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How Steve Jobs got away with never having a licence plate

Steve Jobs' high-powered Mercedes-Benz SL55 AMG sports car, notoriously, never had a licence plate fitted. Here's how he got away with it.


Steve Jobs broke the mould where consumer tech was concerned, but he was also a rebel on the road, riding around in a high-powered Mercedes-Benz SL55 AMG sports car that, notoriously, never had a licence plate fitted.

Why Jobs did this and how he got away with it has baffled Apple fans for years, but iTWire thinks it has the answer to at least one of those questions, courtesy of former Apple security employee, and CTO of Entrust, Jon Callas.

Jobs managed to avoid the long nightstick of the law thanks to a little-known loophole in California legislation, according to Callas, which states anyone with a brand-new car has a maximum of six months to affix a number plate to their vehicle.

Jobs made arrangements with the company from which he'd leased the Merc to change the car every six months. Unlike most people, who might switch to a different model, or perhaps even experiment with a different colour, Steve would exchange the vehicle for another identical silver SL55 AMG every single time.

But why? Is it because Jobs thought the licence plate spoiled the aesthetics of the car? Was he exercising that famous Apple design minimalism? Perhaps he was simply 'opting out' of being identified and tracked wherever he went.

Sadly, the answer to that question (and the one about why he was so fond of using disabled parking spaces) is one the former Apple boss may have taken to his grave.

Image credit: Ranajune