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What is a Vehicle Identification Number

A Vehicle Identification Number, or VIN, is a car's unique alphanumeric ID, much like a human fingerprint. No two cars in the world have the same sequence, and the VIN number can be used to find out everything you need to know about a particular vehicle.Most automobiles on the road today have a 17-character vehicle identification number, as this was made standard on all cars in 1981. Cars manufactured for other countries may have fewer characters in the VIN.It is made up of a combination of letters and numbers which signify specific details about the car, including country of manufacture, make (e.g.

Ford), model (e.g. Taurus), year, restraint system, engine type and more.Although some of the characters will be the same for similar vehicles, all VIN numbers contain a numerical sequence that identifies that particular model.

In the 17-character sequence, the last 6 characters serve this purpose.The benefits of the Vehicle Identification Number are numerous.If a car is stolen, authorities can easily identify a recovered vehicle, even if the license plates were switched. The VIN number can be found on the driver's side dashboard as well as the driver's side door post.It is also quite useful when shopping for a used car.

Using the VIN, you can get a full vehicle history report on any car which will contain valuable information such as hidden problems, mileage readings, ownership transfers, emissions tests and more.The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) has a huge database of vehicle identification numbers, and every time an owner reports a problem to his or her insurance company, it is recorded. So any time you are in the market for a used car, make sure you jot down the VIN Number and get a vehicle history report before you buy to make sure the car is clean.Besides the two locations on the car itself, the vehicle identification number can be found on the insurance card and the title or registration, so if you're curious about what your VIN is you can check in these places as well.

.David Bloom has been researching the automotive industry for years, and is a contributing editor for several web sites, including Vehicle Identification Numbers and VIN Reports. .Article Source:


By: David Bloom

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