Determine Model Year

Model Year definition
A vehicle’s Model Year is categorically defined by the 10th digit of the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN), and simply indicates any manufacturer-specified evolution in mid-cycle of a model range - such as new engine or transmission introductions, revised trim options or any other minor specification changes. The 10th VIN digit does not relate to the calendar year which the car is built, although the two may coincide. For example, a vehicle produced between July 2006 and June 2007 may have a 7 as the 10th digit of the VIN, and another vehicle produced between July 2007 and June 2008 may have an 8 in the 10th digit - with the change-over date varying depending on manufacturer, model and year.

Model Year encoding
The Model Year is encoded by either a letter or digit. Besides the three letters that are not allowed in the VIN itself (I, O and Q), the letters U and Z and the digit 0 are not used for the Model Year code.

The year 1980 was encoded by some manufacturers, especially General Motors, as "A" (since the 17-digit VIN was not mandatory until 1981, and the "A" or zero was in the manufacturer's pre-1981 placement in the VIN). Subsequent years increment through the allowed letters, so that "Y" represents the year 2000. 2001 to 2009 are encoded as the digits 1 to 9, and subsequent years are encoded as "A", "B", "C", etc.

How to retrieve the vehicle’s Model Year?
1. Verify the 10th digit of the VIN from the vehicle’s registration documents or the vehicle’s chassis number / visible VIN.
2. Retrieve the vehicle’s applicable Model Year by the corresponding letter/number in below Code/Year transposition chart.

CodeYear CodeYear
A =1980L =1990
B =1981M =1991
C =1982N =1992
D =1983P =1993
E =1984R =1994
F =1985S =1995
G =1986T =1996
H =1987V =1997
J =1988W =1998
K =1989X =1999

CodeYear CodeYear
Y =2000A =2010
1 =2001B =2011
2 =2002C =2012
3 =2003D =2013
4 =2004E =2014
5 =2005F =2015
6 =2006G =2016
7 =2007H =2017
8 =2008J =2018
9 =2009K =2019

CodeYear CodeYear
L =2020Y =2030
M =20211 =2031
N =20222 =2032
P =20233 =2033
R =20244 =2034
S =20255 =2035
T =20266 =2036
V =20277 =2037
W =20288 =2038
X =20299 =2039