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Founded in 1914, Nissan has been living up to its slogan, “built for the human race” since its inception, although known and branded as Datsun for decades. The first Nissan VIN decoding in America would begin in 1958, with the 1000 Sedan, a precursor to today’s popular Nissan Altima. Only 146 vehicles were sold from the introduction until 1961, giving collectors an opportunity to decode Nissan VINs to verify authenticity and originality.
The location and appearance of the VIN will vary depending on the year and model. Before the adoption of the standardized 17-digit VIN we know today, manufacturers used different numbers. For example, for the original 1000 Sedan, these was no VIN per say, but the chassis number will be located on the hood ledge (engraved inside the engine bay), and the engine number is on the wall of the cylinder. The original engine number for all Datsun 1000 models will all begin with A10, since they were all equipped with an A10 engine. The chassis number could begin with B10, B20, VB10, KB10, LB10, LB20, or LVB10, which indicates the doors, model, and type.
Today, the Nissan VIN decoder process begins with finding the standardized 17-digit number on the vehicle. Start with the windshield, looking into the car from the outside. In the lower right hand corner, where the windshield meets the driver’s side dashboard, you will see a long plate engraved with 17 digits. You can also locate the number for Nissan VIN decoding in the following locations, depending upon the year and model:
Each of the 17 digits in Nissan VIN decoding has a specific value. The first three digits, which is the World Manufacturer Identifier, reveals the manufacturing country, manufacturer, and car type. For example, JN1 would be a Japan produced Nissan passenger vehicle.
The fourth digit to decode a Nissan VIN is the extended engine type, while the fifth digit is the extended model line (such as B for Sentra, C for Versa, or J for Maxima). The sixth digit is for the model change, while the seventh is for the body type (such as 4 for 2-door coupe and 5 for 4-door wagon) and the eight digit represents the restraint and drive trains.
The ninth digit, which is also called the “check” digit, can be from 0 – 9 or the letter X and is purposefully kept secret. Only the manufacturer and law enforcement can access this number to verify the authenticity of a VIN.
The tenth digit is for the model year, with L beginning in 1990 and proceeding consecutively through the alphabet before switching to numbers and then coming back to letters, reaching H for 2017. The eleventh digit is the manufacturing plant code, such as C for Tennessee, M for Rochigi, or T for Oppama.
Finally, the last six numbers are the car’s unique serial number based upon the manufacturing order, or the order in which the car came off the assembly line that year for the model.
Thanks to a free VIN check with VINCheckPro.com, Nissan VIN decoding is instantaneous and easy. Simply enter in the 17-digit VIN, and VINCheckPro will analyze the rest. Even more invaluable is the history report VINCheckPro will generate after scanning through its database of 40 million government and private insurance records. This free VIN number lookup report will show if there were accidents, title issues, thefts, and other possible problems in the pre-owned Nissan you are considering.