Where is the MGB VIN plate located?
The VIN for the early MGB, approximately 1962-69, may be found stamped on a plate that is secured to the inner right hand fender (looking from the rear of the car), located just in front of the radiator. The VIN for the later MGB, approximately 1970 to 1980, may be found stamped on a plate secured to the left hand door post, and on a plate secured to the top of the dashboard.
The VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) is also known as the Car Number or the Car ID.
Alternate MGB VIN stamp locations
Additional VIN location information from member Lloyd Faust:
In addition to the stamped plates shown above, there are other places where the VIN is stamped: Starting with about car # 100, the VIN was stamped into the right front frame rail on cars for the North American market. This continued through the end of production. Then with the rubber bumper cars (1974½-1980), the number was stamped in the right side floor pan. Starting in late 1978, the number was also stamped on the right rear frame rail in the trunk.
These numbers were stamped on the trim deck at Abingdon (after the car was painted of course). There are also many other numbers on the car, on plates that are riveted, welded or screwed on; these are not the VIN number. There are also numerous assembly numbers (particularly on late cars), these also have nothing to do with the VIN.
What does my VIN mean?: ex: GHN 5UC 54321
This information is not applicable to VINs for Mark IV (1980) MGBs, which used a more modern VIN numbering scheme.
If you would like to have your car's VIN decoded automatically, you can add any kind of car or truck to the MG Experience Registry and the "Magic VIN Decoder" box will be shown on your vehicle's page free of charge. Click here to see an example
Please note that the "model year" for a vehicle is usually different than the "production year" when it came off the assembly line, and in some places the date of first registration is used as the model year on the vehicle title, which can be different yet again.
|2. Engine Type||H
|BMC B-Series engine, 1.8L (MGB)
BMC A-Series engine (Midget)
|3. Body Type||N
|2 seated Roadster
GT or Coupe
|USA (left-hand drive)
|6. Model Year||none
|7+ Car Number||54321|
What does the number on my engine mean?: ex: 18V/581F/L101
Bear with me, this is somewhat complex, and possibly incomplete.
The information has been gathered from various sources to the best of our ability.
|Group 2 (18G)||U
|Center gear change
Center gear change w/ overdrive
|Group 2 (18V)||581F
Carburetor crankcase ventilation,
evaporative loss control and twin
Carburetor crankcase ventilation,
air temperature control and
evaporative loss control.
|Group 2 (18V)
|Lucas 16ACR or 17ACR alternator
with negative earth
Anti-run on valve
Pre-engaged starter motor
(when not normally fitted)
Exhaust emission control
Center gear change
1975 Federal regulation
1975 California regulation
Left hand drive
How can I find my car's production date and original options?
Contrary to logic and common sense, VIN numbers are not necessarily easy to translate directly into a precise "build date" when your MGB rolled off the assembly lines, as they are not necesarily sequential. At any rate, those records are not available to me.
Specific MGB model changes by VIN number can be found in the book Original MGB by Clausager - he was the offical Archivist of the factory production data at the British Motor Industry Heritage Center. That book is still in print and the information is copyrighted, so unfortunately it cannot be reproduced for free on this website.
You can purchase a Heritage Certificate (aka BMIHT certificate) for your car, showing production data and original color and options, compiled from original factory records. These can be purchased at the Heritage Motor Centre UK website.