The “super 8” license plate auctioned off by the Taipei Motor Vehicles Office in October last year was finally claimed on Wednesday — one day before the claim period expired — by a car company commissioned by the buyer.
License plate number “8888-88” is considered a “super plate” because the character ba (八) — eight in Chinese — sounds similar to fa (發, prosperity) and it is therefore considered lucky.
It was sold for NT$3.5 million (US$121,230).
According to the auto company handler, surnamed Huang (黃), the buyer originally meant the plate to be a gift for his father on Father’s Day, but declined to claim it after a local auto magazine launched a campaign asking readers to guess which car would be spotted with the plate on it.
Huang said that as of Tuesday, the buyer was inclined not to claim the plate and did not seem to care that the NT$3.5 million spent on it would be lost.
However, on Wednesday, the buyer called the company and asked it to claim the plate on his behalf and he also picked out an average-priced car, worth about NT$600,000, for the plate, Huang said.
“While we don’t know what the buyer is going to do with the car with the super plate, we think the possibility of the buyer driving it is very low. He might rent out the car through our company,” Huang said.
The going rate for renting a Taiwan-made car valued at about NT$600,000 is about NT$2,500 per day and it would have to be rented out every day for the next four years just to get back the price of the plate and the car, Huang added.
Translated by Jake Chung, staff writer