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Re: urq VINs

In message <362250B9.35C11312@nh.ultranet.com> Huw Powell writes:

> I still think they grabbed the VIN plates out of a box full of them just
> like all the other parts, whatever came to hand became the next car...
> they weren't built in numerical "order".  Just a half baked "Letter at 3
> AM" (anyone remember Mike Ventura?)  Oh well.

At least in the main sequence, the MBs' VINs seem to be strictly
sequential.  That was in 1988/9, though.

There _are_ some quite serious problems with the VINs.  On the MB,
the VIN number (specifically after 85-J-900643) is used to call a wider
cam belt and pulleys with a different number of teeth.  This is
incorrect - the change is not chassis dependent but engine dependent.

Starting at 85-J-900748, Audi built a series of about 50 ur-quattros
with 'back level' engines, i.e., engines using the previous 'narrow'
timing belt and gears.  If you order a timing belt for a VIN between
85-J-900748 and 85-J-900780 from an Audi dealer, you'll get the wrong

Unless it's for 85-J-900764 or 85-J-900765 - which appear in the middle
of this series of 50, but with 'later' engines.

And I won't even _think_ about flywheels.  Some of the changes are not
even documented on the parts fiche.  There are some cars, for example,
that have different sized 'tongues' on the hub carrier where it slides
into the wishbone arm.  These are identified "by a dab of paint on the

 Phil Payne
 Phone: 0385 302803   Fax: 01536 723021
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