Hey who's that dude on the new Illinois license plate? Come 2017, you will be seeing his face when you drive around the state.

Illinois Secretary of State's office has announced a total re-design of Illinois license plates and that feature none other than Abraham Lincoln's face.

Illinois Secretary of State

Not everyone will get the new plate right away. Beginning in January, older license plates will be replaced first for passenger vehicles. B truck plates will be replaced in January of 2018. Eventually new license plates will be issued for everyone!

Won't that cost a lot of money for our cash strapped state? The Secretary of State says the program will be cost efficient and result in no additional cost to taxpayers.

So is there an underlying reason? The press release from the Illinois Secretary of State points out that on older license plates, the reflectivity diminishes with age, which impacts
law enforcement’s ability to quickly and accurately identify license plate numbers.

Don't call me a cynic, but it sounds like a way to capture more revenue from traffic and speed camera violations.

As far as when you can expect to have your plate replaced:

In 2017, passenger plates that were manufactured in 2000 and 2001 will be replaced. In 2018, passenger plates that were manufactured in 2002 and 2003 will be replaced. Each year the office will continue to replace older license plates with the newly issued plate. The process will start again in 2027, replacing the plates issued in 2017.

Welcome Abe! You're lookin' good!