BMW Z3 Service Manual:
1996, 1997, 1998, 1999,
2000, 2001, 2002
BMW Z3 Service Manual: 1996-2002
BMW Z3 Vehicle Identification and VIN Decoder
This service manual covers 1996 through 2002 BMW Z3 models (Z3 Roadster, Z3 Coupe, M Roadster and M Coupe), and is specifically designed to cover only those models built for sale in the United States.
BMW, and most accessories and parts sellers specializing in BMWs, refer to the Z3 family of cars covered by this manual as the E36/7 (Roadster) and the E36/8 (Coupe) platform. E36 is BMW’s internal code for the basic platform shared by all of the cars covered by this manual. The 7 and 8 are a further classification within the E36 family. Except for the engine and a few other components, the models covered by this manual share many of same components such as suspension parts, body panels and the interior pieces. When ordering parts, especially body parts, knowing the platform code may be helpful. Engine codes for Z3 models are listed in 100 Engine?General.
Some of the information in this manual applies only to cars of a particular model year or range of years. For example, ?1999 m.y.? refers to the 1999 model year. The model year does not necessarily match the calendar year in which the car was manufactured or sold. To be sure of the model year of a particular car, check the vehicle identification number (VIN) on the car.
The VIN is a unique sequence of 17 characters assigned by BMW to identify each individual car. 4USCN33492LK51496 is an example. Each of the 17 letters and numbers indicates certain facts about the car and its manufacture.
Your BMW's VIN can be found on the top of the dashboard, on the driver’s side where the number can be seen through the windshield. The 10th character is the model year code. The letters ?I?, ?O?, ?Q? and ?U? are not used for model year designation, for example, ?T? for 1996 m.y., ?V? for 1997 m.y., etc. This manual covers BMW Z3 models for the model years 1996 through 2002. The table below explains some of the various codes in the VIN for models covered by this manual.
|VIN Position||Description||Decoding Information|
|1||Manufacturing country||W Germany|
4, 5 USA
|2||Manufacturer||B BMW AG, Germany|
U BMW USA
|3||Vehicle Type||A Passenger vehicle|
S Passenger vehicle (Motorsport)
|4||Model line||C Z3 Roadster, coupe (1996-2002)|
|5||Series||H Z3 roadster, 1.9L, 2.5L, 3.0L (1996-2000)|
J Z3 roadster, 2.8L (1997-1998)
K Z3 coupe (1999-2002), M roadster (1999-2000)
L M roadster (2001-2002)
M M coupe (2000)
N M coupe (2001-2002)
|6||Body type||5 Z3 coupe, z3 roadster (2001)|
7 Z3 coupe, Z3 roadster
9 Z3 roadster, M roadster, M coupe
|7||Vehicle type||3 passenger vehicle|
|8||Restraint system||2,3 Manual belts with Dual front airbags|
4 Manual belts with Dual front and side airbags
|9||Check Digit||0-9 or X, calculated by NHTSA|
|10||Model Year||T 1996|
|11||Assembly Plant||L Spartanburg, South Carolina|
|12-17||Serial Number||Sequential production number of the specific vehicle|