How to Check and Decode a Honda VIN

You can find your Honda’s VIN on the driver’s side dashboard or the driver’s side doorjamb. The 17 digits follow a standardized set of codes.
Written by Amber Reed
Reviewed by Kathleen Flear
Honda VINs are usually on a plate attached to the dashboard on the driver’s side, on the driver’s side doorjamb, and stamped onto the engine compartment. If you know how to read a VIN, you can use it to get information on your car’s manufacturer, body type, model year, assembly plant, and more.
If you’ve ever sold a car, renewed your driver’s license, or updated your registration, a DMV employee may have asked you for your vehicle identification number. You probably gave them a seemingly random collection of numbers and letters—but what do they mean, exactly? 
As it turns out, you can get a lot of information about a vehicle from its VIN. 
Here to teach you about decoding Honda VINs is
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How to check your Honda’s VIN

A VIN, or vehicle identification number, is a collection of 17 characters that can be decoded to reveal information about your car.
Honda drivers can find their VIN:
  • On their insurance card
  • On their registration documents
  • Stamped onto a plate attached to the driver’s side dashboard
  • On the driver’s side doorjamb
  • Stamped onto the engine compartment
You should be able to find your VIN in one of these locations, but if you’re having trouble, you can ask your mechanic to read it for you using an onboard diagnostics II scanner. Most Honda OBD-II ports are located under the steering wheel.

How to decode a Honda VIN

For a bunch of random numbers and letters, VINs contain important information about a car! Decoding a VIN can reveal details including specifications, the car’s model year, and even what factory it was assembled at.
When VINs were first introduced in the 1950s, they were often difficult to read. Different manufacturers used different VIN formats—so interpreting them could be a challenge if you weren’t already familiar with the manufacturer’s codes. But since the
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
standardized VINs in 1981, they all look the same, making them much easier to decode. 
All VINs are 17 characters long and can be read the same way, no matter the vehicle. They include numbers (0-9) and letters (every letter of the alphabet except for I, O, and Q). I, O, and Q are easily mistaken for 1, 0, and 9—so it’s simpler to leave them out.

Positions 1-3: world manufacturer identifier

The first three characters in your VIN are its world manufacturer identifier or WMI. The WMI includes the codes for your car’s country of origin, manufacturer, and type.

Positions 4-8: vehicle-specific information

The next part of the VIN refers to specific details about your car, including its make or model, transmission or engine type, restraint system, and more. Since there are many different Honda models and trim levels, this part of the VIN identifies exactly which kind of Honda you drive.

Position 9: VIN check digit

The check digit exists to help law enforcement detect false VINs. It’s based on a mathematical equation that uses the other digits in your VIN and makes it difficult for counterfeiters to create phony VINs.

Position 10: model year

VINs often reuse model year codes, so you may need to refer to an online chart if you aren’t sure when your vehicle was made. Here’s what the codes have looked like over the last two decades:
1981 OR 2011
1982 OR 2012
1983 OR  2013
1984 OR 2014
1985 OR 2015
1986 OR 2016
1987 OR 2017
1988 OR 2018
1989 OR 2019
1990 OR 2020
1991 OR 2021
1992 OR 2022
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Position 11: assembly plant

Honda manufactures its vehicles in 28 countries, including the United States, Canada, and Japan—and there’s a unique VIN code for each Honda factory. If your car was assembled in the Marysville, Ohio plant, for example, it would have the code A.

Positions 12-17: vehicle serial number

The last part of your VIN is a serial number unique to your specific vehicle. This number was most likely assigned to your car as it left the assembly line and is sometimes referred to as a sequence number.

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