I'm doing my research to import a vehicle to my country. Vehicle Manufacture Year/month is 2006/12 and Registration Year/month is 2007/2. The vehicle import regulation of my country states the following:

Used or reconditioned road tractors; motor vehicles for the transport of persons; motor cars and other motor vehicles, principally designed for the transport of persons including station wagons and racing cars; motor vehicles for the transport of goods; dual purpose motor vehicles; vehicle chassis; vehicle chassis fitted with engines which are less than five years of their year of manufacture.

What does "less than five years of their year of manufacture" mean? If you can please provide an example also so that it's easy for me to understand.

  • 3
    Probably “of” should have been “from.”
    – Xanne
    Mar 19, 2022 at 2:14
  • 2
    It would be good to see the source of this 'statement', and the actual statement (eg 'A, B, C ... must not be coated in yoghurt before import.' Mar 19, 2022 at 12:10
  • I’m voting to close this question because the word choice is a mistranslation, a mistake or just poor English. A fluent or native speaker would recognise this. Mar 21, 2022 at 22:30
  • The probable intended sense of the phrase "which are less than five years of their year of manufacture" is "which were manufactured within the past five years." The wording is not particularly coherent as written, however, as you surely noticed.
    – Sven Yargs
    Mar 22, 2022 at 7:12

1 Answer 1


Of, when used in the context of time, means from the specified time. Specifically, it means before. Five of the hour means five minutes before the next hour (if the current time is 7:00, it means 7:55) . In your case, less than five years of their year of manufacture means that the components were made at earliest 5 years before than the date of manufacture.

From Wikitionary usage #11:

11. Expressing a point in time.
... 4. Denotes the number of minutes before the hour
    I’ll be ready at ten of two.=I’ll be ready at 1:50
    (informal) Often used without the hour
    I’ll be ready at ten of.=I’ll be ready at 1:50, or 2:50, or whatever time ending in 10 makes most sense in context.

Usage notes

  • 1
    I think it's worth saying that of used in this way is specifically American English, and a link to a dictionary would be helpful. But for this Brit at least, I don't understand the explanation of "five of the hour" which doesn't seem idiomatic even in AmE; and I think your last "than the date of manufacture" could be clearer if you said "than when they were used in the manufacture of the vehicle".
    – Andrew Leach
    Mar 19, 2022 at 10:02
  • 1
    @AndrewLeach I don't think this usage is specific to AmE as I can find the usage in the Wikitionary, which makes usage notes in specific dialects (such as AmE). I will include the link to the Wikitionary for reference.
    – uberhaxed
    Mar 19, 2022 at 10:30
  • 1
    Ah well. Since it's Wiktionary, that's easily put right. Cambridge says it's US.
    – Andrew Leach
    Mar 19, 2022 at 11:13
  • 1
    @AndrewLeach To be honest, when speaking to people (living) in India at work they seem to be confused by this expression so perhaps it's not common in international (or British) English. Then again, they get confused by a lot of other expressions too and I get confused by theirs so it may just be an Indian English observation and not an international English observation.
    – uberhaxed
    Mar 19, 2022 at 11:20

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