How much does it cost to get Spanish number plates for a UK or other EU vehicle? We get asked this question everyday, it’s constantly being asked on Facebook and forums, and whilst it’s not a straightforward one to answer, because there are many variables, here we provide an accurate as possible guide to the costs, along with simple explanations and some tips.
The cost to get Spanish number plates for a UK or other EU vehicle
We break down the costs into what we call the T’s, and some may or may not apply depending on the car and or your situation.
You’ll need lots of it, and we all know time is money. For the average straight forward registration, e.g. a UK or EU registered left hand drive vehicle with EU type approval, you should prepare to measure time spent in days, rather than hours, assuming everything goes smoothly. If it’s not straight forward, e.g. RHD, vehicle or no EU type approval, or things go wrong, you can think in weeks, months or if you’re really unlucky – forever.
Each persons vehicle and circumstances are different, and only you know how much your time is worth and whether its worth trying to save money by doing it yourself, or paying someone for their time to do it for you. If you pay someone, (a good idea), and most do, you have the following options:
A gestoria specialises in administrative processes, so if you employ one, you’re paying them to take care of paperwork, not to take care of the process of getting Spanish number plates on your vehicle. So for example, if you land at his desk at the very start of the process, he might refer you to a technician to get a ficha, (see Tecnical below), if not you’ll need to sort this out yourself.
Gestoria cost = €150 – €250
Someone or a company that specialises in getting Spanish number plates for UK / EU vehicles, will take care of the whole process, hence why you’ll pay more.
If you decide to use a specialist, ask for recommendations from people who have already used someone or a company. Make sure they are registered as a business, and get them to provide you with a full breakdown of the costs.
Specialist cost = €250 – €500
These green provisional ‘P’ plates indicate that the vehicle is in the process of getting Spanish number plates. Not everyone needs temporary plates, you might opt for them if your MOT had run out and you need to continue using the vehicle whilst it’s being registered in Spain.
Temporary plates cost = €140 – €200
(note special registration tax, if applicable, has to be paid when getting temporary plates – see Tax below)
This is all the bits related to certification of the vehicle and conformity. The vehicle certification can be by way of manufacturers CoC (Certificate of Conformity), or commonly used employing a technican to document the specification of the vehicle in a ‘ficha tecnica reducida‘.
A valid CoC alone, does not guarantee that the vehicle can and will be registered. Similarly, a technician is paid to provide a certificate, not to ensure that the vehicle is correct to pass the verification checks. They will document the vehicle and point out if the vehicle conforms or not, if the vehicle has been changed, or additions made to the original specification.
Technical costs = €100 – €200
If these are required, either to return the car to its original conforming ‘factory’ specification. For example removing things that have been added on like tow bars, or to ensure it meets standards, e.g. replacing headlights on right hand drive cars, your cost will be bumped up. How much depends on the vehicle and modifications.
Modification costs = €0 – €1000’s
Once the vehicle has its certification, it has to undergo an official inspection to confirm that the vehicle tallies with it’s certification and that it is also roadworthy.
It is at this part of the process that knowledge, experience and expertise, (or lack of it) can add to costs, be that in time, or actual money wasted. If there are problems with the vehicle they’ll need to be resolved. If you’re using a good specialist they will check the vehicle for potential issues, highlight, them help you resolve them, or find a way around. They will also check the common road worthiness things like tyres, lights etc.
Test costs = €100 – €150
To get Spanish number plates for UK vehicle, there are taxes to pay. In every case the Spanish equivalent of road tax, known as IVTM / SUMA, and Special Registration Tax.
Road tax rates are set by the local authority (Ayuntamiento) and are based on the power rating of the vehicle. Rates are typically considerably lower than the equivalent UK tax rates.
Special registration tax base is calculated using the vehicle new value, and applying a depreciation factor according to its age. The applicable rate depends on the vehicle CO2 emissions.
Special registration tax depreciation allowances and tax rates
Vehicle age up to 1 year = 100 %
From 1 year, up to 2 = 84 %
From 2 years, up to 3 = 67 %
From 3 years, up to 4 = 56 %
From 4 years, up to 5 = 47 %
From 5 years, up to 6 = 39 %
From 6 years, up to 7 = 34 %
From 7 years, up to 8 = 28 %
From 8 years, up to 9 = 24 %
From 9 years, up to 10 = 19 %
From 10 years, up to 11 = 17 %
From 11 years, up to 12 = 13 %
More than 12 years = 10 %
Tax Rate based on emissions
Less than 120g/km = 0%
121g/km up to 160g/km = 4.75%
161g/km up to 200g/km = 9.75%
201g/km or more = 16.9%
Special Registration Tax Calculation Examples
Vehicle date first reg 01/01/2011 depreciation band 7-8 years 28%
The calculation is as follows: Vehicle new value X depreciation % divide answer by 1.28 and multiply by applicable tax %
BMW320 d Touring 1995cc 114g/km new value €31000 ( 0 tax emission below 121 g/km )
BMW320 i Touring 1995cc 149g/km new value €26800 €26800 X 28% / 1.28 X 4.75% = €278.47
BMW320 i Touring Aut. 1995cc 164g/km new value €29900 €29900 X 28%/1.28 X 9.75% = €637.72
BMW335 i Aut. 2979cc 202g/km €39700 €39700 X 28% / 1.28 X 16.9% = €1467.66
As you can see the emissions make a big difference. In recent years, manufacturers have greatly reduced their vehicles emissions, which means that many new cars attract little or no special registration tax.
If you are moving to Spain to reside full time, you can apply for an exemption from the Special Registration Tax. When you do this you are essentially declaring that you’ve changed your fiscal residence from UK, or another EU country, to Spain. It’s therefore advisable to take advice if you’re considering this option to make sure there are no other tax implications from doing so.
For the final registration of the vehicle, you will pay a fee to the DGT. If you’re doing it yourself, this is the only cost at this last stage apart from of course your time. If you’re using a gestoria, they will add a presentation fee, and likewise, if you’re paying a specialist, their fee would include handling this final presentation.
DGT fee = €105
Gestor / Agent presentation fee = €50 – €100
You’ll need to work that one out yourself using the above info, or click on the link below, fill in the form and we’ll do it for you!