Call Center Open | 866.350.4540
You are just $149.99 from Free Shipping within the contiguous U.S.
Menu

VIN Decoding: C1-C3

VIN Decoding: C1-C3

VIN Decoding: C1-C3

We recently gave you an overview of just exactly what a Corvette's serial number or VIN can tell you. The Vehicle Identification Number is home to a variety of details, from production number to the less-obvious assembly plant, body style and in some cases, restraint system. In this newsletter, Mid America Motorworks decodes the details in the early Corvette VINs, covering C1, C2 and C3 generations.

1953-1959 VIN and VIN position diagram

1953 – 1959: VINs contained this same information, with digits changing to signify the year or changes made at Chevrolet.

1953 VIN Includes:

1st Digit: Identifies Series and Model (E for Corvette)
2nd & 3rd Digits: Identify Model Year (53)
4th Digit: Identifies Assembly Plant (F for Flint, Michigan)
Last 6 Digits: Identify production number, starting with 001001.

1954: The 4th Digit changed to S for St. Louis.
1957: The production number changed to begin at 100001
1958: The Series and Model digit changed from E to J

white C1
1960-1964 VIN and VIN position diagram

1960 – 1964: VINs changed layout of information.

1960 VIN Includes:

1st Digit: Identifies Model Year (0 for 1960)
2nd & 3rd Digits: Identify Series (08 for Corvette)
4th & 5th Digits: Identify Body Style (67 for 2-Door Convertible)
6th Digit: Identifies Assembly Plant (S for St. Louis, Missouri)
Last 6 Digits: Identify production number, starting with 100001

red C1
1965-1971 VIN and VIN position diagram

1965 – 1971: VINs once again changed the order of information.

1965 VIN Includes:

1st Digit: Identifies Chevrolet Division (1 for Chevrolet)
2nd & 3rd Digits: Identify Series (94 for Corvette)
4th & 5th Digits: Identify Body Style (37 for 2-door Coupe, 67 for 2-door Convertible)
6th Digit: Identifies Model Year (5 for 1965)
7th Digit: Identifies Assembly Plant (S for St. Louis, Missouri)
Last 6 Digits: Identify production number, starting with 100001

1968: Production number began with 4 (400001)
1969: Production number began with 7 (700001)
1970: Production number began with 4 (400001)
1971: Production number began with 1 (100001)

green C2 with soft top
1972-1977 VIN and VIN position diagram

1972 VIN Includes:

1st Digit: Identifies Chevrolet Division (1 for Chevrolet)
2nd Digit: Identify Series (Z for Corvette)
3rd & 4th Digits: Identify Body Style (37 for 2-door Coupe, 67 for 2-door Convertible)
5th Digit: Identifies Engine Code (K for 350ci, 225hp, 185hp; L for 350ci, 255hp; W for 454ci, 270hp)
6th Digit: Identifies Model Year (2 for 1972)
7th Digit: Identifies Assembly Plant (S for St. Louis, Missouri)
Last 6 Digits: Identify production number, starting with 500001

black C3

1973: Production number began with 4 (400001)
1973-1977:VINs contained the same information and same number sequencing.
1974: 5th Digit Options were J for 350ci, 195hp; T for 350ci, 250hp; Z for 454ci, 270hp
1975: 5th Digit Options were J for 350ci, 165hp; T for 350ci, 205hp
1976-1977: 5th Digit Options were L for 350ci, 180hp; X for 350ci, 210hp

Note that for 1976-1982 Corvettes, the 3rd digit is a 3 or 8 because there were no convertibles made.

1978-1980 VIN and VIN position diagram

1978 VINs included a Corvette first: special identification for Special Edition Models. It was also the first time Chevrolet used a number instead of a letter to identify the engine in the VIN.

1st Digit: Identifies Chevrolet Division (1 for Chevrolet)
2nd Digit: Identify Series (Z for Corvette)
3rd & 4th Digits: Identify Body Style (87 for 2-door Coupe)
5th Digit: Identifies Engine Code (L for 350ci, 175hp; 4 for 350ci, 220hp)
6th Digit: Identifies Model Year (8 for 1978)
7th Digit: Identifies Assembly Plant (S for St. Louis, Missouri)
Last 6 Digits: Identify production number, starting with 400001. Pace Car production numbers began with 9 (900001)

gray C3

1979: 5th Digit Options were 8 for 350ci, 195hp; 4 for 350ci, 225hp
1980: 5th Digit Options were 8 for 350ci, 190hp; H for 305ci, 180hp; 6 for 350ci, 230hp 6th Digit changes to a letter to indicate model year

1981-1982 VIN and VIN position diagram

1981 VIN Includes:

1st Digit: Identifies Country of Origin (1 for United States)
2nd Digit: Identifies Manufacturer (G for General Motors)
3rd Digit: Identifies Division (1 for Chevrolet)
4th Digit: Identifies Restraint System (A for Non-Passive/Manual Belts, B for Automatic Belts, C for Air Bags)
5th Digit: Identifies Carline/Series (Y for Corvette)
6th & 7th Digits: Identify Body Type (87 for Coupe)
8th Digit: Identifies Engine Code (6 for 350ci, 190hp)
9th Digit: Security Code added to VIN; varies
10th Digit: Identifies Model Year (B for 1981)
11th Digit: Identifies Assembly Plant (S for St. Louis, 5 for Bowling Green)
Last 6 Digits: Identify production number (400001 for St. Louis, 100001 for Bowling Green)

copper C3

1982: 6th & 7th Digits are 07 for Special Edition Anniversary Corvettes.

VIN tag 100017 was lost during 1982 production and that vehicle was never built.