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Free VIN Lookup & Decoder

What is a VIN (Vehicle Identification Number)?

Every vehicle is assigned a distinct 17-digit identifier known as a VIN, or Vehicle Identification Number. This code provides crucial details such as the vehicle’s production location and date, its manufacturer, and its specific features and options. Additionally, the VIN can be used to access a vehicle’s history through services like BADVIN, which maintains a comprehensive record based on this number.
The VIN includes a special code to confirm its authenticity, beneficial for buyers, lenders, and legal professionals who need to verify the vehicle’s legitimacy.
An example VIN is as follows: 5TETU62N85Z130001. This format was established by the International Standards Organization (ISO) in 1981 and is used for all vehicles produced today. The digits in the VIN can range from zero to nine and include any letter except "I", "O", and "Q" to prevent confusion with the numbers one and zero.
The VIN can be segmented for easier interpretation, such as 5TE-TU62N-N-8-5-Z1-30001. Further details on what each segment represents will be provided below.
Here are some VIN examples for various vehicle types and models:
VIN Decoder

What Does Each Number Represent in a VIN?

A vehicle's VIN number provides extensive information about it. The initial digit reveals the manufacturing country. The following two digits identify the vehicle's manufacturer and category. The subsequent five digits describe key vehicle characteristics like the brand and size.
The ninth digit serves as a security check to confirm the VIN's authenticity from the manufacturer. The model year is indicated by the tenth digit. The eleventh digit specifies the assembly plant (refer to the table below). The final six digits constitute the vehicle's serial number.
VIN breakdown
VIN DigitMeaningVIN DigitMeaning
1stCountry10thYear
2ndRegion / Maker11thAssembly Plant
3rdVehicle Type12thSequential Number
4thVehicle Attributes13thSequential Number
5thVehicle Attributes14thSequential Number
6thVehicle Attributes15thSequential Number
7thVehicle Attributes16thSequential Number
8thVehicle Attributes17thSequential Number
9thCheck digit

World Manufacturer Identifier (WMI)

The first segment of the VIN, known as the WMI, consists of the initial three digits. This code identifies the country of manufacture, the manufacturer itself, and the type of vehicle. Manufacturers producing fewer than 1000 vehicles annually use '9' as the third digit and allocate the fourth to sixth digits for additional identification.
Country Identification
The very first letter of the VIN, ranging from A to Z, specifies the country where the vehicle was produced. For example, a VIN beginning with "AA" to "AH" signifies that the vehicle was manufactured in South Africa.
1st WMI DigitRegionWMICountry
A–CAfricaAA* – AH*South Africa
J–RAsiaJ**Japan
KL* – KR*South Korea
L**China
MA* – ME*India
MF* – MK*Indonesia
ML* – MR*Thailand
MS*Myanmar
NL* – NR*Turkey
PA* – PE*Philippines
PL* – PR*Malaysia
RF* – RG*Taiwan
S–ZEuropeSA* – SM*United Kingdom
SN* – ST*Germany
W**Germany
SU* – SZ*Poland
TA* – TH*Switzerland
TJ* – TP*Czech Republic
TR* – TV*Hungary
TW* – T1*Portugal
VA* – VE*Austria
VF* – VR*France
VS* – VW*Spain
VX* – V2*Yugoslavia
XL* – XM*Netherlands
XS* – XW*USSR
X3* – X0*Russia
YA* – YE*Belgium
YF* – YK*Finland
YS* – YW*Sweden
ZA* – ZR*Italy
1–5North America1**United States
4**United States
5**United States
2**Canada
3**Mexico
6–7Oceania6A* – 6W*Australia
7A* – 7E*New Zealand
8–9South America8A* – 8E*Argentina
8F* – 8J*Chile
8L* – 8R*Ecuador
8X* – 82*Venezuela
9A* – 9E*Brazil
93* – 99*Brazil
9F* – 9J*Colombia
Manufacturer
The second character of the VIN reveals the vehicle’s manufacturer. For example, '1FD' signifies that Ford Motor Company in the United States manufactured the vehicle.
WMIManufacturerWMIManufacturerWMIManufacturer
1FTFord Motor Company1FUFreightlinerWAUAudi
1FDFord Motor Company1FVFreightliner1XKKenworth USA
1GCChevrolet1HTInternational Truck1NPPeterbilt
1GTGMC TruckJH2Honda1NKKenworth
1GTGMC Truck1XPPeterbilt1M2Mack Trucks
4X4Forest River1FMFord Motor Company2GCChevrolet
1GBChevrolet1HDHarley-Davidson2FTFord Motor Company
1GDGMCJYAYamaha Motor1FAFord Motor Company
4YDKeystone1G1Chevrolet1GNChevrolet
WBABMWWF0Ford Motor CompanyWVWVolkswagen
Vehicle Type
The third digit of the VIN specifies the type of vehicle, such as '1G1' indicating a Chevrolet passenger car.

Vehicle Descriptor Section (VDS)

The VDS spans the fourth to the eighth characters of the VIN and provides details about the vehicle's specific features, which vary by manufacturer. Common information encoded here includes:
Vehicle Attributes: Characteristics like engine type, body style, and restraint system.
Check Digit: The ninth character, serving as a security code to verify the VIN's authenticity, calculated through a prescribed mathematical formula.

Vehicle Identifier Section (VIS)

The VIS comprises the characters from the tenth to the seventeenth positions in the VIN, detailing:
Year: The 10th character denotes the model year based on a standard VIN-to-Year chart, e.g., 'A' for 1980, 'B' for 1981, etc.
CodeYearCodeYearCodeYearCodeYearCodeYear
A1980M199122002D2013R2024
B1981N199232003E2014S2025
C1982P199342004F2015T2026
D1983R199452005G2016V2027
E1984S199562006H2017W2028
F1985T199672007J2018X2029
G1986V199782008K2019Y2030
H1987W199892009L202012031
J1988X1999A2010M202122032
K1989Y2000B2011N202232033
L199012001C2012P202342034
Assembly Plant: The 11th character identifies the manufacturing plant, with each manufacturer using unique codes for their plants.
Sequential Number: The last six characters (12th to 17th) represent the vehicle's serial number, issued in sequential order by the manufacturer.
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The Importance of VIN Decoder

For Consumers
A VIN decoder is a crucial tool for consumers considering the purchase of a used vehicle. It provides detailed insights into the vehicle’s history, enabling buyers to make well-informed decisions and avoid cars with potential hidden issues.
For Dealerships and Resellers
Dealerships and resellers utilize VIN decoder services to assess the value of their inventory and provide transparent information to potential buyers, thereby enhancing trust and credibility.
For Regulatory Bodies
VIN decoding is essential for law enforcement and regulatory agencies for conducting investigations and ensuring compliance with automotive regulations, making it a vital instrument for maintaining road safety.
A VIN Decoder service clarifies the otherwise complex sequence of characters in a vehicle's identification number, offering access to critical information. Whether it’s a consumer seeking a dependable used car, a dealership focused on transparent operations, or a regulatory body enforcing laws, VIN decoder services are invaluable for deciphering any vehicle's essential details.

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Frequently asked questions
Yes, it is generally safe to share your VIN online for decoding, as the VIN is a public figure and does not contain sensitive personal information.
VIN decoding does not directly reveal maintenance history; however, it can identify the vehicle model and year, which you can use to access maintenance records through service databases with the VIN.
While a VIN decoder can provide the model year that can suggest warranty status, verifying the actual warranty status usually requires direct contact with the manufacturer or dealer.
A VIN decoder can provide detailed information about a vehicle, including its manufacturing location, model year, engine type, and equipment details.
Yes, VIN decoding can help in legal situations by providing verified vehicle information, which can be crucial in cases of theft, accidents, or disputes over vehicle identity.
The last six digits of a VIN are the vehicle's unique serial number, which identifies the specific unit among others from the same model and production line.
VIN decoding can prevent fraud in the sale of vehicle vehicles by ensuring the vehicle's details match those recorded officially, thus confirming its identity and legality.
While not necessary, decoding a VIN for a routine service appointment can provide the mechanic with precise model information, facilitating accurate service and parts replacement.
Yes, in many cases, you can determine the type of drivetrain a vehicle has from its VIN if the manufacturer encodes this information within the VIN.
By entering the VIN into a VIN decoder, you can check if there are any recalls specific to that vehicle vehicle model and year based on its unique history.
The information on vehicles provided here is supplied by third parties; BADVIN.ORG is not responsible for the accuracy of any information. BADVIN.ORG provides all service and materials without representations or warranties of any kind, either expressed or implied. Use BADVIN search and reports along with certified vehicle inspection and test drive. See Terms of Use for more details. All other logos, brands and designated trademarks are the property of their respective holders.