For vehicles manufactured before 1981, the unique Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) code given to each vehicle is created from using a 13-digit sequence of letters and numbers.

Each character in the sequence provides certain information about the vehicle, such as manufacturer, place of origin, place of assembly, model year, and vehicle type. To decode the 13-digit VIN number, you must understand what each character in the sequence means.

Step 1

Examine the first digit of the VIN number to find the manufacturer country of origin. Vehicles manufactuered in the United States will have a 1, 4 or 5 as the first digit in the VIN number code,…