Q:

Is it possible to find out the color of a vehicle using its VIN?

A:

Quick Answer

No, it's not possible to use the vehicle identification number (VIN) to determine a vehicle's color. Every car has a VIN, which is a 17 character combination of letters and numbers that reveals information about the vehicle.

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Full Answer

The first three characters confirm where the vehicle was built and the manufacturer's identity. The fourth through eighth characters identify the brakes, body style, restraint system and power train. For verification purposes, the ninth character is a check digit developed by the U.S. Department of Transportation that ensures the information provided by the first eight characters is legit. The 10th and 11th characters tell where the car was built and what year it was built in, and the final six characters are a serial number provided by the manufacturer, which typically reveal the model and trim.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What are some reasons to use a VIN lookup at the DMV?

    A:

    Looking up a VIN number at a DMV gives valuable information, such as sale and ownership history, accident history, liens, damage from floods, improper odometer settings and whether the vehicle classifies as a lemon. Each VIN number uniquely identifies a car or truck and gives the owner valuable insight into the vehicle's history. They essentially serve as background checks for cars, alerting owners to fraud or damage associated with their cars.

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  • Q:

    How do you check a VIN to see if a motorcycle has been stolen?

    A:

    The National Insurance Crime Bureau allows the public to check the vehicle identification number of motorcycles and other vehicles online to determine if the vehicle is stolen. Once the requested information is entered into the site, a search is made against the number, and the result appears. The only limitation is that a user is restricted to five searches with any 24-hour period from the same IP address.

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  • Q:

    Does the VIN system prevent vehicle theft?

    A:

    Prominently displaying a Vehicle Identification Number (VIN0, for example by etching it into the windows of a vehicle, may help deter theft by making the vehicle appear less appealing to thieves. Reported thefts are included as part of the vehicle history report that is searchable by VIN.

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  • Q:

    How can a person run a licence plate number for free?

    A:

    It is not possible to legally run a license plate number in order to find information relating to the owner of a vehicle. This applies whether the license plate look up service is free or paid for. It is, however, possible to look up a license plate to see if it is available for purchase.

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