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Stalwart23

New Flyer VIN Decoder

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For those who don't know how to identify a 17-digit vin number for New Flyer buses, I will tell you all.

The first digit is for the country, which is 2 for Canada, and 5 for the USA. 1 was also used for the USA, but only in 1997.

Digits two and three identify the manufacturer, which is New Flyer.

The fourth digit represents the fuel type, and they are D for Diesel; C for CNG and or LNG since 2007; H for diesel-electric hybrids; E for electric trolleybuses; F for Fuel cell buses; U for gasoline-electric hybrids; and L for LNG buses until 2004.

The fifth digit signify the model of the bus. 1 one was for Canadian built high floor buses for Winnipeg and Toronto in 1987. 2 is for High and Low Floor buses until 2004. 3 for Invero buses, 4 for Low Floor buses with the original style from 2004 until 2010. 5 for Low Floor Buses with the restyled ends. 7 for Low Floor BRT buses; and 8 for Xcelsior buses. If there was a number 6 is this digit, I'm not sure if it was for high floor buses, but can someone clarify that?

Digit number six represented the length of the bus which was: A and B for 40' high floor buses built in Canada. C and D for 40' high floor buses built in the USA. E for 40' suburban buses. F for 40' low floor buses since 2004; G for 35' low floor buses from 2002 to 2004. J for 35' high floor buses. K for 35' low floor buses since 2004. L for 40' low floor buses until 2004. M for 60' high floor buses built in Canada. N for 60' high floor buses built in the USA. P was thought to be for 60' high floor buses, but that is unknown. S is for 35' low floor buses until 2002. T for 30' low floor buses until 2004. U for 60' low floor buses until 2004. V for 30' low floor buses since 2004. W for 45' suburban buses; and Y for 60' low floor buses since 2004.

The seventh digit is the engine code for the bus: A & E were for Detroit Diesel 6V71 engines. B for Cummins Westport ISL G since 2007. C & G for Detroit Diesel 6V92 engines. D for Cummins L10 engines. K & L for Detroit Diesel Series 50. L was also for DDS50G. M for DDS50 on 60' buses. N for DD Series 40. P for Cummins C8.3, later CUM ISC, and also for CUM C Gas Plus. R for Cummins ISB. S for Cummins M11, later CUM ISM. T for DD Series 60. U for Cummins ISL on 60' buses. V for Cummins ISL. W for Caterpillar C9 on 60' buses only. Y for Fort Triton V10 on gasoline-electric buses only; and Z for John Deere 6081 on CNG buses only. A and J were also for electric-trolleybuses in the mid 2000s.

The eighth position which I don't know had a 1 or a 0, hopefully someone will know,

Ninth digit was the check digit.

Digit 10 was for the model year.

Position 11 was the plant code which is currently A (originally P) for Winnipeg, MB; B (originally U) for St. Cloud, MN; and C (originally S?) for Crookston, MN. D and E for the plant code is unknown.

And finally positions 12 to 17 is the serial number for the buses.

Hope this helps everyone who is a bus fanatic, and if there are any corrections to be made, you can post it.

Stalwart23

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Thank you for this. I know a little bit about VIN codes for production cars, however, I can see here that there are no similarities between buses and passenger vehicles. This also answers another question I've had for a while, namely, which engine is used for the gasoline electric hybrid buses.

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Hi Stalwart23:

Thanks for posting the many VINs that you've found recently on the board. They're much appreciated!

I can add some information to your already significant and detailed explanation about New Flyer's VIN coding:

You're correct about the country identifier, and it is combined with the manufacturer's code in positions 2-3 to identify one builder. NFI has used 1FY, 2FY and 5FY as you describe. A builder in another country could have "FY" in positions 2-3 but with a different country code.

Positions 4-8 describe any builder's vehicle and there are a large number of things that they can represent. However, we're lucky that only 5 things are allowed for buses and there are only 5 positions. The 5 are engine, brake system, model, type and series.

The fourth position for NFI is actually the vehicle type. Your description of the codes is right on.

The fifth position is the series (not model) for NFI. 1 represented the original structure that NFI inherited from Flyer Industries, and when the structure of the high floor buses was revised in early 1988 the code was changed to 2. So yes, only a couple of orders for Winnipeg and Toronto were series 1, and series 2 also applied to the low-floor models. Series 3 was the Invero. The structure of the low-floor buses was changed in 2004 which caused them to use a new series number for the LF models: 4. The LFR used 5 a year later. As you noted, 7 is the LFA series and 8 is the new Xcelsior. I haven't found any vehicles with code 6 in position 5 either.

The sixth position indicates the model (not length) for NFI. When NFI first defined their codes for the high-floor coaches they used a different one for each of the possible door frame arrangements for some reason. This practice wasn't carried to the low-floor vehicles though. For the D40 they used A if the bus had narrow front and rear doors, B for narrow front and wide rear, C for wide front and wide rear doors, D for wide front and narrow rear and E for narrow front only (GO Transit D40S buses). They also allocated codes for the D35 buses on the same basis. This practice reserved codes F, G, H, J and K for this model, although not all were ever used. The AC Transit coaches from 1988 had code J for a wide front, narrow rear door arrangement. The D40LF model got the next code in 1988: L which it kept until the 2004 change (see series 4 above), so the D60 buses started with code M. The exit door arrangement influenced the D60 codes since they all had wide front doors, so codes M (2 wide exit doors), N (1 wide rear door), P (1 narrow exit door) and R (2 narrow exit doors) were used for this model. NFI then introduced additional low-floor models in 1996, so code S represented the D35LF, T was used for the D30LF and U was used for the D60LF until the type change in 2004. Since 2004 code Y has been used for the 60LF & D60LFR buses, code F for the 40LF & 40LFR, K for the 35LF & 35LFR (because F & K were never used for the D35) and V for the 30LF & 30LFR. The codes apply for all fuel-types and styles: D, E, GE and DE hybrid models and the BRT-style and Xcelsior models.

The seventh position is the engine code as you've noted and your code list is about the same as what I have for NFI. The reason that there are two codes from some engines is because a new code has to be assigned if there is more than a 30-horsepower variation in the engine. So DD Series 50 engines were code L (or K) while the 300-315hp S50 was code M. The code doesn't change based on which type of fuel the engine uses so it could be NG or Diesel with the same code. Code J was used for the Vancouver trolley buses, but I'm not sure which code the Philly ones have.

The eighth position indicates the brake system type and is always 0 or 1 but I don't know what the difference is.

Position 11 for the plant codes changes based on where the coaches are final-assembled. Coaches finished in Winnipeg used P (the plant is on Pandora Avenue) until 2004. Coaches finished in Union City, CA in 1988 and 1989, Grand Forks, ND from 1990 to March 1996, Crookston, MN from April 1996 to 2004 and St. Cloud from 2002-2004 all used code U (United States) so you can't tell which plant they came from other than perhaps by the date. Since 2004 code A has indicated final assembly in Winnipeg, B indicates St. Cloud, C indicates Crookston and D and E have also been used on some coaches completed in Canada.

This is probably information overload but it's good to have what we know published somewhere.

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Thanks for posting the info, it's interesting.

So let me see if I have this straight:

5FYD2GP172U023600

Means

Country: US, Manufacturer: New Flyer, Fuel: Diesel, Series: pre-2004, Model: D35/35LF 2002-2004, Engine: ISC, Brake System 1, Check digit 7, Model year 2, US built pre-2004

Here's a decoding chart I threw together in case anyone's interested.

New_Flyer_VIN_Codes.pdf

New_Flyer_VIN_Codes.pdf

New_Flyer_VIN_Codes.pdf

New_Flyer_VIN_Codes.pdf

New_Flyer_VIN_Codes.pdf

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For those who are wondering what the number 6 in the fifth position of a New Flyer Industries VIN is. It was for remaining orders of high floor buses, it fact there was only one order of high floor buses built after 2004.

They were 15 60-foot high-floor buses for Metro Transit in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, delivered in 2006. The respected VINs will be posted at a later time.

Stalwart23

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