Understanding Cowl Tags & VIN Tags
The cowl tag or trim tag as it is sometimes called contains all of the important manufacturer's information about the vehicle it is attached to. For example it contains the build date of the vehicle as well as the paint color and interior options. Reading and deciphering the code on a cowl tag is not as difficult as it seems.
The build date on the cowl tag is represented by three figures beginning with two digits which are followed by a letter, these three figures represent the manufacturers assembly date. Example 10 B, 10 represents October, B represents the second week of that month.
A decoded tag. Color co-ordinated digits circled in white represent Chevrolet model this one is a Chevelle. The digit 7 circled in yellow represents year built 1967. The letter B circled in green represents the plant of origin, B is for Baltimore. The remaining digits represent the sequential production number of this vehicle. This was the 164,678th Chevelle built in 1967.
05E Month of May 5th week
Decoding the VIN number.
The first five digits of the VIN number represent the body style. For example, 13817 represents the Chevelle body style.
The first of these five digits is 1 which represents the division, which in this case is Chevrolet.
The second digit 3 represents the fact that this vehicle is a Super Sport version of the Chevelle body style.
The third digit in this particular instance is 8 which denotes the engine as being an eight cylinder or V-8 engine.
The fourth & fifth digits are read as the number seventeen. 17 translates into a 2 door sport coupe, 5 passenger.
The sixth digit identifies the year of the vehicle. Example
7 equals 1967.
Then seventh comes a letter that represents the plant where the vehicle was built, example B equals Baltimore.
The last six digits are the sequential unit number assigned by the main production office example 100001 would be the very first Chevelle built in 1966. Someone knows which plant built it but we don‘t. In this case the six digits tell us that this was the 164,678th Chevelle vehicle built by GM
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