DeLorean VINs are no different than any other vehicle VIN out there. But, since there were so few DeLoreans built (9,080 to be precise, according to Barrie Wills) our VINs are almost identical, except for the mathematical check digit, and the ‘serial number’ of each car – that is, the last 5 digits. All DeLoreans were built in Dunmurry, Northern Ireland, and all were built in either 1981, 1982, or 1983.
It’s also important to note that the ‘serial numbers’ jumped through the production years. The first manufactured vehicle is known as “500” (00500), and each car manufactured in 1981 had a (presumably) sequential number. The 1982 model year DeLoreans jumped the serial numbers to start at 10,000. And 1983 model year DeLoreans start at 15,000.
Also interesting to note, is the “Month and year of manufacture” stamp. While all 1981 DeLoreans were built in 1981, early 1982 model cars were built in December of 1981. And the 1983 model cars were mostly built in mid-1982, but were unfinished when the factory was shut down. During receivership, those unfinished vehicles were completed and numbered with 15,000 and higher serial numbers.
To understand more about how all vehicle VINs breakdown, here’s a re-print of an article from Research Maniacs:
We will go through all 17 positions here so you can decode any VIN number. You will become a VIN decoding expert!
World Manufacturer Identifier (WMI)
The first three letters and numbers of the VIN are the World Manufacturer Identifier.
Position 1 – “Country of manufacture”
The very first letter or number of the VIN tells you in what region of the world your vehicle was made. Match the letter or number below to the first number or letter of your VIN to find out in what region of the world your VIN was made.
- A, B, C, D, E, F, G, and H are made in Africa
- J, K, L, M, N, P, and R are made Asia
- S, T, U, V, W, X, Y, and Z are made in Europe
- 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 are made in North America
- 6 and 7 are made in Oceania
- 8 and 9 are made in South America
[DeLoreans were built in Ireland, so the REGION is “Europe”]
Position 2 – “Vehicle manufacturer”
The second letter or number, in combination with the first letter or number in the VIN, tells you in what country the car or truck was made. You may be surprised to know that not all Japanese cars are made in Japan and not all GM cars are made in America and so on. Anyway, cars and trucks are made in over 80 countries and there are over 600 VIN country codes. You can see all the codes and find where your car or truck was made by going to Where is my car or truck made.
[DeLoreans were built in Ireland, so the COUNTRY is “United Kingdom”]
Position 3 – “Vehicle type”
The third number or letter is used by the vehicle manufacturer to identify what kind of vehicle it is. It could be a car, truck, bus and so on. Each vehicle maker uses different codes for this so go to the Automobile Manufacturer website for your vehicle to find out what the third position in the VIN means for your particular vehicle.
[DeLoreans are classified as “Passenger Vehicle”]
Vehicle Descriptor Section (VDS)
Letters and numbers in positions 4 through 9 is the Vehicle Descriptor Section. This information gives detailed information about the vehicle itself.
Positions 4 5 6 7 8 – “Brand, body style, engine size and type, model, series”
Here you can find out the vehicle model, engine type, body style and things like that. Each vehicle maker uses different codes for this so go to the Automobile Manufacturer for your vehicle to get the codes.
Position 9 – “Check digit”
This is the VIN Check Digit where you can use math to figure out if it is a correct VIN. It does not tell you anything about the vehicle itself.
Vehicle Identifier Section (VIS)
Letters and numbers 10 through 17 is the Vehicle Descriptor Section. This gives you information such as when it was produced, what options it comes with and so on.
Position 10 – “Model year”
The 10th letter or number of the VIN tells you the model year of the vehicle. Note that this may be different from when it was manufactured, as many automobile manufacturers start to produce next years model this year. Find the model year by matching the 10th digit of your VIN to the table below:
|A = 1980|
B = 1981
C = 1982
D = 1983
E = 1984
F = 1985
G = 1986
H = 1987
J = 1988
K = 1989
L = 1990
M = 1991
N = 1992
P = 1993
R = 1994
S = 1995
T = 1996
V = 1997
W = 1998
X = 1999
Y = 2000
|1 = 2001|
2 = 2002
3 = 2003
4 = 2004
5 = 2005
6 = 2006
7 = 2007
8 = 2008
9 = 2009
|A = 2010|
B = 2011
C = 2012
D = 2013
E = 2014
F = 2015
G = 2016
H = 2017
J = 2018
K = 2019
L = 2020
M = 2021
N = 2022
P = 2023
R = 2024
S = 2025
T = 2026
V = 2027
W = 2028
X = 2029
Y = 2030
|1 = 2031|
2 = 2032
3 = 2033
4 = 2034
5 = 2035
6 = 2036
7 = 2037
8 = 2038
9 = 2039
[DeLoreans are either 1981, 1982, or 1983]
As you can see, each letter or number has been assigned to two different years. To find out which one applies to your VIN, you must look at the 7th letter or number in your VIN. If the 7th VIN position is a letter, then your vehicle is made in 2010 through 2039. If the 7th VIN is a number, then your vehicle is made prior to 2010.
Positions 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 – “Assembly plant” and “Serial number”
This is where the auto manufacturers enter unique information about the particular vehicle the VIN belongs to. The name of the assembly plant, extra options added to the vehicle, Production Sequence Number and things of that nature. This is different from company to company, so to find more details about this go to the Automobile Manufacturer website for your vehicle.
PS. A lot of vehicle information is also available on the Window Sticker. If you have the VIN number, you can find the window sticker by using Research Maniacs VIN lookup.
[DeLorean designated the manufacturing plant as “D” for Dunmurry]Research Maniacs