Super-rich Qataris are splashing out millions on “fancy” car number plates in an online auction run by a government department.

So far, more than 4.2 million Qatari riyals ($1.1 million) has been pledged on just 24 separate and unique car registration numbers being auctioned by the interior ministry of the energy-rich state.

The bidding started on Tuesday afternoon and ends on Thursday night.

As in Dubai, owning a distinct number plate has become a desirable status symbol for Qataris to publicly show off their wealth.

Most in demand are those with fewer numbers — most ordinary Qatari registration plates have six figures — repeated digits, or those in sequence.

A previous auction for “fancy vehicle numbers” at the end of last year saw one driver bid a reported 200-million riyals (almost $55 million) for the number plate 333355.

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