How to Decode the Vehicle Identification Number on a Mazda

Every vehicle has a unique VIN or vehicle identification number comprised of seventeen digits. The International Organization for Standardization began this method of identifying vehicles in 1980. This ensures that the vehicle being purchased is accurately represented including all features. The VIN is located on a small metal plate on the driver’s side of the dashboard.

Digits 1-3

We will concentrate on VIN numbers generally found on a Mazda. The first three numbers represent the make of the vehicle, model, and manufacturer. The first number is the country of the vehicle was manufactured. The second digit represents the manufacturer and the third is the type of vehicle. The digits for USA are (1, 4, or 5) and J is used for Japan.  You may find a code such as 1YV on a Mazda. This would indicate the vehicle was made in the USA, the digit (Y) is the manufacturing location, and the digit (V) is the division or type of vehicle.

Digits 4-8

These numbers will inform you the features for your individual vehicle. This will include body type, chassis, engine size, safety features, and series. If you have a Mazda 3, BK will be digits 1 and 2 in this section.

decodeDigits 9-17

The ninth digit is used for a safety check. All the numbers are combined employing a mathematical formula to ensure this VIN matches your vehicle. Digit number 10 is the year of your vehicle. In the year 2000, numbers were used to represent years. The years previously used letters. The next number is the assembly plant followed by the final 6 digits which are the serial number.

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