Bremer Wappen

W123 Bremen

Thursday, 21.10.2021

W123 Date - The VIN

Every W123 has one and none comes out without it, the

Vehicle identification number (VIN).

In 1981, the VIN, which was unambiguous and standardized worldwide, replaced the previously used chassis numbers. It has 17 digits and contains, depending on the manufacturer, information about the vehicle. In Germany, however, the designation chassis number is still common, although the VIN is meant.
The VIN according to ISO 3779 is composed as follows:

1.   1st to  3rd place - World manufacturer identifier (WMI)
2.   4th to  9th place - "Description" of the vehicle (VDS)
3. 10th to 17th place - Consecutive number (VIS)

This is only the basic classification. In Europe, some places are of particular importance. Thus, the 10th digit is used as the model year code (ISO 3779-1983) and the 11th digit indicates the manufacturer.
However, there are other rules in other parts of the world. In the USA it is compulsory to specify a check digit in the 9th place and manufacturers with a production of less than 500 units per year contain the unique manufacturer identification in the places 12 to 14.

In the picture below we decode the chassis number of a W123.

fin
 
fin1 World manufacturer identifier (WMI):
WDB Mercedes-Benz (Daimler AG) Germany
fin2 Code for the series:
123 December 1975 (Pre-production from July 1975) to January 1986
fin3 Type designation
Sedan
  • 020 - 200 (M115)
  • 220 - 200 (M102)
  • 023 - 230
  • 223 - 230 E
  • 026 - 250
  • 030 - 280
  • 033 - 280 E
  • 120 - 200 D
  • 126 - 220 D
  • 123 - 240 D
  • 130 - 300 D
  • 133 - 300 D Turbo
Type designation
Sation Wagon
  • 280 - 200 T
  • 083 - 230 T
  • 283 - 230 TE
  • 086 - 250 T
  • 093 - 280 TE
  • 183 - 240 TD
  • 190 - 300 TD
  • 193 - 300 TD Turbo
Type designation
Coupé
  • 043 - 230 C
  • 243 - 230 CE
  • 050 - 280 C
  • 053 - 280 CE
  • 150 - 300 CD
  • 153 - 300 CD Turbo
  Type designation
Long Version
  • 028 - 250 Lang
  • 125 - 240 D Lang
  • 132 - 300 D Lang

Type designation
   Chassis

  • 000 - 230 Chassis
  • 200 - 230 E Chassis
  • 102 - 240 D Chassis
  • 103 - 240 D Chassis long version
  • 003 - 250 Chassis long version
  • 007 - 280 E Chassis long version
  • 105 - 300 D Chassis long version
fin4 Steering
  • 1 - left-hand drive
  • 2 - right-hand drive
  • 5 - left-hand drive (CKD vehicles / Kits)
  • 6 - right-hand drive (CKD vehicles / Kits)
fin5 Transmission (until mid-1982)
  • 0 - Manual gearshift
  • 2 - Automatic gear shifting
Production plant (from the middle of 1982)
  • A, B, C, D, E - Sindelfingen
  • F, G, H - Bremen
  • I, K, L, M, N - Wörth
  • J - Rastatt
  • K - Graz
  • T - Bremen
  • U - Mannheim
  • V, W - Gaggenau
fin6 Consecutive serial number of the model