A Squish VIN, often referred to as a Short VIN, is a condensed version of the standard 17-character Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) used to identify vehicles. The Squish VIN excludes certain characters from the full VIN, typically retaining only those that provide essential information about the vehicle’s make, model, and engine type.

Purpose of a Squish VIN

  1. Simplified Tracking: Squish VINs are used for simplifying databases and internal tracking systems, where the full complexity of the standard VIN is not necessary.
  2. Compatibility and Integration: In some legacy systems or specific software, space or format constraints may make the use of a full VIN cumbersome or incompatible.
  3. Quick Reference: They provide a quick way to reference a vehicle without using the full VIN, which is particularly useful in parts catalogs and service records.

How is a Squish VIN formed?

A Squish VIN is derived by removing certain characters from the standard VIN, usually the check digit (9th character) and other less critical components that vary depending on the specific needs or industry standards.

Here’s how you can typically form a Squish VIN from a standard VIN:


Squish VIN: ZPBUA1ZLKLA00848

  • Remove the 9th character (check digit): ZPBUA1ZL 9 KLA00848
  • Remove characters that provide manufacturer or less critical information

When and where is a Squish VIN used?

Squish VINs are primarily used in:

  • Automotive Parts Dealers: To simplify parts catalogs and ensure compatibility without referencing the entire VIN.
  • Service Centers: To quickly pull up vehicle information without the need for the full VIN.
  • Used Car Dealerships: To manage inventory in systems where full VIN details are not necessary.

Understanding the concept of a Squish VIN can significantly streamline data management and retrieval processes. It is a practical adaptation of the full VIN tailored for specific uses where not all the detailed information conveyed by the standard VIN is required.

Example Use Cases

Vehicle sales

Car dealerships and used vehicle sales platforms can utilize the Rosetta Stone for Squish VINs to facilitate the transition between different VIN formats used in various documentation or system processes. By converting VINs, they can ensure consistency across sales records, vehicle history reports, and ownership documents.


  • Enhanced Transparency: Provides a clear and accurate history of the vehicle, increasing trust and confidence among buyers.
  • Regulatory Compliance: Helps in maintaining accurate records as required by law, especially important in jurisdictions where full VINs are necessary for legal documentation.
  • User Convenience: Simplifies the administrative aspects of buying and selling vehicles by ensuring all documents align without discrepancies in vehicle identification.

Service and Maintenance Tracking

Service centers and maintenance facilities often use Squish VINs for quick referencing in their internal systems. The Rosetta Stone system allows them to convert these Squish VINs to full VINs when detailed service records need to be accessed or updated, particularly when dealing with warranty claims or service histories.


  • Detailed Record-Keeping: Enables accurate tracking of a vehicle’s maintenance history, essential for warranty considerations and future servicing needs.
  • Quality Service: Assists in providing personalized and appropriate service recommendations based on the specific vehicle model and its history.
  • Operational Efficiency: Improves the speed and accuracy of retrieving vehicle information, enhancing workflow and customer service.

Insurance Underwriting and Risk Assessment

Insurance companies need accurate vehicle data to assess risk and set appropriate insurance premiums. The Squish VIN index enables insurers to convert Squish VINs provided in insurance applications into full VINs. This detailed information helps in determining the precise model, make, year, and specific features of the vehicle that can affect insurance rates, such as safety features, engine size, and likelihood of theft.


  • Improved Accuracy: Ensures that the risk associated with insuring a vehicle is accurately assessed based on comprehensive and precise vehicle data.
  • Customized Premiums: Allows insurers to tailor insurance premiums more accurately according to the specific risk profile of each vehicle.
  • Efficient Processing: Speeds up the underwriting process by automating part of the data collection and analysis, leading to quicker policy issuance and customer service.

Loan Origination and Processing for Lenders

Auto lenders use VINs to verify the details of the vehicle being purchased to ensure that the loan amount is appropriate for the vehicle’s value. The Rosetta Stone for Squish VINs facilitates the quick conversion of Squish VINs into full VINs, allowing lenders to access detailed information necessary for appraising the vehicle accurately and determining suitable loan terms.


  • Enhanced Loan Security: Provides lenders with accurate vehicle information to ensure the loan-to-value (LTV) ratio is kept within safe limits.
  • Fraud Reduction: Minimizes the risk of fraud by verifying the vehicle details provided by borrowers against authoritative databases.
  • Streamlined Loan Processing: Improves the efficiency of the loan approval process by quickly providing the necessary vehicle details to decision-makers.

Claims Processing and Management

In the event of an insurance claim due to an accident, theft, or damage, insurance companies often require detailed information about the vehicle to process the claim effectively. Using the Rosetta Stone for Squish VINs, claims adjusters can convert any Squish VINs encountered into full VINs, which are then used to pull comprehensive vehicle information necessary for accurate claim assessment.


  • Accurate Claim Settlement: Ensures that all claims are settled based on the accurate identification and verification of the vehicle involved.
  • Speed in Claims Resolution: Helps in speeding up the claims handling process by providing quick access to vehicle details necessary for assessing damage, repair costs, and compensation.
  • Consistency and Compliance: Maintains consistency in claims processing and adheres to regulatory requirements for thorough documentation and verification.

Drivly Vindex API – Coming Soon!

The Vindex API, or what we like to call it, the Rosetta Stone for VINs, is a robust system we designed to facilitate the conversion and cross-referencing between Squish VINs and full VINs.

This tool is crucial for building automotive businesses; including dealers, service providers, and parts suppliers, who need to transition between different VIN formats quickly and accurately.

Dual Lookup Capability:

  • Squish VIN to Full VIN Search: Enter a Squish VIN to retrieve the corresponding full VIN along with detailed vehicle information such as make, model, year, and specifications.
  • Full VIN to Squish VIN Conversion: Input a full VIN to obtain the Squish VIN and other relevant vehicle details.