Carbapenem resistance in Acinetobacter baumannii is a growing public health concern and is most often mediated by OXA carbapenemases. We describe a novel multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay able to detect and distinguish alleles encoding three subgroups of acquired OXA carbapenemases (OXA-23-like, OXA-24-like and OXA-58-like) that are scattered in Acinetobacter spp., and a fourth subgroup, OXA-51-like, which appears to be intrinsic to Acinetobacter baumannii. Isolates belonging to two prevalent UK A. baumannii 'OXA' clones (OXA-23 clones 1 and 2) had alleles encoding both an intrinsic OXA-51-like and an acquired OXA-23 enzyme, whereas isolates of the 'SE clone' had only an intrinsic bla(OXA-51-like) allele. Genes encoding OXA-58 were detected (with bla(OXA-51-like)) in a cluster of related isolates from a single hospital. This simple assay will assist in monitoring the mechanisms responsible for carbapenem resistance in Acinetobacter spp.