Character segmentation (CS) plays an important role in automatic license plate recognition and has been studied for decades. A method using multiscale template matching is proposed to settle the problem of CS for Chinese license plates. It is carried out on a binary image integrated from maximally stable extremal region detection and Otsu thresholding. Afterward, a uniform harrow-shaped template with variable length is designed, by virtue of which a three-dimensional matching space is constructed for searching of candidate segmentations. These segmentations are detected at matches with local minimum responses. Finally, the vertical boundaries of each single character are located for subsequent recognition. Experiments on a data set including 2349 license plate images of different quality levels show that the proposed method can achieve a higher accuracy at comparable time cost and is robust to images in poor conditions.