How to identify the true build year and model of a Porsche from the chassis number.
The date of registration is not an accurate way of determining the model year of your Porsche, it’s that the Porsche could have been unused in a showroom and registered later. Therefore it’s worth knowing the real model year/ build year.
To find out accurately take a look at the 10th digit of the chassis number.
For example; WPOZZZ91ZGS10000.
The first, second and third characters – ‘WPO’ is the international Porsche code.
The fourth , fifth and sixth characters ‘ZZZ’ are fill in characters on European and rest of world cars.
For North American cars the fourth digit represented the body style; A/B or C- Coupe/Targa or Cabrio.
The 7th,8th and 12 digit represent the model code. Therefore a 911 will be WPOZZZ91Z?S1?????; a Turbo (930) will be WPOZZZ93ZS?0????; similarly a 964, 993, 996 and 986 (Boxster).
The 10th digit in the chassis number is the model year or series;
L=1990; M=1991; N=1992; P=1993;
R=1994; S=1995; T=1996; V=1997;
W=1998;X=1999;Y=2000; then it changes to a more simple format 1=2001;2=2002 etc.
The eleventh digit = place of manufacture S= Stuttgart.
The thirteenth digit onwards the production number.
NOTE; North American Porsche appear to be a little ‘behind’ Europe. For example, the first 964 Carrera 4 was seen in Germany in late 1988, but only in late 1989 for the UK and 1989 for the U.S.
Find a detailed Buyers and owners guides specifically for the Porsche models including the 911 Carrera 3.2, 911Turbo 3.3 , 964 Carrera 2 Carrera4, 964 Turbo II, 993, 996 and Boxster.