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- 3.0.1 Eligibility for Motor Vehicle Registration in Kenya
- 3.0.2 Fees
- 3.0.3 Validity
- 3.0.4 Processing Time
- 3.0.5 Instructions for Motor Vehicle Registration in Kenya
- 3.0.6 Required Information
- 3.0.7 Need for the Document – Motor Vehicle Registration in Kenya
- 3.0.8 External Links
- 3.0.9 1920-1989
- 3.0.10 1989-2007
- 3.0.11 2007-2014
- 3.0.12 2014-2020
- 3.0.13 2020-
- 3.0.14 Special plates
- 3.0.15 Diplomatic and United Nations codes
- 3.1 REGISTRATION DOCUMENTS
The current series of vehicle registration plates in Kenya are on a white plate with black lettering and look quite similar to UK suffix style registrations. The format is LLL NNNL, where ‘L’ denotes a letter and ‘N’ denotes a digit. The older series of number plates were black with white or silver lettering. Later in the older series the front plates were reflective white with black lettering and the rear plates were reflective yellow with black lettering. According to Kenya National Bureau of Statistics there are over 1,626,380 vehicles in Kenyan road as at 2011 This is the Procedure on How to Apply for Motor Vehicle Registration in Kenya
- The receiving officer receives the application documents at the registration counter and checks them against a checklist to confirm that all are presented. If not the applicant is advised accordingly.
- The receiving officer records critical information of the document to a register.
- Certificate of clearance is retrieved and attached to the application document.
- The documents are examined by an examining officer to ensure they are genuine and the vehicle details are in order.
- If satisfied the examining officer recommend approval otherwise the application is rejected.
- Documents are passed to approving officer who examines and if satisfied approves for registration by signing and stamping.
Required Documents – Motor Vehicle Registration in Kenya
- Duty and VAT paid receipts.
- Import Entry form.
- Foreign Registration Book (with its certi?ed English translation if the same is not in English).
- Mombasa Port Release or Airways Bill, Bill of Lading.
- Import Declaration Form (IDF).
- Duplicate valid insurance certi?cate.
- Owners National Identity card or Business Registration Certi?cate where a 00
- Kenya Revenue Authority PIN card.
- Completed application Form (Form A).
Office Locations & Contacts
Kenya Revenue Authority
Times tower, Haile selassie Avenue
Postal Address: 48240-00100
Eligibility for Motor Vehicle Registration in Kenya
Licensed Motor vehicle dealer. Individual motor vehicle owner
Kenya shilling 500 to1000 depending on tare weight.
About 3 to 7 days.
Instructions for Motor Vehicle Registration in Kenya
First make sure all the documents are assembled before beginning the procedure. Lack of any documents will lead to rejection of application.
The vehicle should also have been cleared at the Mombasa port by an accredited Clearance agency.
- MOTOR VEHICLE PARTICULARS
- Type of vehicle motor vehicle/ trailer/ motor cycle
- Make of the vehicle
- Body type.
- Other vehicle description
- Year of manufacture.
- Tare weight in kilogramme
- Manufactures chasis or frame number
- Number of axles
- Principal body colour
- Is it a new vehicle No Yes
- Has the vehicle previously been registered No Yes
- Use of the vehicle
- Expected normal location of vehicle
- Method of propulsion(Petrol, Diesel, Other oil ,Steam)
- APPLICANTS PARTICULARS
- Name of Institution /Company employed
- Telephone Number
- Postal Address
Need for the Document – Motor Vehicle Registration in Kenya
Registration and licensing of motor vehicles and drivers in Kenya are handled by the Registrar of Motor vehicles. This is done in the Road Transport Department which is managed by the Kenya Revenue Authority. Vehicle registration involves adding a vehicles details to the motor vehicle register.
The registration process is handled by the motor vehicle dealer before handing over the vehicle to the customer. A motor car should not be used without number plates and appropriate licenses.
The Registration Book is issued to the car owner later by the Registrar. However, if the motor vehicle is bought on credit, the Registration Book will show joint owners and it will be released to the financier who will retain it until the loan is repaid. The transfer will then be effected to remove joint ownership. The dealer will obtain from the vehicle buyer the necessary information and documents for the motor vehicle registration.
It is not known when the first vehicle was registered in Kenya, but it is thought to be before 1920. Single letters were attributed to each of the 14 registration districts i.e. N=Kiambu, E=Kisumu, J=Kitale, B, H, T, W=Nairobi, A=Mombasa, C=Nakuru, D=Kericho, F=Eldoret, G=Nyeri, K=Muranga (Fort Hall), L=Kisii, Q=Machakos, S=Lamu, V=Isiolo, Y=Nanyuki. A serial number of 1-9999 followed, on white on black plates, save for public transport vehicles, ie buses, taxis and hire cars, which used black on white.
The 1950 K-prefix series was a change to a three-letter numbering system, necessitated by the increasing number of vehicles being registered. It was introduced on a regional basis as follow; All plates began with K, followed by the regional code (below) and a serial letter A-Z, not using letters I or O.
- Nairobi – KB (1950), KF (1955), KG (1959), KH (1961), KK (1965), KM (1968), KN (1970), KP (1972), KQ (1974), KR (1976) and KV (1978)
- Mombasa – KA (1950), KJ (1966), KT (1977)
- Nakuru – KC (1950), KL (1967), KS (1977)
- Kisumu – KD (1950), KU (1977)
- Nanyuki – KE
Other number were issued
- Some KC and KL numbers were issued to Eldoret and Kitale.
- KBA was issued to Nyeri, the first Nairobi number being KBB. Nyeri then followed with KFE and KGT.
- Kericho was issued with KDB then KDK which were used up to 1969.
- Kisii was issued with KDE then shared KDK with Kericho.
- Kakamega used KDL between 1962 and 1967.
The numbering system was centralised in 1980 and after that date all Kenya numbers are in sequence. Between 1980 and 1984 the unused numbers from Nakuru (KS), Mombasa (KT) and Kisumu (KU) were issued, KW (1984) being the first number that was never used regionally.
After the registration of vehicle KZZ 999, the second generation was started in 1989. The series follow KAA 001A to KAZ 999Z The present KAA xxx A series had, the advantage being that each third letter of the number provided for 23,976 registrations instead of the previous 999. Hence for the series to be finished about 575424 vehicle will be registered. KAF, KAO, KAI were omitted.
After the registration of vehicle KAZ 999Z, the third generation was started in 2007 as KBA 001A. The series will run from KBA 001A to KBZ 999Z
In 2014, the government announced a revamp of the registration plates to a new look, featuring electronic chips 
After the registration of vehicle KBZ 999Z, the fourth generation was started in 2014 as KCA 001A. The series ran from KCA 001A to KCZ 999Z
After the registration of vehicle KCZ 999Z, the fifth generation was started in September 2020 with KDA 001A. The series will run from KDA 001A to KDZ 238Z
There are other number sequences that are used in Kenya.
- The Kenyan Government uses GK;
- The Kenyan County Governments use CG, for example Nairobi County vehicles are 47 CG;
- Governors use GVN followed by their county code;
- Kenya Army – KA;
- Kenya Air Force – KAF;
- Kenya Navy – KN;
- Kenya Agricultural Institute – KAI;
- Diplomats use N CD and they are red plates with white letters and numbers;
- Parastatals use blue plates with white letters and numbers
- Motorcycles now use KMCA series;
- Heavy Machinery uses “KHMA” series;
- Tricycle uses KTWA series;
- NGO – KX;
- Vehicle Dealers Number plate series – KG.
Diplomatic and United Nations codes
The diplomatic number given to the embassies were assigned in the order that they recognized Kenya’s independence, with Germany (then West Germany) as the first country to recognize Kenya’s independence having the diplomatic plate 1 CD.
As of 2008, the diplomatic / UN sequence assignation was as below:
1 CD – Germany
2 CD – Russian Federation
3 CD – Ethiopia
4 CD – China
5 CD – Norway
6 CD – Hungary
7 CD – Egypt
8 CD – Serbia
9 CD – Italy
10 CD – France
11 CD – Slovakia
12 CD – Denmark
13 CD – Japan
14 CD – Sudan
15 CD – Austria
16 CD – India
17 CD – Australia
18 CD – Canada
19 CD – Holy See (The Vatican)
20 CD – Finland
21 CD – Switzerland
22 CD – Britain
23 CD – Liberia
24 CD – Israel
25 CD – Nigeria
26 CD – Ghana
27 CD – Netherlands
28 CD – Malawi
29 CD – USA
30 CD – Belgium
31 CD – Sweden
32 CD – Pakistan
33 CD – Poland
34 CD – Korea
35 CD – Bulgaria
36 CD – Greece
37 CD – Cuba
38 CD – Kuwait
39 CD – Spain
41 UN – World Health Organization (WHO)
45 UN – World Food Programme (WFP)
45 CD – Romania
46 CD – Thailand
47 CD – The African Union (A.U)
48 CD – Colombia
49 CD – India
50 CD – Somalia
51 CD – Brazil
52 CD – Turkey
53 CD – Lesotho
54 CD – Zambia
55 CD – Madagascar
56 CD – Malaysia
57 CD – D.R. Congo (DRC)
58 CD – eSwatini
59 CD – Sri Lanka
60 CD – Iraq
61 CD – Rwanda
64 CD – Iran
65 CD – Cyprus
66 CD – Argentina
67 UN – United Nations Information Centre (UNIC)
68 CD – Philippines
69 CD – Burundi
70 CD – Chile
71 CD – Oman
73 CD – European Union
74 CD – Yemen
75 CD – Kenya Mission to UNEP
76 CD – Côte d’Ivoire (Consulate)
77 CD – Bangladesh
78 CD – Saudi Arabia
80 CD – Libya
81 CD – Ireland (Consulate)
83 CD – Algeria
84 CD – Palestine
85 CD – Uganda
86 CD – Mexico
87 CD – Morocco
88 CD – Costa Rica (Consulate)
89 CD – Gabon (Consulate)
91 CD – Indonesia
92 CD – Portugal
93 CD – Venezuela
94 CD – Zimbabwe
96 CD – Asian Development Bank
97 CD – Tanzania
99 CD – Peru
102 CD – Mozambique
103 CD – South Africa
104 CD – Eritrea
106 CD – Czech Republic
107 CD – The Aga Khan
108 UN – UNFPA
110 UN – UNIDO (United Nations Industrial Development Organization)
112 UN – International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)
113 UN – United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS)
115 CD – Ukraine
116 CD – Sahrawi
117 CD – Djibouti
118 CD – Sierra Leone
121 CD – South Sudan
123 CD – United Arab Emirates
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