Vehicle Registration plates are like ID cards, but for cars. They are required in all countries for road vehicles such as cars, trucks, and motorbikes. The law makes it mandatory to have a number plate fixed to motor vehicles for official identifying purposes. And while this is no different for trucks and SUVs, we often get questions like “can you use truck plates on an SUV?” If you’re wondering the same thing, then keep on reading to find out.

SUVs can use Truck number plates. However, you are only allowed to purchase a truck plate for your SUV if its cargo space takes up more than half of the interior space. While laws in many states differ, a truck plate is not necessary if less than 50% of the interior is dedicated to cargo space.

Over 10 decades ago, Chevrolet made the first SUV, and it’s without a doubt that Sport Utility Vehicles and Trucks share a long line of history together. While there have been a lot of iterations and innovations to different models manufactured, this car segment has always remained a mix of the best parts of small cars and big cars.

Are car and truck plates the same?

A truck plate differs from a conventional license plate in that it serves a range of functions, the most common of which is to identify the purpose and type of vehicle.

Cars and trucks have separate vehicle license plates so that people can tell them apart. This means that you will have a different license plate depending on the type of vehicle you drive.

Does My SUV Need Truck Plates?

Many people believe that SUVs are the ideal vehicle for them since they provide all that they require in a vehicle. Whether it’s to fit a Peloton bike or just fit a couch inside the SUV, having an SUV provides you the best of both worlds since you get a lot of storage space for your goods when traveling or going to the store and also more seating than you would in a conventional car.

To decide if your SUV requires truck plates, a number of variables must be considered. These will indicate the purpose of your vehicle and whether you require truck plates rather than car plates. So, if you’re not sure what type of plates your SUV needs, check out the list below!

1. Number of Seats Available

The seating capacity of the vehicles is the key factor that distinguishes two SUVs with the same license plate type. A vehicle’s interior must have at least half of its space dedicated to seating in order to be classified as an automobile.

In the case of a standard SUV, this means that if there are more seats than cargo space, the vehicle may be classified as an automobile. If your vehicle does not have at least half of its space allocated to passengers, it is considered a truck and will require the appropriate plates.

2. Vehicle Weight and Size

There are different types of SUVs available today, and as a result, they are frequently classified based on their weight and size; for this reason, they are not always able to use standard license plates.

Truck plates are required for an SUV that is quite large and falls inside the weight range of a heavy truck. This is because those who need to identify the vehicle can get an estimate of its weight by looking at the truck plates.

In addition, the vehicle’s size does have an impact. Generally, larger vehicles, such as trucks, can weigh anything between 4,000 and 5,000 pounds while an average car weighs in at around 3,000 pounds.

This is a lot more weight on the road as such, some locations do not allow heavier vehicles to travel on it, and seeing a truck plate will alert people that the SUV is deemed a truck and weights more than the weight limit allows.

This will ensure that drivers of these larger and heavier vehicles are not being reckless on the road and are keeping themselves, others, and the roadways safe.

3. Truck Chassis

Another reason most SUVs are classified as trucks is that they are frequently constructed on truck chassis. One of its pros is that it increases the vehicle’s power to carry additional weight, whether it’s passengers or goods.

Since traditional SUVs are designed like trucks, it’s reasonable that they’d be classified as such by the state. Unlike automobiles (which have a standard frame without a truck chassis), vehicles with truck chassis can manage the rougher road. This enables them to simply go off-roading without requiring any car modifications.

Closing the curtain

Trucks are manufactured in a specific way to transport products and equipment. They are not considered passenger cars, even if they have a second row of seats.

Your SUV is not a passenger vehicle just because it has seating in the back. You must measure that space and determine that 50% of it is reserved for passengers; otherwise, state law may impose a fine, and you will be required to pay for the correct plates a second time.

Can you use truck plates on an SUV?

The size of the vehicle and the number of seats it has will determine the type of plates you can have. If you have a large SUV that’s based on truck chassis and combines the cargo room of a truck with the seating of a van, whether you like it or not, it is extremely similar to a heavy truck and necessitates plates that identify it as such.

The number of seating in the vehicle’s interior is the most important consideration, so start there. If your SUV has more than 50% seating capacity, you can choose to have automobile plates installed. Simply measure the amount of seating in your SUV’s interior, the vehicle’s size and weight, and whether your SUV has a truck chassis to see if it qualifies as an automobile.

About the Author

Larry Cruise


I know a lot about cars, man. I can look at any car's headlights and tell you exactly which way it's coming.

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