Minnesota License Plates

As with Idaho, the introduction of flats has changed the registration characters from blue to black. The state map graphic separating the numbers and letters is still blue. The font being used closely matches the dies from the embossed plates.

Rob Wood reports passenger plates have JAN screened, but other months use a sticker placed over it. Guy Peterson reports a white month sticker with blue lettering. Nick Jankovich advises that some of the new B series plates were issued with the blue on white month stickers, while the A series plates continued to use the original white on blue. is now appearing in place of the regular state name.


11 - black on red

12 - black on yellow

13 - black on blue

14 - black on white

15 - black on green

16 - black on red

Standard Passenger Plates

Passenger new

KTK 119
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The letters I, O, and Q are not used. O and Q were used at one time, but not recently.

Standard plates are now flat and have reverted to a 000-AAA pattern. The B series appeared before the A series because B series plates were sent to registrants who initiated orders through the mail and over the Internet. The A series began to appear for over the counter sales as each office ran out of embossed plates. Our thanks to Jeremy DeMai for this information!

Low reverse series - 004 AAA 2011-03-10 Nick Jankovich

B series high - 093-BZX

After the A series was exhausted, the C series began for over the counter sales, then the D and E series were used. The F and S series were skipped.

In the previous alpha-numeric format, upon reaching PGR 999, the PGS series was skipped, so the next series started at PGT 001. From then on, the letter S was not used in any position. According to the state, this was because their telephone voice activation system was having difficulty understanding when the letter S was spoken over the phone. The state initially skipped the entire S series and went from RZZ 999 to TAA 001. After VZZ 999 the W series was skipped and went to XAA 001. The reason for this is because they were concerned that the W series would look too much like the DUI plates (locally called "W"hiskey plates). Whiskey plates use a WA0000 format, and they always start with W. After XZZ 999 was reached, the state apparently fixed the problem with their telephone system, and jumped back to the S series. It is unclear if the S was used in the second or third positions prior to this. The Y series was skipped because the state thought they would look too much like truck plates. Truck plates have a Y/A A0000 format, and the top letter of the stack is always Y. Apparently, the Z series was made, but the DMV isn't going to issue them. Management wants to keep them for testing, whatever that means.

Jeff Nelson previously reported that Minnesota seems to have discontinued use of S and F with the switch to flat plates in 2008. Recently, those letters have appeared in the second and third position on K-series plates, but he has not noticed them on any other series, including the L- and M-series that followed K. Now we have a report that the LFA series was issued. To summarize, the only Fs and Ss that he has seen on flat plates are as follows: KF- KS- K-F K-S LFA

Jay Maynard reports 170 LFJ, so others have been issued. Jay has also seen series with LFD, LFF, LFS, LFU, and LFX, so it is possible that all of the LF series was issued.

He also reports 630 LSC. It appears that all of the LFx and LSx series was issued. F and S have not been seen in the third position, only the second, with the exception of LFF and LFS.

Minnesota is on a 7 year replacement cycle, so plates must be replaced upon reaching 7 years of age. Therefore, the lowest alpha-numeric plates still in use are in the Mxx series. The current low for Pass. plates is BDL-830 reported by Nick Jankovich on 2011-08-15.

The M series is beginning to appear, but over the counter issues have just started in the L series. Speculation is that the M series is being used for mailouts, similar to what was done in 2009 with the A and B series.

M series high: 231 MZC

L series high: 089 LZU

Jay Maynard reports the MMG series being issued over the counter in Martin Co. in Jan. 2014, so they could be back filling after running out of L series.

Nick Jankovich reports something new for MN. It appears they are taking up the practice West Virginia has been using of screening the "sticker" for the first year of use. The latest high has the year "14" screened in the lower right. Although MN has been screening the month on new plates for a while, this is the first sighting of a screened year. The lowest screened year plate sighted was in the LBx series. Andrew Osborne reports the LAx used year stickers. LBC was screened.

Michael Belz - 31 May ’23

Passenger (mail-out)

PFR 612
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The "M" series is used for plates that are mailed out from the central office, as opposed to those that are picked up at local offices.

Jay Maynard - 26 Jan ’23

Non-passenger Plates

Apportioned new

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Flat, weight sticker on right.

Started at PAK0000.

Michael Belz - 31 May ’23

Apportioned (PRP)

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Started at PRY0000. After reaching PRZ9999, the series rolled over to 0000PRA.

Chris Martin - 13 Jun ’19


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Flat, graphic

Rob Wood reports that Metro Transit buses do not have license plates.

Michael Belz - 3 Oct ’22

Classic Car

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Jay Maynard provides us with the description of a Classic Car: Any motor vehicle manufactured between and including the years 1925 and 1948, and designated by the commissioner as a classic car because of its fine design, high engineering standards, and superior workmanship, and owned and operated solely as a collector's item. The law includes a list of cars that are considered classics.

Andrew Turnbull - 30 Dec ’18

Classic Motorcycle

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White background, black serial with "classic motorcycle" on the bottom.

Guy Peterson - 7 Aug ’11


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This series started in 1974 at 600-000 and went through the 700-000 range. Now it is starting over in the 300-000 range to prevent duplication with Tax Exempt plates in the 800-000 to 900-000 range.

The new flat version does not have a hyphen between the numbers.

Jay Maynard reports a low of 600-038 in the original series.

Kyle Wasson - 1 Dec ’22


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D has shifted from the front to the end.

Flat, all white with black numerals. Also, a small black border around the edge. D99999 was reached, numbers restarted at D00001.

Note: Our high for Dealer jumped from D 05211 to D 55318, so there may be a difference in the series, possibly starting at the 50000 break, but this is just a guess. Now the new high in the pre-jump series is D05999 reported by Jay Maynard on 2013-11-20. Jay also reports D 10249 on 2013-12-05.

Kyle Wasson - 4 Oct ’22

Dealer In Transit

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Series started out with an IT prefix, but has now started over with IT as the suffix.

Kyle Wasson - 15 Feb ’19


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Handicapped symbol is embossed to the left of the numbers. Letters are no longer stacked on the new flat plates.

Jay Maynard - 20 Sep ’19

Farm Trailer

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Now a graphic flat plate with "farm trailer' on the bottom.

Nick Jankovich - 8 Jul ’14

Farm Truck

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Farm plates are now flat with graphics. Gone is the green serial. "Farm Truck" on the bottom.

Jay Maynard - 20 Jul ’22


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Fleet plates are now flat on the graphic base and are used by companies such as Qwest, Comcast, UPS, and several other large companies. Some nnn FLF fleet (embossed) registration plates from several years ago may still be in circulation.

Nick Jankovich reports a new Fleet issue using the FLAnnnn format. The plate he saw was on a trailer, so it is not known yet if it was a Fleet Trailer plate, or just a standard Fleet plate in the new format. It was being towed by a truck with the older embossed Fleet plates in the ABnnnn format.

The current high was on a trailer again, being pulled by a truck with a Truck plate, an older YAYxxxx embossed plate. The plate said "Fleet Reg" which is also what the other version - ABxxxx - had at the bottom of the plate as well.

AB series high: AB9441 2015-11-18 Nick Jankovich

Jay Maynard - 8 Aug ’18


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Jay Maynard - 16 Jun ’18


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Flat, graphic

Nick Jankovich - 30 Aug ’13


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New style flat graphic plate. Lake and trees on top. "Motorcycle" on bottom. Month (always Feb.) screened in blue. Alpha suffix is no longer stacked.

Michael Belz - 2 Oct ’21


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Originally embossed, now flat.

Andrew Turnbull - 30 Dec ’18

Recreational Trailer

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Now flat, non stacked prefix with "Recreational Trailer" on the bottom.

Progressed from the RU series to RW.

Jay Maynard - 3 Jun ’22

Recreational Vehicle

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Jay Maynard - 12 Jun ’22

School Bus

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Flat, new graphic design

Jay Maynard - 26 Apr ’21


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Used to be in the 1234 S/T A format, with S/T stacked. Now unstacked, all in one line the same size.

Martin Houle - 2 May ’23

Special Registration

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Black on white, "Minnesota" on top, "10,000 Lakes" on bottom.

Special Registration Plates (WX, Impounded, or "Whiskey" Plates)

These plates are issued to allow a licensed driver to operate a motor vehicle when the original license plates have been impounded by court order or through administrative action.

Nick Jankovich has observed that this type appears to be going backwards. Both the WJ and WK series are flat, but the earlier WL and WM series were embossed. The WH series followed, then WG and WE, WD, WB, and now WA. WC is used for Motorcycle.

There is now a Motorcycle version of this plate with the same look as the automobile plates, white background with black serial, no graphics.

Motorcycle: WC0983

Jay Maynard - 30 Aug ’19

State Vehicle

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Rob Wood advises that there is no high to report because certain series are allocated to certain agencies. ET is allocated to MnDOT, for example.

Rob Wood - 18 Jun ’11

Street Rod

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Jay Maynard - 19 Aug ’19

Tax Exempt

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Same flat style as the new Dealers, including the thin border.

Martin Houle - 1 May ’22


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Valid for 31 days.

Chris Scott - 1 Nov ’22


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Nick Jankovich also reports 1911CLT, which must be a different type of Trailer plate, but we don't know the difference yet.

Willie C. Brock, Jr. - 24 Oct ’15


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Same flat style as the new Dealers, including the thin border.

Also known as "Drive Away In-Transit"

DRW was used as a prefix first, but is now a suffix.

Eric Laberge - 20 Jul ’20


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Flat plate on graphic base. Still has weight sticker but no stacked characters. Previous type was non-graphic embossed with stacked letters.

Y/B Annnn followed Y/A Z9999 on the previous type.

Minnesota has a non-commercial Y class (registered by weight) for one-ton pickup trucks registered at a gross weight of 10,000, 12,000, or 15,000 pounds, exclusively for personal use. We think it is the YNA series.

YNA series high: YNA5818 2015-09-27 Jay Maynard

Here is a unique type...Commercial Concrete Pumper and Street Sweeper. This plate is flat and according to the DMV site - "The plate for vehicles registered under this subdivision is a distinctive powder blue." High: YZA0375

Jay Maynard - 1 Mar ’23

Van Pool

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Now on the flat graphic base.

Jay Maynard - 27 Apr ’23

Volunteer Ambulance

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Nick Jankovich - 2 Nov ’11

Specialty Plates


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Several schools are using this series in the same format and letter blocks. So far, St. Olaf College, Bemidji State University, and St. Cloud State University have been spotted in this type.

The University of Minnesota has its own format and series.

Hap Huber - 2 Dec ’15

Critical Habitat - Chickadee

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Guy Peterson photographed 4LN 001 on this type, but it is unknown why it was issued since the rest are in the A- series.

Handicapped: 18ZJ 2012-09-05 Nick Jankovich

Martin Houle - 31 Jul ’22

Critical Habitat - Deer

6CK 921
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This is the latest version with a new numbering format.

An interim issue of Critical Habitat deer was flat and changed to a 123JA format.

Guy Peterson reports an old style flat Deer plate - 1AC 627. The low he has seen on the previous flat version was NZ911, and a high flat of 350JA.

Older Critical Habitat deer plates appear in the A, D, G, and N series (AA 123 format) in the old embossed format with the deer on the left side. Other specialty plates appear in the 2 letter/3 number format. The B series is used on specialty plates such as Veteran, Firefighters, and other service-oriented plates. Jeremy DeMai reports that the Z series is starting to appear on some Veteran plates, so it is possible that the B series has been exhausted and the Z series is now being used for specialty plates of that type. The C and U series were used on University plates. The E series was skipped, probably because it is used on exempt plates. Exempt plates are used in the 2 letter/4 number format, so there is a possibility that the E series could still appear on special plates in the 2 letter/3number format. The H series was used for disabled plates, but only with a stacked suffix. It is unknown why the F series has not been used, but probably due to avoid potentially offensive combinations.

Handicapped high: 212ZK 2015-06-22 Hap Huber

Jay Maynard - 25 Feb ’19

Critical Habitat - Fishermen

3CM 603
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Handicapped high: 01ZG

Jay Maynard - 17 May ’19

Critical Habitat - Ladyslipper

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Handicapped high: 28ZH

Jay Maynard - 28 Feb ’19

Critical Habitat - Loon

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Critical Habitat loon plates are flat and have appeared in the J, K, L, M, P, R, T, and V series in the screened format with the loon on the left side on the previous base. The S series was skipped. New Loon plates are in the 1AB234 format.

Handicapped high: ZY11

Eric Bryden - 26 Mar ’22

Critical Habitat - Moose

8ND 233
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This is a new type that has not been seen on the road yet.

Danny K. - 31 Oct ’20

Critical Habitat - Pheasant

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Jay Maynard - 27 Aug ’19


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The red Minnesota firefighters' crest is on the plate, to the left of the plate number. Professional and Volunteer Firefigters have the same plates.

Series has transitioned from xxxMx to xxxTx.

Firefighter - Truck:: FF359 2015-06-29 Nick Jankovich

Jay Maynard - 4 Jun ’18

Gold Star

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Parents with children killed in action

Jay Maynard - 5 Feb ’22

National Guard

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"Always Ready" at bottom center.

Nick reports ZX484 on a new flat plate, which could be a number from a previous style.

Jay Maynard - 13 May ’15

Play Golf

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Graphic structure is similar to the critical habitat plates.

Jay Maynard - 24 Sep ’18

Remembering Victims of Impaired Drivers

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Nick Jankovich - 1 Oct ’15

Retired FireFighter

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From Jay Maynard:

Issued to owners of passenger vehicles, one-ton trucks, motorcycles, and RVs who served 10 years or more and left the fire service in good standing. "Retired FireFighter" (yes, with the extra capital F) across the bottom, special emblem (different from the Firefighter plate Maltese cross) on the left. Authorized in May 2014.

Jay Maynard - 1 May ’18

Support Our Troops

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The B series seems to be a newly issued plate and it has the revised design with the red stripe in the center removed for better visibility, but it is unknown why B series was being issued out of order unless some existing plates were being replaced with the newer design.

The C series was skipped originally and the D series features a slight revision in the design that was supposed to make the plates easier to read, but word is that it didn't help much. Now the E series is being issued.

Jeff Nelson reports that a second revision of the design removed the middle red stripe of the flag, making the plates much more legible.

Guy Peterson reports one of these in the nnnZA series on a 1 ton truck with a weight sticker.

Support Our Troops - Handicapped: 50ZB 2010-02-12 Nick Jankovich

Support Our Troops - Motorcycle: 04939MT 2013-09-17 Nick Jankovich

Nick also reports seeing a POLICE plate in the Support Our Troops format.

Jay Maynard - 16 Oct ’19

University of Minnesota

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Nick Jankovich - 2 Aug ’11

Military Veteran Plates

Afghan War Veteran

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Hap Huber - 26 Mar ’15

Bronze Star Veteran

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Hap Huber - 9 Jun ’15

Combat Wounded Veteran

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CWV Handicapped: ZS67 2011-09-20 Nick Jankovich

Jay Maynard - 17 Dec ’18

Disabled American Veterans

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Nick Jankovich - 30 Jun ’12


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Ex-POW embossed at bottom of plate, "P/O/W" before numbers is stacked on angle, (not directly across or down.)

For numbers less than 1000, EX is stacked on top of POW, both horizontal (not at an angle.)

Eric Sivertsen - 16 Dec ’09

Gulf War Veteran

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Jay Maynard - 27 Oct ’18

GWOT Veteran

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Global War On Terror

Jay Maynard - 1 Aug ’18

Iraq War Veteran

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Motorcycle version: 00493MV ("Iraq Vet" on bottom) 2014-05-29 Nick Jankovich

Jay Maynard - 12 Jun ’18

Proud To Be A Veteran

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This is an optional that isn't for a specific conflict or service branch. American flag on left side.

Also seen: ZS860 (but we don't know what the difference is.)

Jay Maynard - 4 Jun ’18

Vietnam Veteran

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There is a second version of this plate with a medal to the left of the registration characters. The format is 000MV.

Medal high: 424MV 2013-05-16 Nick Jankovich

Low: 0004VV 2015-06-23 Jay Maynard

Jay Maynard - 31 Dec ’18

Inactive Series (off the road)


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Red, white, blue, with black screened characters

David R. Wilson advises that according to the MN Statehood Sesquicentennial Final Report (and other news items) with photo, the first Sesqui plate was SQ001.

Guy Peterson - 21 Sep ’10