Italian licence plates are currently in the form of "XX 999 XX", where X stands for a capital letter and 9 for a number, written black on white. The whole system is incremental and started with AA000AA in the 90's, so you can roughly tell a vehicle's age by its licence plate number (the licence plate is unique for the vehicle even if it's resold).
Additionally, you can add white-on-blue stickers on the sides of your plate stating:
Before this system another one was used, that was made up of the two letter province code and six digits, with licence plates looking something like "MI 123456". This system had the problem that no more tan one million vehicles could exist per province, so since the seventies they started adding a letter and five digits for big provinces like Milan
In Italy there are special plates for entities like the police, the army, the Red Cross, firefighters and many other entities. They are still in the older form, though written black on white.