A slightly different challenge this week, offering a window into the CarAdvice team's soul...
Customisation is in vogue at the moment, but choice can be seriously confusing. In our configurator challenge, we let the CarAdvice team loose on a manufacturer’s website to create their ideal spec of a certain model.
For this edition of the Configurator Challenge, we’re doing something a bit different, and having a play with the VicRoads personalised plate configurator. Below are the responses we could actually publish...
Mike Stevens, Producer
Just like Instagram usernames, most numberplate combinations I'd want are well and truly gone already. I go by 'mikedoeslife' on most social media, but of course that won't fit – and a six-character variation of it would be uninterpretable. So, I moved onto my model of car.
I tried for 'LEGGY', given the Liberty is called 'Legacy' everywhere else in the world, but of course that was taken. Then stupid things like 'LIB25L' (Liberty 2.5-litre), but, really, who wants to boast about their car's near-gutless engine? (The plate's available, by the way.)
(This all reminds me that I checked availability of 'GROVEL' before the Levorg was confirmed for Australia, and the plate was available. I told myself I'd buy a Levorg if the plate was still available after launch, but, by then, somebody had smartly snapped it up. (Imagine choosing a car based on the number plate... I am occasionally impulsive.))
Eventually, I moved my thinking from vanity to messaging... why try to come up with a variation on my name or the model of my car when I can just send a crass message to the car in front? 'MOVEIT' came to mind, but no surprise, that was taken. So, we end up at 'MOV3IT', which remarkably is available.
As for the colour and style, well, I prefer understated, simple and subtle in most things (the message aside...). Silver on black is about right for me.
I'm not gonna buy it, though – I'm happy with regular government-issued plates, and I've got one of the last 'Z' plates before we moved to the new 'we've run out of AAA-111 plates' system in Victoria. Which is kinda cool. So, dear readers, it's all yours.
Scott Collie, Journalist
Alright, so VicRoads wouldn't give me V QUICK. What it would give me, however, is V QUICC. Pop culture, meet street culture.
I've opted for slimline European-look plates, because this would be perfect for, say, a Porsche Cayman GTS in blue.
If the noisy exhaust and Porsche badge aren't enough of a giveaway, the plates tell the world my car means business.
Paul Maric, Senior Road Tester
Definition: A type of bipedal dinosaur resembling a smaller Tyrannosaurus Rex from the same two-legged family of dinosaurs, the Theropods.
Alternatively: The name of the baddest new dual-cab ute on the market. It's capable of clearing jumps and terrorising the Finke Desert Race, but it's likely to spend 99 per cent of its time climbing kerbs and terrorising smaller cars in traffic.
The camouflaged plate also harks back to its testing and tuning, which took place in the depths of the Australian outback.
Mandy Turner, Podcast Host and Road Tester
Every time I buy a new car, I spend hours thinking of as many combinations as possible. I’ve even had my Dad on the case before. It’s addictive, and you won’t rest until you find the perfect one.
I own a few myself: VOLK5Y, VW.OVL, and OMG 356 – all in black and white, as they match any colour car.
Only last week I was online purchasing the rights to the original plates I still have for my Beetle. That was a pretty special moment. This time I’ve gone for a generic plate more suited to cars that many dream of owning one day... we're talking supercars.
Picture this on a car someone would struggle to afford if they had kids, or unless they were super rich. Let’s face it, you really wouldn’t dare put this plate on a Honda Odyssey, would you? (Imagine buying an Odyssey when you don't have kids...)
Sarah Aitken, Production Manager, Video and Events
I got personalised plates for my 21st birthday, but I don't use them anymore. At my age it's less cool to display your date of birth on your car than it was back then!
The message on my plates is simple. OMG, look, a cat! How good are cats. They're so cute and fluffy. Don't you dare tell me otherwise!
Jin Tee, Operations Director
This number plate was inspired by the cool, calm and collected Clinton.
Senior Constable Ash Bowden from the Australian Highway Patrol asked Clinton why he was sitting in a wrecked car which had mounted the kerb, and Clinton simply stated the obvious: "I’m just waiting for a mate."
Masi Ghadiri, Company Accountant
I kind of liked Audi A5 Cabriolet when I first saw it on our website. It'd be a car I would like to buy one day – in red, please!
This is the perfect plate for it!
James Wong, Journalist
I'm your regular degular schmegular boy from the hood, and my number plate is a representation of a common saying on hit TV series like The Real Housewives of Atlanta.
Not only am I not giving the haters my time, it's an awesome way to farewell whomever I leave in my rear-view mirror. #byegirl #girlbye.
It also wouldn't be a Wongy spec without being a shade of green, so my custom plate is 'Green with Envy'. Subtle...
Melissa Ong, Community Manager
I love personalised plates! As someone that owns a couple of custom plates, I often sit on the VPlates site and configure random combinations.
Today I am choosing to style my plate as the Euro Premium style. Meet V-CIVIC!
I'm currently driving a Honda Civic Type R from Brisbane to Melbourne, and this plate would suit it perfectly.
The FN2 Civic was built in Honda's U.K. Swindon plant and the word CIVIC, need I say more?
I love the standard size Euro plate with a black background. It also comes in white, silver and gold. Slimline is also available.