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Book Ends, What’s in a VIN?

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About 14 years ago, I saw a 1978 Porsche 928 on Craigslist for sale in Palm Springs. I was living in So. Cal at the time. It was VIN #00057. That’s a pretty early number I thought, maybe it’s worth a more money than your typical 928. I remember reading the first ten 928 VINs were not used, reserved for press cars or pre-production or something, so the first public VIN sold was #11. It was definitely worth exploring, so in order to glean more mud from the waters, I turned to the forums. Here’s the trail on Rennlist. Spoiler alert, save the car but not for the VIN. Whether you have VIN 57 or 257, at this point it’s just an early number and no more valuable than the rest. There were no production changes or anything that made an early numbered car special.

That being said, when you have the first VIN of a production vehicle that’s pretty special. Couple it with the last vehicle produced for that model year and you have a valuable duo. The book end Cadillacs pictured here are that unique pair, first and last. And remember, if you ain’t first your last. Don and I came across this collection while picking up a car from storage in the same location, under the same owner. The cars are stunning, concours restorations. What a thrill it would be to discover and purchase one of these VINs. It’s the stuff folk lore and chasing cars is made of. A unique VIN known but not seen for years until someone finds the car on Craiglist. Then it becomes more than just a number.

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