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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey folks!

Sorry if this has been asked and answered but I haven't seen it after lurking for a week or two, so here goes...

Is there any way to decode the VIN to find out color and options on the '02 models? A couple of dealers near me (Spring, TX) have websites that list their stock by VIN, but not much else. Sometimes they list the color, but not always. I'm looking for a MB EX-RES, and it would be nice to be able to check stock and tell by the VIN if it's worth checking out further.

Can't wait to ditch my '97 Suburban (Hecho en Mexico). It's been a PITA pretty much from day one, but not quite enough to qualify for the Lemon Law (which makes it even more of a PITA since I'm stuck with it). Had the A/C serviced the same week of delivery (low on Freon), had the tranny rebuilt at 9,000 miles, steering fixed twice (speed-sensitive steering would cause it to jerk suddenly in a slow right turn), alternator replaced twice, power windows had to be fixed, and just recently the fuel pump went out. This thing only has 31,000 miles on it now, which is very low for a vehicle that's almost 5 years old, but it acts like it needs to be put out to pasture.

Told the wife that she might as well get used to the idea of getting a new vehicle; we had hoped to pay this thing off and enjoy some time w/o car payments, but there's NO WAY I'm going to own this thing past warranty expiration. The Ody is top of my list for a replacement, and so here I am. BTW, kudos to the folks that put this site together and who've posted and made it what it is -- VERY informative and helpful!

· Registered
18 Posts
Starting from Left to right
The first 3 characters on the VIN represents the manufacturer,make and type of vehicle
2HK is Canada, 5FN is Alabama
The next 3 characters represent body, line & type and engine, should be RL1
The 7th character represents body type and transmission type, this should be 8
The 8th character represents vehicle grade
0=EXL with RES
The 9th character is a check digit(not relevant)
The 10th character represents the Year of vehicle, 2=2002 model
The 11th digit represents the factory code
B=lincoln Alabama
H=Ontario Canada
The last 6 digits represent the serial number
I don't think the color code is in the VIN, the Paint code for MB is YR-520M

Hope that helps


If you're not able to determine the color from the VIN, you can run it through the free part of That will tell you model and color.

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