Finding your Toyota VIN (Vehicle Identification Number)

The Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) is your Toyota’s legal identifier, and is applied to your car during production.

Each VIN is unique, and is usually a 17-character code made up of letters and numbers, and reveals important details about your vehicle. As well as containing information on the time and place of your car’s creation, it also contains information about its specification and design.

First introduced in 1954, Vehicle Identification Numbers are an important component in determining the history and identity of a vehicle, particularly when combined with the car’s DVLA licence plate and V5 or V5C documents.

While licence plates can be altered, the car’s VIN remains unchanged, and therefore is the primary identification number for your Toyota.

How to locate your Vehicle Identification Number

In most modern Toyota cars, you’ll find a visible VIN through a special cut-out at the bottom of the windscreen. Additional VINs are printed on tamper-proof stickers located just inside the shut line of the front nearside door. Earlier models may have a metal plate instead of a sticker.

The VIN is repeated on the vehicle’s chassis, stamped into the metal floor of the car under the right-hand (driver’s side) front seat. It’s usually visible through a small flap, deliberately cut into the vehicle’s carpet.

Of course, there are some important exceptions to the rule…

These include the four-door Hilux pick-up – in which the tamper-proof sticker is mounted just inside the nearside rear door, and the five-door Aygo – in which it is applied to the body just inside the offside rear door shut.

Decoding your Vehicle Identification Number

Although there are exceptions to the rule, the first three digits usually refer to the country of manufacture, the vehicle maker and the vehicle type.

For example, if you check the first letter of the code, ‘J’ references Japan, ‘S’ references England, while ‘V’ identifies France. Turkey gets an ‘N’, while Thailand and South Africa (where some of our Hilux vehicles are produced) get an ‘M’ and ‘A’ respectively.

The second letter is usually ‘T’, which describes Toyota, the third describes which group of cars (or sometimes which chassis type) the vehicle sits on.

The next six numbers reference the car’s body style, engine and gearbox, while the remaining eight is a combination unique to the car, listing the year the car was made, the factory it was produced in and where it came in the production process.

For more on your VIN, please contact your nearest dealer, or visit toyota.co.uk/mytoyota

222 comments

  1. Hi, I’m trying to find the production date of my “S” reg. Corolla S468 RLA (registered in August 1998). The VIN has a “0” at position 10 so this doesn’t help.
    Please let me know the production date.
    Thanks

  2. Hi can anyone tell me where to find the six digit version number needed to access my service history for my 09 Prius. Either on the V5C/3 or on the car? Toyota why is this made difficult by not providing clear guidance on my Toyota. I can’t be the only one to struggle to find it!

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