What is YOM?
Year Of Manufacture license plates may be legally registered from the same model year as your classic auto (e.g. you can register a set of ’57 plates to your ’57 Fairlane). The number on the plates, if it is not already taken, is assigned to your vehicle. In Ontario, YOM registration is available for vehicles up to the end of ’73, and motorcycles up to the end of ’75. If you have a ’74 – ’81 vehicle, you can use a set of ’73 passenger plates with the correct date sticker, due to a neat loophole in the rules. See the FAQ about ’74 and later vehicles. Motorcycles from ’76- ’80 used to be able to participate, but no longer.
Can I use YOM plates if my car is ’74 or later?
Yes. It’s not technically a YOM registration, although it is fully legal. Here’s how it works:
- Let’s assume you own a ’78 Camaro. You can buy a pair of ’73 plates (ABC-123 format) without a sticker, and we’ll put a ’78 sticker on what will be the rear plate (lower right sticker box). Some of our plates have the date sticker already affixed, so you can also choose from those for your particular year. We have stickers from ’74 going up to ’81.
- Call ServiceOntario at 1-800-AUTO-PL8 and order the same ABC123 plate number as an own-choice vanity plate. This costs $310 (higher than the YOM registration fee of $251.65).
- When your new plates arrive, take them to your local ServiceOntario outlet and have them legally attached to your car. Don’t bring the old plates that you bought from me– don’t even mention the old plates that you have… it’ll scare the clerk, and they can be quick to tell you something can’t be done if they don’t grasp it the first time. If an over-eager clerk offers to affix your expiry sticker on your plates, insist that you’ll do it at home.
- Affix the new expiry sticker on the top right of one of the old plates. Mount them on the car, and legally drive at your leisure. Hang the new plates in your garage for fun. This is OK because ’73 plates were never withdrawn from service. Someone who received passenger plates in ’73 and has kept renewing them, or bringing them forward for registry on newer cars, can still be using the original ’73 plate in the 21st century. They’re allowed to be on the road, and legally, they’re the same as new plates. Occasionally, we still see sets of these on the road, as pictured.
What do the ’74 through ’81 stickers look like?
’74: Red with black text
’75: Green with white text
’76: Blue with white text
’77: Orange with white text
’78: Blue with white text
’79: Red with white text
’80: White with blue text
’81: Green with white text
They are smaller than the present-day stickers, and fit neatly into the sticker box at the lower right of plates embossed with the “73” year. One single sticker was affixed to the rear plate, and the front plate did not have a sticker.
Stickers of the same size were made for license plates through ’82, but we only have stickers up to ’81 in stock.
It is worth noting that trailer plates from ’74-’79 were also given stickers of the same size, although the colours were different than those pictured here.