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When international standardisation took place, this became WVWzzz11z AM000001.
WVW means Volkswagen private cars, the z’s are fill in characters and the letter ‘M’ in the 11 position denotes the country of manufacture, in this case Mexico.
The numbering system changed in 1965 with the introduction of a three digit prefix consisting of 11 to denote the Beetle (the Karmann Ghia was designated Type 14 and the Cabrio Type 15), followed by a digit to denote the model year, eg and so on.
First things first – you need to know where to look to find the necessary numbers.
The ‘birth certificate’ for your Bug will be underneath the bonnet next to where it locks to the front apron – it will tell you the origin of the car as well as the chassis number.
So, for example, if you’re keen on returning your Bug to original spec – it will tell you what accessories to keep, which to ditch and what parts are missing… If you’ve done any detective work yourself regarding Beetle M numbers, we’d love to hear from you…
Eradicating Rust and Other VW Blemishes Nothing ruins a beautiful Volkswagen like rust or other body issues.
‘Type’ numbers The chassis number only contains the first two ‘Type’ digits, but in fact the full Type numbers were made up of three digits up until 1968, then six thereafter.