1955: A new car is born...THUNDERBIRD. This car, and the Thunderbirds that followed, are classics and set the styling trend for an entire generation of cars.

1955-1959 VINs

1960-1980 VINs

1981-2005 VINs

Location of the Data Plate the Vehicle Identification Number:

1960 through 1963 Thunderbirds: On the left front body pillar below the driver's door hinge opening

1964 through 1973 Thunderbirds: On the driver's door lock face.

1974 through 1980 Thunderbirds: On the driver's door lock pillar (body of the car).

1968 through 1980 Thunderbirds also have the VIN on a metal tab that is attached to the top of the instrument panel. This tab is visible through the windshield.

Click here for location of VINs which are stamped on the car

Position #1 is the Year Identification

0 = 1960, 1 = 1961, 2 = 1962, etc. continuing to 9 = 1969

0 = 1970, 1 = 1971, 2 = 1972, etc. continuing to 9 = 1979

0 = 1980


Position #2 is the Assembly Plant Identification

 G = Chicago, Illinois   H = Lorain, Ohio  J = Los Angeles, California

Y = Wixom, Michigan


Positions #3 and #4 are the Body Series Code Identification

71 = Thunderbird 2-door hardtop (1960 and 1961)

73 = Thunderbird 2-door convertible (1960 and 1961)

 

81 = Thunderbird 2-door Town Hardtop (1966, no rear quarter window, steel roof)

81 = Thunderbird 2-door hardtop (1967)

 

82 = Thunderbird 2-door Landau (1967)

 

83 = Thunderbird 2-door hardtop (1962 through 1966, with rear quarter window)

83 = Thunderbird 2-door hardtop (1968 through 1971, with rear quarter window)

 

84 = Thunderbird 4-door Landau (1967)

84 = Thunderbird 2-door Landau (1968 through 1971)

Note: 1969 and 1971 Thunderbird 2-door Landaus did not have a rear quarter window. They are not considered "Town Landaus" as in 1966.

 

85 = Thunderbird Convertible (1962 [see note below] through 1966)

 

87 = Thunderbird 2-door Landau (1962 through 1965)

87 = Thunderbird 2-door Town Landau (1966, no rear quarter window)

87 = Thunderbird 4-door Landau (1968 through 1971)

87 = Thunderbird 2-door hardtop (1972 through 1979)

87 = Thunderbird 2-door sedan (1980)

 

89 = Thunderbird 2-door Sports Roadster (1962-late [see note below] and 1963)

NOTE: The 1962 Thunderbird Sports Roadster body series code was "85" for the first 558 units produced, the last being 2Y85Z114640. The body series code was changed to "89" for the balance of 1962 production.


Position #5 is the Engine Identification

A = 460 cubic inch, 4V, V-8 (1972-1976)

B = 200 cubic inch, 1V, 6-cylinder (1980)

D = 255 cubic inch, 2V, V-8 (1980)

F = 302 cubic inch, 2V, V-8 (1977-1980)

H = 351 cubic inch, 2V, V-8 (1977 through 1979)

J = 430 cubic inch, 4V, V-8 (1960)

M = 390 cubic inch, 3-2V, V-8 (1962 and 1963)

N = 429 cubic inch, 4V, V-8 (1968-1973)

Q = 351 cubic inch, 2V, V-8 (Windsor, 1977)

Q = 428 cubic inch, 4V, V-8 (1966 and 1967)

S = 400 cubic inch, 2V, V-8 (1972, 1977-1978)

Y = 352 cubic inch, 4V, V-8 (1960)

Z = 390 cubic inch, 4V, V-8 (1961-1968)

9 = 390 cubic inch V-8 low compression

Positions #6 through #11 are the Consecutive Unit Number

Consecutive Unit Numbers begin at 100001 at each Ford Motor Company assembly plant. This number represents the scheduled sequence order. When a car was ordered, it was immediately assigned a VIN with a Consecutive Unit Number. It was then assigned a scheduled production date based on availability of trim, parts, other components, and taking into account production workloads at the assembly plant.

A scheduled production date was very often out of sequence with the Consecutive Unit Number. And more often than not, the actual production date (the day the car rolled off the line) was earlier or later than what was originally planned. Therefore, a Thunderbird with a Consecutive Unit Number of 105678 may have actually been produced and ready for shipping before a Thunderbird with a Consecutive Unit Number of 105432. The Consecutive Unit Number should be considered to be a unique identification that shows when the order was received and when it was planned for production.


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The Thunderbird Registry is in partnership with The Lincoln Vault.