‘S5’ is a 1903 plate which was originally registered in Edinburgh and was previously used on a Rolls-Royce.
Over the years it has been worn by a number of Porsche 911s but most recently it has been attached to a 2011 Audi A6 Allroad worth around £15,000.
The owner, who has kept the plate for more than 30 years, decided to sell it over the weekend at Bonhams’ Goodwood Members Meeting sale in West Sussex.
And because it was the fifth plate to be issued in Scotland, it was given an eye-watering guide price of £160,000.
There was a fierce bidding war among interested parties and it ended up selling for £270,000.
This makes it one of the most expensive registration plates ever sold at auction.
Sholto Gilbertson, motor car specialist at the auction house, said: “’S5’ is one of Scotland’s earliest registration numbers, issued in Edinburgh 113 years ago.
“In the same family ownership for the past 30 years, the sale presented a wonderful opportunity for bidders, resulting in £270,300, far exceeding its estimate.”
‘S5’ isn’t the first high-value plate Bonhams has sold, in 2006 it sold ‘M1’ for £331,500, a world record at the time. ‘R6’ sold in 2015 for £163,900, ‘FLY 1’ sold for £62,000 in 2007, and registration ‘NO 1’ sold for £133,250 in 2013.
The most expensive plate sold at auction is 25 O, which was bought by Ferrari dealer John Collins in 2014 for £518,000.