and sunset, flying geese, and a farm scene; green and dark blue lines separating state name and graphics from numbers "America's Dairyland" screened in dark blue italic block letters centered below numbers ABC-123 AAA-101 to
AZZ-999
Recalled starting in August 1993 and replaced with plates with red numbers (below).
WI 1987.jpg March
1987 – December 1994
As above, but with red numbers BAA-101 to NMD-999 Numbers changed from dark blue to red in response to concerns of confusion with Illinois plates of the time.
1997 Wisconsin License Plate.jpg December 1994 – June
2000
NME-101 to approximately WRZ-999 Narrower dies.
2007 Wisconsin License Plate.jpg June
2000 – present
As above, but with black numbers, state name in larger red letters, graphics revised and green line removed As above, but in taller red letters 123-ABC 101-AAA to
999-XRW (as of May 15, 2015)
Baseplate design updated.

Optional types[edit]

Image Type Dates issued Design Slogan Serial format Serials issued Notes
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg Amateur Radio ? to present Same design as standard passenger plate, but with "Amateur Radio" legend. various various
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg Children's Trust Fund ? to present Red on white with multicolored image of child at left. Celebrate Children 12345K 10001K to present
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg Sesquicentennial of Wisconsin's statehood 1997 – January 1, 1999, with remakes made until August 1, 2008[1] Embossed red numbers on lake scene. 1848 Sesquicentennial 1998 12345T 10001T to 99999T Awarded "Plate of the Year" for best new optional license plate of 1997 by the Automobile License Plate Collectors Association, the first and, to date, only time Wisconsin has been so honored. Co-recipient with Manitoba.
A1234T A1001T to Z9999T
AB123T AA101T to DW999T

Non-passenger types[edit]

Image Type Dates issued Design Slogan Serial format Serials issued Notes
Wisconsin 2000 Bus 8036 B.jpg Bus 2004 – present As current passenger base, but with embossed black "BUS" in place of slogan none 1234B
12345B
1001B to present
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg Disabled person ? to 2012 As current passenger base, but with embossed black wheelchair at right America's Dairyland 12345D 10001D to 99999D
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg 2012 – present 12345D/S 10001D/S to present
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg Farm 1994–2004 As 1987-2000 passenger base, but with embossed red "FARM" in place of slogan none 1234F
12345F
123456F
1001F to approximately 130000F All Farm plates expire at the end of February in even-numbered years. Narrower dies introduced 2001 when 100000F was reached.
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg 2004–8 As current passenger base, but with red numbers, plus embossed red "FARM" in place of slogan 123456F 130001F to approximately 162000F
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg 2008 – present As current passenger base, but with embossed black "FARM" in place of slogan, plus embossed black "FEB" in bottom left corner 200001F to present
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg Motorcycle 1992–2003 Embossed green numbers on white plate; "WIS" and "APR" embossed in green block letters in bottom left and bottom right corners respectively; year sticker at bottom middle none 12345 (variable number of digits) 1 to 99999 All motorcycle plates expire on April 30 in even-numbered years.[2]
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg A1234 E101 to
Z9999, then A101 to
D9999
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg AB123 AA101 to
KU999
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg April 2003[3]– present Embossed black numbers on white plate; "WISCONSIN" embossed in black block letters above numbers; "APR" embossed in same letters in bottom left corner; year sticker in bottom right corner none AB 123 KV 101 to
ZZ 999
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg 1234 A 1001 A to
9999 Z
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg 123 AB 101 AA to present
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg Trailer ? to present As current passenger base, but with embossed black "TRAILER" in place of slogan none 1234 Z/A
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg Truck 2000–4 As current passenger base, but with embossed black "TRUCK" in place of slogan, plus sticker for weight class (A, B or C) at far left none 123456 100001 to 999999 May be personalized. Serials AW1001 through DF9999 skipped to avoid confusion with Temporary plates.
Blank License Plate Shape.jpg 2004 – present AB1234 AA1001 to AV9999; DG1001 to present

References[edit]

  1. ^ Wisconsin DMV
  2. ^ "Motorcycle and moped license plates". Wisconsin DMV. Retrieved December 10, 2014. 
  3. ^ "Wisconsin's new motorcycle plate". LicensePlates.cc. Retrieved December 10, 2014. 

External links[edit]