Vehicle Identification Number
The Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) is a seventeen-digit alpha/numeric sequence stamped on a plate which is located at the top, left-hand side of the instrument panel.
Fig. The VIN is a 17-digit sequence stamped into a plate, visible through the windshield
As far as the car owner is concerned, many of the digits in the VIN are of little or no value. At certain times, it may be necessary to refer to the VIN to interpret certain information, such as when ordering replacement parts or determining if your vehicle is involved in a factory service campaign (recall). In either of these instances, the following information may be helpful:
1st digit - indicates the place of manufacture. A
designates the USA;
8th digit - indicates the type and the manufacturer of the original engine which was installed in the vehicle (see Engine).
10th digit - indicates the model year of the vehicle.
designates a 1988 model,
is for 1989, and so on.
11th digit - indicates the specific plant at which the vehicle was assembled.
12th-17th digits - this is the plant sequential number, which identifies the specific number of each vehicle within a production run. In the event of engineering change or a recall involving only a certain quantity of vehicles within a production run, the affected vehicles can be identified.
Fig. Typical Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) breakdown