1973 (black/reflective white) vg $5.00 "NBW*325" (10177)



"75" base, "AAA 000" format:  The following design began in 1975 and had a debossed unpainted "75" in the right stickerwell.  Up to about the middle of the alphabet, this design used a star separator similar to the 1974 and previous year issues.  After that, a Texas shaped separator was used.  Later issues of this base saw the "75" removed from the stickerwell.  The plate number format used was "AAA 000", but plates with numbers less than 100 used a "AAA 00" format.




1982 black/white "000 AAA" format:  Some time during 1982, when the "AAA 000" format was exhausted, the plate format was switched to "000 AAA".




1985 "SESQUICENTENNIAL" base:  This design began in 1985 in anticipation of recognizing the 150th anniversary of independence in 1986.  This design began with the "SESQUICENTENNIAL" below the plate number, then, for some unknown reason, switched to above the plate number.






1988 (blue/reflective white) emissions vg $5.00 "401 MKU" (10204)


Smog emission controls: Beginning with the 1987 expiration sticker, Texas began a smog emissions program in the Dallas/Ft. Worth and El Paso areas.  "Emissions" stickers had a bar above the year on the sticker (a bar above and below in later years).  The last expiration sticker was issued in 1993 ("94" sticker).  After that to the present, the state issued yearly windshield decals.

1986 "Big Red" Texas base, "000 AAA" format:  This design began following the 1986 sesquicentennial base and is called "Big Red" because of the big red "TEXAS" across the top of the plate.



1986 "big red" Texas "AAA 00A" format:  When the "big red" base exhausted the "000 AAA" format, the format was changed to "AAA 00A", excluding all vowels.  This type is not common as it began at the "BBB" block and ran until replaced by the flag design at the "BKX" block.  With this new format, Texas discontinued use of vowels on passenger plates.  This is why the format began at "BBB", rather than "AAA".



1989 Flag left slogan base:  This design began with the flag to the left of "TEXAS" and had a plate number format of "AAA 00A" beginning with the "BKX" block and continuing to exclude all vowels.  Originally, this design did not have a slogan, but later "THE LONE STAR STATE" was added at the bottom of the plate.  Texas discontinued issuing renewal stickers for the plate after 1993 (the "94" sticker being the final year on the stickers).  The state instead issued yearly windshield decals.  (Some "AAA 00A" format plates exist on the flag right base in error.  All of these are in "Zxx" blocks.)

1994 (blue & red/reflective white) emissions vg $3.00 "LTL 19S" (10078)

1994 (blue & red/reflective white) non-emissions vg $3.00 "LHS 72F" (10593)

1994 (blue & red/reflective white) non-emissions vg $3.00 "MGR 33H" (10718)

1994 (blue & red/reflective white) non-emissions vg $3.00 "LSS 56R" (10917)

1994 (blue & red/reflective white) non-emissions vg $3.00 "FVN 12J" (10924)

ns (blue & red/reflective white) vg $3.00 "MVH 19P" (10954)

ns (blue & red/reflective white) vg $3.00 "YJF 70N" (10972)

ns (blue & red/reflective white) vg $3.00 "VHZ 34R" (10978)

ns (blue & red/reflective white) vg $3.00 "RGT 13L" (10998)

ns (blue & red/reflective white) vg $3.00 "PVC 93M" (11029)

ns (blue & red/reflective white) vg $3.00 "PKR 83M" (11040)




1989 Flag right base:  When the plate number for the "flag left" design reached "ZZZ 99Z", the flag was moved to the right of "TEXAS" and began with a "A00 AAA" plate number format, excluding vowels.  (Some early "A00 AAA" format plates exist on the flag left base in error.)




1999 "A00 AAA" shuttle base:  This design continued the plate number sequence where the "flag right" base left off.  Vowels continued to be excluded.

(blue/reflective white & blue) vg $3.00 "W03 RDL" (11053)

(blue/reflective white & blue) vg $3.00 "V25 DTJ" (11074)

(blue/reflective white & blue) vg $3.00 "W61 RFZ" (11084)

(blue/reflective white & blue) vg $3.00 "Z19 BRS" (11105)

(blue/reflective white & blue) vg $3.00 "Z78 MTB" (11118)

(blue/reflective white & blue) vg $3.00 "Z51 CDY" (11122)

(blue/reflective white & blue) vg $3.00 "Y45 HWV" (11185)

(blue/reflective white & blue) vg $3.00 "X63 ZPX" (11217)



2004 "000 AAA" shuttle base:  When the previous plate number format reached "Z99 ZZZ", the state went to a "000 AAA" format.  At approximately the "000 Fxx", the state switched from steel to aluminum.  Vowels again were excluded.

(blue/reflective white & blue) vg $3.00 "090 BWW" (11270)

(blue/reflective white & blue) vg $3.00 "937 CPN" (11275)

(blue/reflective white & blue) vg $3.00 "064 BXR" (11290)

(blue/reflective white & blue) vg $3.00 "873 FSV" (11629)

(blue/reflective white & blue) vg $3.00 "873 FSV" (11630)



2005 "000 AAA" modified shuttle design base:  This previous shuttle design was modified with slight changes to the design.  An American flag was added to the side of the shuttle craft, seven brighter stars now appear above the shuttle, the horse and rider were reduced in size, the bush to the right of the horse and rider was redesigned, and the state silhouette in the center of the plate now was a Texas flag instead of solid red.  My understanding is that the seven brighter stars represented the seven astronauts who died aboard the Columbia shuttle when it burnt up upon reentry over Texas skies, but I have not heard any confirmation of that tribute.  The plate numbers continued the sequence where the previous shuttle design left off.




2007 "AAA 000" modified shuttle design base:  When the 2005 base reached "999 ZZZ", the numbers and letters were flipped around.  The design is the same as the "000 AAA" base with the flag and again excluded the vowels in the plate number.




2009 dark sky/clouds base:  This design brings a completely flat passenger plate for the first time.  The design is largely a partly cloudy sky with a mountain range in the distance at the bottom.  Red and blue streaks are in the top left corner of the plate with a white star over the streaks.  The state began a new seven-digit plate number format "BB0 B000", skipping the vowels.

(black/reflective multicolored) exc $3.00 "BJ8 P836" (11156)

(black/reflective multicolored) vg $3.00 "BX3 L303" (14042)

(black/reflective multicolored) vg $3.00 "CD1 K426" (14043)


2011 light sky/clouds base:  A continuation of the previous "dark sky" design, the sky was lightened up and the plate number moved slightly lower to address law enforcement's concern about visibility of the plate numbers.  The change was made approximately the "CJ..." block and continued the "BB0 B000" format, skipping vowels.

(black/reflective multicolored) m $3.00 "DP4 F166" (14051)

(black/reflective multicolored) m $3.00 "DK3 S749" (14052)

(black/reflective multicolored) m $3.00 "DK3 T320" (14053)




2012 black/white base:  Early in 2012, the state scrapped the graphic design, presumably due to the continued concern from law enforcement of plate number visibility.  A plain design, the new "BBB 0000" format began, again skipping vowels.






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This page was last updated 06/18/14