Car radios will work for another ten years in the UK

Keith Belcher has spotted this good news for classic car enthusiasts as it "means our period car radios will work for another ten years".

Listeners of popular radio stations such as Classic FM and TalkSport will be able to access their favourite analogue shows for another ten years thanks to new plans announced by the UK Government.

What is AM radio?
AM broadcasting is a radio broadcasting technology which employs amplitude modulation (AM) transmissions. It was the first method developed for making audio radio transmissions and is still used worldwide, primarily for medium wave (also known as "AM band") transmissions, but also on the longwave and shortwave radio bands.

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Media Minister John Whittingdale has today set out how commercial radio will be licensed in the UK over the next decade so that listeners can continue to enjoy their stations of choice despite rapid changes in technology and radio listening. The Minister added "today’s step ensures there is no disruption for loyal listeners of treasured FM and AM radio services".

Nearly 60 per cent of all radio listening is now via digital devices, but analogue stations remain an important platform for millions of listeners who still tune into FM and AM radio services every day. GOV.UK

Several FM and AM commercial radio licences are due to expire from early 2022. Provided the stations also broadcast on digital radio, the UK Government has decided to allow Ofcom to renew these analogue licences for a further ten-year period.

Many classic cars have an original period matching Motorola or Radiomobile radio from the mid 1970s.

The UK Government has today published the response to a public consultation on extending analogue commercial radio broadcasting licences which ran from December 2019 to February 2020 and sought views on whether these licences should be renewed, and if so how long for. Read the consultation response

Analogue (FM or AM) commercial radio licences are issued by the UK regulator Ofcom under powers granted to them by section 86 of the Broadcasting Act 1990. Such a licence permits a commercial radio station to broadcast to a specific licensed geographic area (known as the measured coverage area) in accordance with a specified format (e.g. mainly speech-related requirements, such as news) for a set period of time.