Birth Certificate for Your Car

Octagon Newsletter February 2000

By Doug Ingram

If you don't already have one, you might want to obtain a British Motor Industry Heritage Trust Production Record Trace Certificate. It's like having a birth certificate for your car.

BMIHT is a registered charity located in Gaydon, Warwick in central England. It was established to collect and preserve vehicles, artefacts, and records from those companies that came together over the years to form the Rover Group. The Trust owns the largest collection of British vehicles in the world more than 300, of which 180 are on display in their museum at any time. They maintain microfilm copies of original production records, which are searched to produce your Certificate. The vehicles for which records are kept are listed at the end of this article.

The certificate measures 8 1/4" x 11 5/8", and is mailed to you in a hardback envelope. Information provided on the certificate includes the car/chassis number, the original engine, body, gearbox, rear axle and key numbers, the original colours, the build date, the destination dealer, and the accessories fitted. The fee for the search and certificate is 25.00 pounds sterling and can be paid by bank draft or credit card.

The following information is required:

your full name and address

the make and model of the vehicle

the car or chassis number

the name the certificate is to be issued to

More information is requested if available:

the car's engine number

the car's body number

any other identifying numbers

Send this information, along with payment or credit card details, to:

British Motor Industry Heritage Trust

Archive Department, Heritage Motor Centre

Banbury Road

Gaydon, Warwick CV35 OBJ


Telephone: 01926 645074 or Fax: 01926 641555

More information is available at their web site:

Records for the following makes and models are available:

Austin 1945‑1969 (cars and commercials, most models)

Austin‑Healey 1953‑1971 (Longbridge and Abingdon built, not Warwick)

Land Rover 1948‑1979 (Series I, II, IIa, IIb, III)

Metropolitan 1953‑1961 (Nash, Hudson, Austin)

Mini 1959‑1969 (Austin, Morris, Mini Cooper)

MG 1953‑1980 (from TF Midget and ZA Magnette (not TC, TD, YA, YT, or YB)

Morris 1928‑1971 (cars and some light commercials (not Morris‑Commercial)

Range Rover 1969‑1979 (all models)

Riley 1953‑1969 (from Pathfinder, not 1.5 litre or 2.5 litre)

Rover 1945‑1986 (all models)

Standard 1945‑1963 (cars and light commercials)

Triumph 1946‑1984 (all models)

Vanden Plas Princess 1959‑1980 (plus many earlier Vanden Plas bodied cars)

Wolseley 1901‑1930 & 1949‑1975 (most models)


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