As a friend of the president of the "Romanian Retromobil Club", I
could study their archives. Among them, I found the collection of
first Romanian auto magazine called “Revista
automobila” issued from March
1906. The registration system was for the first time mentioned in the
no. 26 (February 1908) :
to it the cars should have a plate (rear or rear and front) with just a
number, identifying the owner of the car and not the car itself. The
given to a person or an institute for ever. If the owner changes his
would keep his number and the new car receives the same
owner’s number. Of
course, by a special demand, by hand, addressed to the police, one
renounce to his driving license and his number(s), this ones being
allocated to another person or institute. The first plates had no
dimensions, and even could be hand painted.
list of the owners of automobiles in February 1908 shows there were
cars in Romania (Transylvania was not part of Romania)
first number registered was “0” (zero !), for
Prince George V. Bibescu,
nephew of King George Bibescu, who abdicated in 1848. Here is his
HP, wearing a front big “0” plate white on black.
Prince Bibescu was at the beginning of XX century, the heart and soul
automotive movement in Romania. He was the president of the Romanian
Club and he participated at many races at that time in Romania and
good friend with the famous French aviator Louis Blériot he
join his piloting
school and obtain the flying license no. 20. Hero of the first W.W.
when he was
the leader of a squadron, he became after the war, the president of the
International Aeronautics Federation.
the February 1908 list, no. 63 appears Ion Maican a weII known
at his time. His Tourand 60HP shows a n° 63 front plate
list shows that the numbers were issued chronologically, no matter if
or institutes, from
letter of the Romanian Automobile Club addressed to the chief
the police on l5th of August, 1908 mentions for the first time the need
of a new
system for plates. All plates should be uniformly, same sizes and
most important, the name of the city where the car was registered
mentioned on the plate. They proposed the following abbreviations: Bc
new system was approved by the police on September or beginning of
A car participating to a race on 26TH of
October, 1908 wears a rear
plate 9.BC white on black.
no.39 of the magazine “Revista
automobila” (March 1909) published
the list of the 140 owners of cars using the new plates system. On July
1909 another Iist was published with 169 numbers.
1910, Prince Bibescu was more and more interested in aviation and then
“Revista automobila” magazine included more and
more articles about
aviation. (cover of
November 1910 issue). In 1912 the magazine
stopped to be published.
the first W.War another magazine about automobiles was published,
& Sport”, but I found only few numbers of this
Marius Necula, September 2007