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What Does My Bmw Vin Number Mean?

What Does My Bmw Vin Number Mean
BMW VIN Codes (Vehicle Identification Number) – Vehicle identification numbers (also called VINs) are critical pieces of information for identifying the exact BMW you have and the engine that was put into it when it was built. A car‘s vehicle identification number (VIN) is the automotive equivalent of human DNA.
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What each digit of a VIN means?

World Manufacturer Identifier – The first three digits of a vehicle’s VIN make up the World Manufacturer Identifier (WMI).

The first digit defines the country of origin or the final point of assembly of your vehicle.The second digit indicates the manufacturer and the region where your vehicle was produced. The third digit, when coupled with the first two digits, indicates your vehicle’s type or manufacturing division.

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How do I identify my BMW?

Where can I find my BMW’s VIN? – Your BMW’s VIN can be found printed on your vehicle. The most common locations are on the inside frame or jamb of the driver-side front door, or on the dashboard near the base of the windscreen on the driver’s side. To make identifying a VIN easier, remember that a valid VIN consists of exactly 17 letters and numbers.

If you can’t find your VIN on your vehicle or some of the characters aren’t clear, you should be able to find your VIN on your vehicle’s registration or insurance documents. You can confirm your VIN by checking it online and comparing the returned information to what you know about your vehicle. To reduce the risk of confusion, VINs never include the letters I/i, O/o and Q/q, which can easily be mistaken for the numbers 1 and 0.

If you’re having trouble decoding your VIN, double-check that you haven’t misread any of the characters.
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What do the first 3 digits of a VIN mean?

First 3 Digits – World Manufacturer Identifier (WMI) – The first three digits of the VIN are classified as the WMI, and show the country of origin, manufacturer, and specific division within a manufacturer.1st – A letter or number showing where in the world the car was built Remember the following:

A-H – AfricaJ-R – AsiaS-Z – Europe1-5 – North America6-7 – Australia and New Zealand8-9 – South America

2 nd – The manufacturer that made the car A full list of manufacturers and their associated VIN codes can be found, here,3 rd – The specific division of a manufacturer that made the car For example, Mercedes’ AMG division’s VIN is WMX.
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What does the first number of the VIN number tell you?

How do we know where our vehicles are made? –

Here is where you can find UAW made products, vehicles and how to read your VIN. WHAT IS A VIN AND HOW DO I READ THE NUMBER? In 1954, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) began requiring standardized VIN’s for all road vehicles.

Most people believe the VIN is just a series of random numbers and letters. But these characters are highly structured codes which have their own meaning. Vehicles from model year 1981 to present have a VIN made up of 17 characters (letters and numbers).

Front of the engine block. This should be easy to spot by popping open the hood, and looking at the front of the engine. Front of the car frame, near the container that holds windshield washer fluid. Rear wheel well. Try looking up, directly above the tire. Inside the driver-side doorjamb. Open the door and look underneath where the side-view mirror would be located if the door was shut. Driver-side doorpost. Open the door and look near the spot where the door latches, not too far from the seatbelt return. Underneath the spare tire.

The first character of the VIN indicates the country in which the vehicle was manufactured. VIN’s starting with 1, 4, and 5 are manufactured in the United States. The third number or letter is used by the vehicle manufacturer to identify what kind of vehicle it is: car, truck, bus, etc. The 10 th character of the VIN indicates the model year. : How to Read Your Vin | UAW
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What do the 17 VIN numbers mean?

VIN characters 10-17 The rest of the characters in your VIN are part of the ‘Vehicle Identifier Section’. The 10th character refers to the model year of your vehicle. The 11th character refers to the manufacturing plant that made the vehicle. Characters 12 through 17 include the vehicle’s production number.
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What are the 3 numbers under VIN?

World manufacturer identifier – The first three characters uniquely identify the manufacturer of the vehicle using the world manufacturer identifier or WMI code. A manufacturer who builds fewer than 1,000 vehicles per year uses a 9 as the third digit, and the 12th, 13th and 14th position of the VIN for a second part of the identification.

  1. Some manufacturers use the third character as a code for a vehicle category (e.g., bus or truck), a division within a manufacturer, or both.
  2. For example, within 1G (assigned to General Motors in the United States), 1G1 represents Chevrolet passenger cars; 1G2, Pontiac passenger cars; and 1GC, Chevrolet trucks,
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The Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) in the US assigns WMIs to countries and manufacturers. The first character of the WMI is typically the region in which the manufacturer is located although there are exceptions e.g. the WMI 7SA was assigned to Tesla Inc.

In the United States in 2021. In practice, each is assigned to a country of manufacture, although in Europe the country where the continental headquarters is located can assign the WMI to all vehicles produced in that region (Example: Opel/Vauxhall cars whether produced in Germany, Spain, the United Kingdom or Poland carry a WMI of W0L because Adam Opel AG is based in Rüsselsheim, Germany).

In the notation below, assume that letters precede numbers and that zero is the last number. For example, 8X–82 denotes the range 8X, 8Y, 8Z, 81, 82, excluding 80.
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Can a VIN number tell you the make and model?

What is a VIN Number (Vehicle Identification Number)? –

How many characters: 17 (digits and capital letters)
Where to find: Dashboard on the driver’s side
First digit stands for: Country of manufacturer

A vehicle identification number (VIN) is a unique code assigned to every motor vehicle when it’s manufactured. The VIN is a 17-character string of letters and numbers without intervening spaces or the letters Q (q), I (i), and O (o); these are omitted to avoid confusion with the numerals 0 and 1.
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Can you tell car features by VIN?

Download Article Download Article A Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) is a 17-digit unique code given to a vehicle upon its production. It tells you the manufacturer, place of production, and the car’s options. It is also useful information when talking to body shops and dealerships about the specifics of your vehicle, or when you’re buying a used car and want to learn more about its history.

  1. 1 Find a website to give you details about the car. There are a variety of websites that offer VIN lookup services. These websites will ask you to enter a car’s VIN, and then will supply you with information about the car’s options.
    • Run an internet search for “free VIN lookup” or “free VIN decoder.”
    • There are websites that provide free VIN lookup services. For example, try:
    • While some free VIN report services provide every detail of a car’s options, others do not.
    • Some websites offer an advanced search for a fee.
  2. 2 Enter your VIN. After you’ve found a website where you can look up your VIN, enter it in full. This is the most important step, and you need to follow the website’s directions. If you don’t, your search might not work or it might return incorrect data.
    • Follow the directions on the website and then press “search.”
    • Some websites may ask you to omit certain parts of the VIN number.


  3. 3 Review the VIN detail report. After submitting the VIN number, you’ll get a report back. The report will detail the specifications of the car as it was produced by the manufacturer.
    • The VIN report should include options, such as the transmission, the trim, and emissions specifications.
    • The VIN report should include anything that was changed in the production process.
    • VIN detail reports may not include options added after manufacturer, added at the dealership, or added by the consumer after the initial sale.
    • Depending on the website, you may need to pay a fee for your VIN report.
    • Make sure the title on the car is clear, meaning it doesn’t have any history or current status as a salvaged vehicle, and there isn’t any type of lien on the car.
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  1. 1 Visit the manufacturer’s website. Once you’ve got the VIN number, log on to the internet and visit the manufacturer’s website. The carmaker’s website will contain resources that will help you decode the VIN and understand what each number means.
    • Find the VIN decoder or search section of the website. Almost all manufacturers have a VIN decoder or similar tool on their website.
    • Search through the tabs or search bar for “VIN decoder” or “VIN search.”
    • Click on the page or,pdf file that gives you information about decoding the VIN. For example, visit
  2. 2 Look at the world manufacturer identifier. The world manufacturer identifiers are the first 3 letters or numbers at the beginning of the VIN. This will give you information about the type of vehicle and where it was produced.
    • The first number/letter tells the region the car was manufactured in, for example, “North America.”
    • The second number tells the country.
    • The third number tells the type of vehicle, for example “light truck.”
    • Many different vehicles will share their first 3 numbers/letters.
  3. 3 Identify the second sequence of numbers. The second sequence, numbers and letters 4 through 8, tell you more information about manufacturer options. By decoding these numbers, you’ll learn about the features the vehicle was manufactured with. These numbers will tell you info about the:
    • Engine
    • Model
    • Body style,
  4. 4 Skip the ninth digit. This is the digit used to verify that it is not a fraudulent VIN. It cannot be used to find information about the car. This digit is called a “check digit.”
    • If you suspect the vehicle has a fake VIN number, contact the manufacturer.
    • To decode this number, you may have to bring your car into a dealership.
  5. 5 View the tenth digit. The tenth digit will tell you the model year of the vehicle. This is important to knowing the options on the vehicle, as different model years are equipped with different option group packages.
    • This does not indicate what year the car was built. For example, if the car was a 2010 Chevrolet Equinox, it might have been constructed in late 2009
    • This information should also be available in the vehicle’s manual or on other paperwork associated with the car.
  6. 6 Find the last 7 digits. Along with the second sequence of numbers, these last digits are perhaps the most important for finding the options of the vehicle. They will give you all the car specific information you’re looking for.
    • You’ll only be able to decode this information on the car manufacturer’s website.
    • These numbers should give you information like that listed on the original sticker of the car.
    • The numbers will also tell you in what specific plant the vehicle was built as well as production-specific information.
  7. 7 Read about common options. While manufacturers use different codes to represent different options, the information encoded in the last 7 digits of your VIN number will provide specifics about a number of options. These numbers, which are actually your car’s serial number, will give you info about common options like:
    • Trim color
    • Power seats and windows
    • Entertainment system
    • Seat covering material
    • Sunroof
    • Equipment packages like off road or towing
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  1. 1 Submit your VIN to a third-party website. There are several companies that compile and sell vehicle history reports. A vehicle history report is a comprehensive history that includes data on a vehicle’s manufacture, sales, and sometimes repair information. Try websites like:
    • Carfax
    • Autocheck
  2. 2 Pay a fee. After submitting your VIN, the third-party website may prompt you to pay a fee for a complete vehicle history report. While you may not want to pay, it is standard for companies to charge for this service.
    • Feel free to shop around. Different websites or companies may offer different prices. In addition, some companies may run promos on vehicle history reports at different times.
    • Fees normally range from between $20 to $40 to receive a full vehicle history report.
    • Some websites may provide cheaper rates per report if you want several vehicle history reports. For example, you may be able to get 5 reports for $59.99.
  3. 3 Examine the report. Once you get your report back, you’ll need to take a good look at it so you can get a good idea of the car’s history, options, and other information. When reading the report:
    • Verify the report matches the VIN you submitted.
    • Read about the car’s production and the vehicle’s repair and registration history in the report.
    • Look to see if the vehicle has been repaired or if the report shows any evidence of aftermarket upgrades.
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  1. 1 Find the VIN on the car, if you have access to it. Most vehicles have the VIN etched or in the form of a sticker on at least 2 parts of the car. Look for the VIN on:
    • The driver’s side in the door jamb
    • The driver’s side dashboard
    • Metal within the engine compartment
    • Parts of car that can’t be removed
    • When you find the VIN, it’s a good idea to make sure it matches the number on the title for the vehicle.
  2. 2 Look for the VIN on paperwork associated with the car. While you should be able to find the VIN on the actual car, it might be easier to find it on the car’s paperwork. This will come in handy if you don’t physically have the car, but have some paperwork associated with it. Look on the:
    • Title
    • Registration
    • Repair records
  3. 3 Ask the seller for the VIN. If you don’t own the car yet and can’t access it, you can ask the seller of the car for the VIN. The seller will be able to find the VIN just like you could – through paperwork or by looking on the body of the car.
    • Make sure the seller provides you with the entire 17-digit VIN number before you commit to buying the vehicle.
    • The seller should happily give you the number so that you can do an independent vehicle history search. If they don’t, they may be hiding something.
    • Keep in mind that between 1954-1981 there was no standard format for VINs. The best source for information on a vehicle would be to contact the original manufacturer.
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Add New Question

  • Question Why is my antique car’s VIN too short? Bryan Hamby is the owner of Auto Broker Club, a trusted auto brokerage in Los Angeles, California. He founded Auto Broker Club in 2014 out of a passion for cars and a unique talent for customizing the car dealership process to be on the buyer’s side. With 1,400+ deals closed, and a 90% customer retention rate, Bryan’s focus is to simplify the car buying experience through transparency, fair pricing, and world class customer service. Professional Auto Broker Expert Answer Between 1954 and 1981, there was no standard format for VINs. Try contacting the original manufacturer for information on the vehicle.
  • Question How do I find out the options on a used 2013 RAV4 Limited? Call a Toyota dealer with the VIN, and they will get you a Build Out Sheet showing all the features and options.
  • Question How do I decode a VIN for a 2015 Nissan Altima SV? 如何为2015款尼桑 Altima SV 解码车辆识别码? AutobestMing Community Answer You can go to a site that offers the service like and click on the “Select Vehicle by VIN” tab.

Ask a Question 200 characters left Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered. Submit Advertisement

If you live in the U.S., you can use your VIN number to find out if your car has been subject to a recall through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website. As a small thank you, we’d like to offer you a $30 gift card (valid at Use it to try out great new products and services nationwide without paying full price—wine, food delivery, clothing and more. Enjoy!


  • Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)
  • Manufacturer’s website
  • $20 to $40 fee for a vehicle history report

Article Summary X To use a VIN number to check a car’s options, go the manufacturer’s website and find the VIN decoder section. Then, use the last 7 digits of your VIN to learn about specific options like trim color, seat covering material, and power seats and windows.

  1. Alternatively, enter in your VIN number on a VIN decoding site to find out about options such as the transmission, trim, and emission specifications.
  2. However, be aware that these sites may charge a fee for an advanced search or a detailed VIN report.
  3. For more advice, including how to obtain a vehicle’s sales and repair information, keep reading.

Did this summary help you? Thanks to all authors for creating a page that has been read 945,019 times.
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What do BMW numbers and letters mean?

BMW Series and Models Breakdown: – There are currently 10 different groups in the BMW lineup, separated into numerical and letter distinctions. The 2 series through the 8 series are a range coupe and sedan-like cars, with MSRP increasing respectively with each series number.

2 Series – a two-door coupe and convertible that is smallest in size and lowest in price 3 Series – a four-door compact sedan available as a sports wagon (Touring) or slightly larger Gran Turismo 4 Series – a compact two-door coupe also available as a convertible or as a four-door Gran Coupe 5 Series – a quintessential midsize four-door sedan available in standard gas, plug-in hybrid, and high-performance options 7 Series – a full-size four-door sedan available in a high-performance M sedan and an ALPINA sedan 8 Series – a top luxury full-size modern coupe available as a convertible, a four-door Gran Coupe, or as M coupes. X Models – a series of larger SUVs and crossovers from the X1 to X7, with available M models Z Models – a two-door convertible roadster M Models – Versions of select BMM series and X models that offer higher performance (e.g. the X3 is also available as X3 M) BMW i Models – BMW’s electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles, both a unique model and as hybrid options (like the 530e plug-in hybrid)

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What does a 5 at the beginning of a VIN mean?

Here’s How to Tell Where Your Vehicle Was Assembled – It’s often hard for the average consumer to know where the products he or she buys are made. That’s because many manufacturers go to great lengths to hide the fact that their products are not made in the USA by workers making a decent wage.

  1. In the automobile industry, many vehicles are sourced from multiple countries.
  2. So that nice new car you buy that you thought was made in the United States may have been made in Mexico or elsewhere.
  3. Using the 2018 UAW Union-Built Buying Guide is one way to ensure you are making a purchase that protects decent-paying jobs at home.

If you look at the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN), you can get an early clue on where the vehicle was made. A VIN beginning with a 1, 4, or 5 indicates that the vehicle was assembled in the United States; a VIN beginning with a 2 indicates it was assembled in Canada; a VIN beginning with a 3 indicates the vehicle was made in Mexico. tags buy union, Chrysler, FCA, fiat chrysler, Ford, General Motors, GM, UAW-Made, Union Made, vehicle identification number, VIN Other users read these articles next.
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What does 2 at the front of the VIN mean?

1, 2, 3, 4, 5 are made in North America.6 and 7 are made in Oceania.8 and 9 are made in South America. Position 2. The second letter or number, in combination with the first letter or number in the VIN, tells you in what country the car or.
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What can I find out from a VIN number?

How to Decode Your VIN – If you’re curious or need to access the information that your VIN provides, you can do a VIN check. To do so, Vin Check says you should simply search for a VIN decoder online and enter your VIN there. VIN information is collected by the National Highway Safety Administration (NHTSA) from manufacturers who submit this data to the organization.

First character : This represents the country in which the vehicle was manufactured. Second character : This character indicates the manufacturer’s name. Third character : With this character, you can find out what the vehicle type or division is. Fourth to eighth character : This range of characters tells you more about your vehicle, for instance, the engine size and type, vehicle brand, model, series, and body style. Ninth character : This character provides you with the security check digit. Tenth character : Here you can view your vehicle’s model year. Eleventh character : This character informs you of the assembly plant where your car was produced. Twelfth to seventeenth character : This range of characters provide you with your vehicle’s serial number.

A VIN decoder lookup will only work for vehicles that were made after 1981, as models that were produced before that time feature a VIN that probably consists of only 11 characters, which means that modern VIN decoders will not recognize the character string.
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