How to Locate VIN Numbers on a 1950 Model Ford Car

by Chyrene Pendleton
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1950's british sport saloon image by TA Craft Photography from

Before 1980, car manufacturing plants were not required to provide vehicle identification numbers for the cars. In fact, before the 1950s, cars only had serial numbers showing the car make, model and year. Car manufacturers stamped these serial numbers without extra zeros or commas. Some cars, such as classics, may or may not have included a price class in their codes. Each manufacturing plant had its own way of creating codes for its cars. As of 1950, Ford cars began to appear with more uniform serial numbers, which revealed specific information, such as the assembly plant, engine identification, model year and the Consecutive Unit Number, showing when the plant received the order.

Step 1

Locate the dash cowl panel under the hood of the 1950 model Ford car to see the VIN stamped on its face in large digits. The cowl panel looks like an air vent and directs air into the cab.

Step 2

Find the VIN for the 1950 Ford Mercury stamped on the top of the frame's right side, located by the front body bracket.

Step 3

Look at the right frame side rail of the 1950 Ford car, behind the suspension upper arm. There you can find the VIN stamp without the production codes.

Step 4

Interpret the 10-digit VIN for a 1950 car, "B 0 AT 103456," for example, as "B" in position one for the engine identification of a 239-cubic-inch, 2V, V8; "0" in position two as the year 1950; "AT" in positions three and four as the assembly plant identification code for Atlanta, Georgia. Positions five through 10 of "103456" represent the consecutive unit numbers of the VIN, which Ford Motor Company assigned each car when retailers ordered one. In 1950, each first Ford car at each assembly plant started out with a consecutive unit number of 100001.

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