Mar 24, 2023 - News

These Minnesota license plates were deemed too naughty for the road

Illustration of Minnesota license plate with symbols implying a swear word.

Illustration: Allie Carl, Maura Losch/Axios

Minnesota drivers requested dozens of custom license plates that state officials deemed too raunchy for the road in 2022.

Driving the news: The explicit submissions were among the more than 160 vanity plate applications ultimately denied or rescinded last year, data Minnesota Driver and Vehicle Services provided to Axios.

Details: State law allows drivers to request a personalized plate. The cost is $111.

Yes, but: Combinations of letters and numbers that are "obscene, indecent, or immoral" or "of a nature that would offend public morals or decency" are not allowed.

  • Neither are submissions that include only numbers, could be used for commercial advertising or duplicate a plate already issued.

Zoom in: IFARTED, PIMPPIMP and FKNDEER were among the 30-plus specialty plates rejected by DVS between August 2021 and December 2022 because they were too explicit.

  • Some of the requested plates — including several spins on a popular acronym that references having intimate relations with someone's partner — were too suggestive for this family publication to print.

What they're saying: In many cases, applicants unsuccessfully sought to provide an explanation justifying their request.

  • One user, for example, suggested that UBTCH meant "upper Minnesota." DVS did not buy it.
  • State officials were also not persuaded by another driver's argument that G-SPOT was a road-appropriate reference to an auto shop specializing in customized GMC trucks.

Plus: Other proposed plates that didn't make the road (for non-explicit reasons) included QUEEN, MAD MAN, MOMSOON, 8675309 and BOND007.

The other side: A DVS spokesperson declined an interview request on the rejections, but noted that the committee that vets the requests commonly runs into issues that aren’t related to the content.

  • For example, a special plate application will be rejected if the car in question has an expired registration. In other cases, interested drivers fail to submit the full application.

Between the lines: Unlike in some other states, the list of denied Minnesota plates was largely devoid of phrases expressing disdain for political leaders.

  • Several that could have been interpreted as such, including IFJB46, were rejected.

Of note: The full data set provided to Axios also included requests that failed to make the roads for a variety of other reasons, such as a car being sold before the plate was issued or the customer changing their mind.

The bottom line: Riding dirty (when it comes to your plates) probably won't fly in Minnesota.


Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Twin Cities.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More Twin Cities stories

No stories could be found

Twin Citiespostcard

Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Twin Cities.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more