The vehicle registration plates of Cyprus are composed of three letters and three digits (e.g. ABC 123). A simple incremental numbering system is used; numbers run from 1 to 999 per letter sequence (alphabetic), so that, for example, the plate to be issued after MAA 999 would be MAB 1. However, registrants may be allowed to choose a number from available numbers in the extant letter sequence.
The exact permitted dimensions of Cyprus plates were similar to their British counterparts, and until 2004, characters were printed in black and in the same typeface as used on British plates. Plates from 2004 onwards are made of metal; between 1973 and 2004, they were made of plastic.
A new law on vehicle registration plates came into force on 3 June 2013, altering the design. Plates made before that date are white on the front of the vehicle and yellow on the rear, whereas new plates are white both on the front and the rear and, in addition, carry the month and year the vehicle was first registered in any country. Replacing old plates with new ones has been made mandatory for motorcycles, taxis and lorries. Taxi plates are yellow on both sides and rental car plates are red on both sides, but no longer carry the T and Z prefix, respectively.
Up to four numbers followed by the letter V followed by two numbers indicating the year of registration (e.g. 1234V03). After 2004, you cannot register a car as visitor, but visitor cars registered before 2004 can still get road tax.
Public service trucks and buses have beside the registration plate a secondary plate (like the Spanish SP plate). ΦΔΧ - Φορτηγό Δημοσίας Χρήσης (public service truck) for trucks and ΛΔΧ - Λεωφορείο Δημοσίας Χρήσης (public service bus) for buses.
Northern Cyprus civilian number plates follow the old format of Cyprus license plates on 1973–1990. Front plates are white, rear plates are yellow, both bordered in red. Two sizes are available: 15×30 or 11×52 cm. The plates were issued after Northern Cyprus seceded from Cyprus in 1983.
Government vehicles (those belonging to the government and the council) are 3 letters and 3 or 4 numbers long, always beginning with RHA. Polices and Fire Brigade plates follows the format of Government license plates with inversed color.