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Where is the VIN Number On a Motorcycle or Motorbike?

Where is the VIN Number On a Motorcycle or Motorbike?
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Where is the VIN Number On a Motorcycle or Motorbike?

The VIN number has been an important aspect of automobiles, and ever since it was standardized it has become a means of accessing vehicle specifications, even more than that it also serves as a means of accessing detailed historical information.

The acronym VIN stands for Vehicle Identification Number, it is a unique alphanumeric identifier assigned to every vehicle by the manufacturer. 

It is therefore important to know and find where this code is on any vehicle, this article will focus on where to find the VIN on any Motorcycle. 

The early VINs were not standardized, and they varied by the manufacturer, in 1969, a change was effected, during this period a law required that all vehicles especially cars make their VINs visible. 

By 1981, it became a standard for all major vehicles including motorcycles to have a 17-character VIN. 


While motorcycle fatalities are unfortunately on the rise, with a 29% increase in deaths over the past 10 years, there’s also a positive statistic to balance that out: motorcycles are incredibly fuel-efficient. Compared to the average car, motorcycles can achieve up to 3 times better fuel economy. This is due to their lighter weight, smaller engines, and aerodynamic design. In today’s environmentally conscious world, this makes motorcycles an interesting option for those seeking a more eco-friendly transportation choice.

Why It is Difficult to Find Motorcycle VIN

Locating the VIN on a motorcycle can be difficult due to various factors:

  1. Unlike cars, motorcycles lack a standardized location for the VIN.
  2. The VIN location can vary based on the make, model, and year of the bike, such as on the frame, steering neck, swingarm, or hidden under a panel.
  3. Motorcycles are smaller than cars, leaving less space for the VIN, which might be engraved in a small font or hidden in a tight spot.
  4. Dirt and debris can easily cover the VIN, especially in off-road conditions, making it hard to see.
  5. Over time, the VIN can fade or become worn, further complicating its readability.

Where to Find the VIN Number on a Motorcycle

The following places are the general areas where one can find the VIN on a motorcycle.

The motorcycle’s VIN can be found here:

  1. Right side of the frame neck: Look for a stamped metal plate near the steering stem.
  2. Lower right of the windshield: This location appears on some models, mainly earlier ones.
  3. Under the hood of the front engine: Check for a stamped metal plate on some models.
  4. Registration and insurance documents: You can also find the VIN on these documents.

Top 5 Motorcycle Brands VIN Location


Aid to finding VIN 


  • The right side of the steering head. Look for a stamped metal tag, usually on the right side.

  • The left side of the frame above the motor

  • Vehicle registration papers


  • Steering head, below the handlebars. Look for a stamped metal area, usually on the right side.

  • Left front frame rail behind the wheel.

  • Vehicle registration documents.

Harley Davidson 

  • The right side of the frame near the steering head

  • Front downtube

  • Headstock 

  • Engine

BMW Motorrad

  • on the steering neck

  • on the engine onto the engine case

  • on the frame, typically the frame tubes or other visible metal plate

  • on the vehicle registration

  • on the DMV-validated title


  • Steering head, below the handlebars (turn the handlebars to the left for easier access).

  • Left front frame rail behind the wheel.

  • The VIN should also be listed on the registration documents.


Electric motorcycles are rapidly gaining popularity, offering an even more eco-friendly alternative. The global market for electric motorcycles is expected to grow by over 40% annually through 2027.

Get a Window Sticker for any Motorcycle

Get a Window Sticker for any Motorcycle

If you’re buying a motorcycle, you need to be sure of its specifications and engine information. With a sticker, you can view the vehicle’s standard equipment, engine specifications, weight rating, fuel type, and lots more

In addition to helping motorcycle enthusiasts locate the VIN number on their bikes,and get a window sticker our site also provides valuable information on vehicle history reports.

 These reports are essential tools for buyers and sellers alike, offering detailed insights into a motorcycle’s past. By inputting the VIN number into our system, users can access a wealth of information, including accident history, maintenance records, title status, and more. 

This data empowers consumers to make informed decisions when buying or selling a motorcycle, ensuring transparency and peace of mind throughout the transaction process.

Is the Engine Number the same as the motorcycle VIN?

The plain answer is no, the engine number is quite different from the VIN, below is a table showing the difference between the two 

Engine Number 

  • A unique identifier is assigned to the specific engine by the manufacturer.

  • Typically located on the engine block, often near the base of the cylinders or on the crankcase.

  • Used for tracking engine production, warranty purposes, and sometimes identifying stolen engines.

VIN Number 

  • A unique 17-character code that identifies a specific vehicle.

  • Located on the frame, typically near the steering head or on the left side near the footpeg.

  • Used for registration, titling, insurance, and identifying stolen vehicles.

While these numbers under consideration are not the same, it has been noticed that the last few digits of the engine number might match the last few digits of the VIN.

This situation surely does not imply they are identical but could be a coincidence or indicate the engine originally came with that particular motorcycle.

In some pre-1989 motorcycles, the chassis and engine numbers may have been identical, but this is not common practice anymore.

Importance of VIN on Motorcycles

What if we have no fingerprints? Identification and criminal issues will be difficult to deal with, won’t they? The Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) on a motorcycle is much more than just a random string of characters. It acts as the unique fingerprint of your bike, playing an important role in several key areas:

  1. Deterring Theft: The VIN is an important tool for law enforcement agencies in tracking and recovering stolen motorcycles. Knowing the VIN helps them identify and locate stolen bikes more efficiently. Your VIN might also aid you in reporting your stolen bike. 
  2. Verifying Legitimacy: When buying a used motorcycle, checking the VIN against official records is crucial. This helps you avoid unknowingly purchasing a stolen or tampered-with vehicle.

Learning about the past: The VIN allows you to access the motorcycle’s history, including past ownership, accidents, repairs, and recalls. This information provides valuable insights into the bike’s condition and helps you make informed decisions about purchasing, owning, and maintaining it. A VIN check is possible using the tool on this website. 

The VIN is essential for protecting your motorcycle against theft and for gaining valuable insights into its history. Always keep your VIN readily available and use it to verify information before purchasing a used motorcycle or when accessing service records.

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