Links on Super Easy may earn us a commission. Learn more.

BMW VIN Decoder | Find Car History and Specs by VIN

BMW VIN decoder

Enter the VIN and get vehicle history and specifications

Where to find the VIN?

Plan to buy a used BMW? You need to check its vehicle history beforehand and see if everything is fine, or you might end up with a lemon. Luckily, a VIN can tell you more than you might think, like specifications and salvage & accident records. In this post, we’ll show you how to decode a BMW VIN and get its vehicle history and specs.

What does BMW VIN mean?

Just like any VIN, each digit has a specific meaning. This is a chart to help you identify what does each digit mean in a BMW VIN number. With some patience and basic knowledge, you can firstly explore the VIN by yourself.

But if that’s not enough for you, you can try some professional VIN decoder.

Method 1: Find detailed vehicle history with a VIN decoder

If you want to skip the hassle of searching through online pages, the easiest and most efficient solution is to use a professional VIN decoder. With access to enormous public record databases, it’s capable of giving you more than basic specifications and recall records-like accident & salvage, theft and title records. Here are the top 3 VIN decoders that we trust.

BeenVerified is a powerful VIN lookup tool that dives deep into a car’s past. It’s your best choice if you want to get a comprehensive look into the vehicle history. Just enter a VIN, then the search engine will dig into its database and generate a report containing accident & salvage records, possible previous owners, recalls, warranty details, and more.

  1. Go to the BeenVerified vehicle search page.
  2. Enter the VIN and click SEARCH.
  3. Wait for BeenVerified to search in its database. Once done, it’ll generate a report including everything it can find related to the VIN.
With a VIN search subscription, you can access BeenVerified’s other services like reverse phone lookup and name search.

2. Bumper

Bumper is an excellent alternative to BeenVerified. It is a professional vehicle search tool that gathers vehicle records from government agencies, insurance providers, car industry sources and more. With a VIN number, you’ll know about a car’s ownership, maintenance, warranty, repair records, accidents, theft records, and more.

  1. Visit the Bumper search page.
  2. Enter the VIN and click SEARCH.
  3. Wait for Bumper to scour its database and find you all the available records associated with the VIN number. Also, it’s now offering a 7-day trial for only $1, allowing you to run unlimited vehicle searches.

3. EpicVIN

EpicVIN is a reliable vehicle data provider powered by NMVTS (National Motor Vehicle Title Information System). With over 350 million data records from reliable resources, it’s capable of offering you genuine information like salvage & accident records, theft records, hidden damages, and more. Here’s how to use it:

  1. Go to the EpicVIN search page.
  2. Enter the VIN number and click Check VIN.
  3. Once it finds a match, it’ll generate a report showing the complete history of the vehicle. You may get information like ownership history, actual odometer readings, warranty details, and more.

Method 2: Search the VIN in the NICB database

If you’re only curious about the theft or salvage records of the vehicle, you can make use of NICB’s VIN check tool. It is a free VIN lookup platform provided by the National Insurance Crime Bureau, and is accessible to everyone. Enter a VIN, and it’ll give you a vehicle’s theft and salvage records quickly. Here’s how to use it:

  1. Visit the NICB VINCheck page.
  2. Enter the VIN number, check the terms of use and click SEARCH VIN.
  3. Wait for it’s done. You’ll know if the vehicle was ever reported stolen or damaged to a total loss.

Please note that the info might not be up to date, because it uses data supplied by car insurance companies, which is not always well-maintained. And it only allows 5 free searches within a 24-hour period. To get immediate and complete information, you can try a VIN decoder.

Method 3: Get technical data from the BMW website

To decode the VIN of a specific car brand, the first place to go is its official website. Because they’ll put vehicle information on the Owners page for customers to check. What’s better, it’s normally free of charge.

  1. Simply navigate to the BMW website, enter the VIN, and click ENTER.
  2. Download the manuals for the vehicle. Normally the technical data will be found in the Owner’s Manual.

Apart from that, BMW also allows you to check the vehicle’s recall records. You can browse the website and explore what BMW has to offer. If you don’t have the time to scour through different files, or you need more than basic specifications and recall records, move on to the next method.

Where to find the VIN?

VIN is a 17-digit unique identifier assigned to a vehicle by manufacturers, and it remains with the vehicle from its beginning to its end. If you have access to the car, you can find it from the following places:

  • The front of the engine block
  • The rear wheel well
  • Driver-side doorpost
  • Underneath the spare tire
  • The front of the car frame

If the VIN number is not available for the moment, no worries. Because you can still get the information you need by searching the license plate number (if you have one).

License Plate Lookup

Research a BMW by License Plate


These are the 3 methods to decode a BMW VIN. We hope you find this post helpful.

BMW VIN chart is from Pinterest

By Arlee Hu

As a content creator for Super Easy, Arlee is passionate about uncovering the best products, services and bargains for our readers, along with providing helpful tips and a unique perspective. Prior to joining Super Easy, she worked as an English-Chinese interpreter for a government foreign affairs office, then for an online course platform.In her spare time, Arlee enjoys traveling, technology, movies, music, writing and — naturally — shopping. All of which make her the perfect fit for what we do here at Super Easy!

Failed to load the Search bar. Please refresh the page and try again.
Click here to reload