Model year

Last updated

The model year (sometimes abbreviated "MY") is a method of describing the version of a product which has been produced over multiple years. The model year may or may not be the same as the calendar year in which the product was manufactured.

Contents

Automobiles

United States and Canada

Chevrolet Corvette C7 Convertible (Les chauds vendredis 2019).jpg
MY2019 Chevrolet Corvette

Automobiles in the United States and Canada are identified and regulated by model year, whereas other markets use production date (month/year) to identify specific vehicles, and model codes in place of the "year" (model year) in the North American make-model-year identifier.

In technical documents generated within the auto industry and its regulating agencies such as the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and United States Environmental Protection Agency and Transport Canada and Environment Canada, the letters "MY" often precede the year (as in "MY2019" or "MY93"). Even without this prefix, however, in the North American context it is usually the model year rather than the vehicle's calendar year of production that is being referred to.

The new model year typically begins in August to September of the preceding calendar year, though can be as early as February, such being the case for the fourth generation 2022 Acura MDX, which started production in January 2021. This was partly due to the advertising of a new model being coordinated with the launch of the new television season in late September, because of the heavy dependence between television to offer products from automakers to advertise, and the car companies to launch their new models at a high-profile time of year. [1] Imported cars use the model year convention in the U.S. and Canada, even when this system is not used for the same cars when sold in other countries.

The concept of yearly styling updates (a practice adopted from the fashion industry) was introduced to General Motors' range of cars by Alfred P. Sloan in the 1920s. This was an early form of planned obsolescence in the car industry, where yearly styling changes meant consumers could easily discern a car's newness, or lack of it. [2] Other major changes to the model range usually coincided with the launch of the new model year. The practice of beginning production of next year's model before the end of the year is also a long standing tradition in America, [1] for example the 1928 model year of the Ford Model A began production in October 1927 and the 1955 model year of the Ford Thunderbird began production in September 1954. [3] [4] [5]

For purposes such as VINs and emissions control, regulations allow cars of a given model year to be sold starting on January 1 of the previous calendar year. For example, a 2019 model year vehicle can legally go on sale starting January 1, 2018. [6] This has resulted in a few cars in the following model year being introduced in advertisements during the NFL Super Bowl in February. A notable example of an early model year launch would be the Ford Mustang, introduced as an early 1965 model (informally referred to as "1964½") in April 1964 at the World's Fair, several months before the usual start of the 1965 model year in August 1964.

For recreational vehicles, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission allows a manufacturer to use a model year up to two years before the date that the vehicle was manufactured. [7]

Other countries

In other countries, it is more common to identify specific vehicles by their year and month of production, and cars of a particular type by their generation, using terms such as "Mark III"[ citation needed ] or by the manufacturer's code for that kind of car (such as "BL" being the code for a Mazda 3 built between November 2008 and June 2013).

In Europe, the lesser use of model years as a descriptor is partly because since the 1980s many vehicles are introduced at the Geneva Motor Show in March, the Frankfurt Motor Show in September or the Paris Motor Show in September.[ citation needed ] New models have increasingly been launched in June or July.[ citation needed ]

As with the rest of Europe, the motor industry in the United Kingdom did not regularly make use of model years in the way common in the USA, since cars were not as regularly updated or altered. Some exceptions existed; for instance in the 1950s and 1960s the Rootes Group deliberately copied American practice and performed annual small alterations to its key models such as the Hillman Minx and the Humber Super Snipe. However these were still not identified by model years but by Series numbers, sometimes with alphabetical designations (such as the Minx Series IIIA, IIIB and IIIC) to distinguish what were mostly cosmetic updates rather than mechanical or structural improvements. As in America, the British motor industry did generally announce new models (or updates to existing ones) in September. However this was the norm long before it became practice in the USA and did not originate with the television season. Instead it began because the long-established practice in the manufacturing industries of the English Midlands, especially Coventry and Birmingham where the British car industry developed out of the established bicycle and machine tool trades, was to close factories and give workers a two-week holiday in August or September. This was used as a chance to renew tooling in the factory and was an ideal time to introduce new products which would begin production when the workers returned and the factory restarted. Thus the working year in the car industry ran from September to September. New or improved models would be announced in the summer and would be displayed at the British Motor Show which was held in October. Here they would be seen by the wider industry and buying public for the first time, just as the cars produced in the previous weeks began reaching the dealerships ready for sale. Therefore car models intended for sale during, say, 1960, would be announced and displayed in the third quarter of 1959, with sales beginning before the end of the year, and any improvements intended for 1961 would be announced in September 1960 and displayed at the 1960 Motor Show in October.

This convention was not absolute; for instance the original Vauxhall Victor was officially announced in February 1957 with sales beginning later the same month, and subsequent additions and updates to the Victor range were all introduced in February - notably Vauxhall's factory was outside the traditional centre of the industry, being in Luton, and so did not follow the common working calendar. Being owned by General Motors, Vauxhall also generally made minor changes to its cars year by year, even referring to 'model years' in some of its literature, but these did not have the same official weight or significant to buyers as they did in America. During the 1960s British car makers began giving journalists access to upcoming models earlier in the year to get announcements out ahead of their rivals and clear of the busy September period. This developed into increasingly lavish and sophisticated media and marketing events happening earlier and earlier in the year. Changes to working practices, the in-roads made to the British market by car makers from other countries and the decline in market share by British firms finally led to the tradition of new models being introduced in September being abandoned, although the British Motor Show continued to be held in October.

VIN encoding

The standardized format of the vehicle identification number (VIN) used in the United States and Canada includes the model year of the vehicle as the 10th digit. The actual date that the vehicle was produced is not part of the VIN, but it is required to be shown on vehicle safety certification label.

Other products

In addition to automobiles, some other products that often have model years include:

See also

Related Research Articles

Vehicle identification number

A vehicle identification number (VIN) is a unique code, including a serial number, used by the automotive industry to identify individual motor vehicles, towed vehicles, motorcycles, scooters and mopeds, as defined in ISO 3779 and ISO 4030.

Vauxhall Motors English automotive manufacturing and distribution company

Vauxhall Motors Limited is a British car manufacturer based in Chalton, Bedfordshire, England, a sister brand of Opel and since January 2021, a part of Stellantis.

Vauxhall Chevette Motor vehicle

The Vauxhall Chevette supermini or compact car was manufactured by Vauxhall in the United Kingdom from 1975 to 1984. It was Vauxhall's version of the "T-Car" small-car family from Vauxhall's parent General Motors (GM), and based primarily on the Opel Kadett C. The family also included the Isuzu Gemini in Japan, the Holden Gemini in Australia, the Chevrolet Chevette in the United States, Canada, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador and Argentina, and in the U.S. and Canada it was also rebadged as the Pontiac Acadian/Pontiac T1000.

The automotive industry in the United Kingdom is now best known for premium and sports car marques including Aston Martin, Bentley, Caterham Cars, Daimler, Jaguar, Lagonda, Land Rover, Lister Cars, Lotus, McLaren, MG, Mini, Morgan and Rolls-Royce. Volume car manufacturers with a major presence in the UK include Honda, Nissan, Toyota and Vauxhall Motors. Commercial vehicle manufacturers active in the UK include Alexander Dennis, Ford, IBC Vehicles, Leyland Trucks and London Electric Vehicle Company.

British Leyland 1968–1986 automotive manufacturing conglomerate

British Leyland was an automotive engineering and manufacturing conglomerate formed in the United Kingdom in 1968 as British Leyland Motor Corporation Ltd (BLMC), following the merger of Leyland Motors and British Motor Holdings. It was partly nationalised in 1975, when the UK government created a holding company called British Leyland, later renamed BL in 1978. It incorporated much of the British-owned motor vehicle industry, which in 1968 had a 40 percent share of the UK car market, with its history going back to 1895.

Vauxhall Cavalier car model

The Vauxhall Cavalier was a large family car that was sold primarily in the UK by Vauxhall from 1975 to 1995. It was based on a succession of Opel designs throughout its production life, during which it was built in three incarnations. The first generation of Cavalier, launched in 1975 and produced until 1981, was based on the existing Opel Ascona and Opel Manta with a few minor visual differences.

Rebranding (automobile) Changing badges of the same car

Rebranding in the automotive industry is a form of market segmentation used by automobile manufacturers around the world. To allow for product differentiation without designing or engineering a new model or brand, a manufacturer creates a distinct automobile by applying a new badge or trademark to an existing product line.

Economy car is a term mostly used in the United States for cars designed for low-cost purchase and operation. Typical economy cars are small, lightweight, and inexpensive to both produce and purchase. Stringent design constraints generally force economy car manufactures to be inventive. Many innovations in automobile design were originally developed for economy cars, such as the Ford Model T and the Austin Mini.

GM J platform Motor vehicle platform

The General MotorsJ platform, or J-body, is an automobile platform that was used by General Motors for compact cars from the 1982 to 2005 model years. The third generation of compact cars designed by GM, the J-body marked the introduction of front-wheel drive for its compact model lines, replacing the rear-wheel drive H platform. The J-body was marketed as world car, with GM brands selling versions of the platform in North America, Europe, Australia, and Japan; in markets outside of North America, the model line was packaged as a mid-size car.

Simca 1307 Motor vehicle

The Simca 1307 was a large family car produced by Chrysler Europe and subsequently PSA Peugeot Citröen from 1975 to 1986. Codenamed 'C6' in development, the car was styled in the United Kingdom by Roy Axe and his team at Whitley, and the car was engineered by Simca at Poissy in France.

Bedford Vehicles, usually shortened to just Bedford, was a brand of vehicle manufactured by Vauxhall Motors, then a subsidiary of multinational corporation General Motors. Established in April 1931 and constructing commercial vehicles, Bedford Vehicles was a leading international lorry brand, with substantial export sales of light, medium, and heavy lorries throughout the world.

Lincoln Mark series Motor vehicle

The Continental Mark series is a series of personal luxury cars that was produced by Ford Motor Company. The nomenclature came into use with the Continental Mark II for 1956, which was a successor to the Lincoln Continental of 1939–1948. Following the discontinuation of the Mark II, Ford continued the use of the Mark series on Continental vehicles from 1958 to 1960. Following a hiatus, Lincoln-Mercury relaunched the Continental Mark series during 1968 and would produce six successive generations through the 1998 model year.

General Motors Europe

General Motors Europe was responsible for the operation of General Motors ("GM") businesses in Europe. The subsidiary was established by GM in 1986 and operated 14 production and assembly facilities in 9 countries, and employed around 54,500 people. GM's core European brands were Vauxhall and Opel, which both sell much the same range of cars in different markets. GM also owned the Swedish brand Saab until early 2010 and sold Chevrolet models between 2005 and 2015. The U.S. brand Cadillac is imported into Europe in small quantities. In 2009, General Motors (GM) announced to move its European headquarters from Zürich, Switzerland to Rüsselsheim, Germany to strengthen its German subsidiary Opel.

Holden New Zealand Limited, named until 1994 as General Motors New Zealand Limited, was a subsidiary of General Motors of Detroit and distributes General Motors' motor vehicles, engines, components and parts in New Zealand.

Ford of Europe Automotive manufacturing subsidiary of Ford Motor Company

Ford of Europe GmbH is a subsidiary company of Ford Motor Company founded in 1967 in Cork, Ireland, with headquarters in Cologne, Germany.

Automotive industry in Germany Overview of the automotive industry in Germany

The automotive industry in Germany is one of the largest employers in the world, with a labor force of over 857,336 (2016) working in the industry.

Ford Dagenham Automotive factory

Ford Dagenham is a major automotive factory located in Dagenham, London, operated by the Ford of Britain subsidiary of Ford Motor Company. The plant opened in 1931 and has produced 10,980,368 cars and more than 39,000,000 engines in its history. It covers around 475 acres and has received over £800 million of capital investment since 2000.

Ford Motor Company American multinational automaker

The Ford Motor Company, commonly known as Ford, is an American multinational automaker that has its main headquarters in Dearborn, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit. It was founded by Henry Ford and incorporated on June 16, 1903. The company sells automobiles and commercial vehicles under the Ford brand, and most luxury cars under the Lincoln brand. Ford also owns Brazilian SUV manufacturer Troller, an 8% stake in Aston Martin of the United Kingdom and a 32% stake in Jiangling Motors. It also has joint-ventures in China, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, and Russia. The company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and is controlled by the Ford family; they have minority ownership but the majority of the voting power.

Vauxhall Ellesmere Port

Vauxhall Ellesmere Port is a motor vehicle assembly plant, located in the town of Ellesmere Port, south of the Wirral Peninsula in Cheshire, England. It has always built small/medium Vauxhall/Opel vehicles, beginning with the Vauxhall Viva, and is now one of two plants in Europe building the Opel Astra. It is owned by the global car manufacturer Stellantis.

Automotive industry in the Philippines Overview of the automotive industry in the Philippines


The automotive industry in the Philippines is the 9th largest in the Asia-Pacific region, with approximately 273.4 thousand vehicles sold in 2019. Most of the vehicles sold and built in the Philippines are from foreign brands, for the most part, the Philippines is dominated by Japanese automobile manufacturers like most of its ASEAN neighbors. The automobile production in the country is covered under the Philippine Motor Vehicle Development Program being implemented by the Board of Investments. In addition, there are also a small number of independent firms who assemble and fabricate jeepneys and other similar vehicles, using surplus engines and drivetrain parts mostly from Japan.

References

  1. 1 2 Carter, Bill (September 23, 2008). "A Television Season That Lasts All Year". The New York Times. Retrieved April 5, 2010.
  2. "Annual model change was the result of affluence, technology, advertising". Automotive News. US. September 14, 2008. Retrieved February 3, 2018.
  3. "Ford Model A Tudor on Assembly Line, Ford Rouge Plant, Dearborn, Michigan, October 21, 1927". www.thehenryford.org. Retrieved July 29, 2019.
  4. "Classic T-Bird Differences". www.portholeauthority.com. Retrieved July 29, 2019.
  5. "Revisiting Classics: The Original Ford Thunderbird (1955-1957)". www.drivezing.com. September 13, 2018. Retrieved July 29, 2019.
  6. For legal purposes, various definitions for "model year" are given in various federal laws, including 42 USC 7521(b)(3)(A), 26 USC 4064(b)(4), and 49 USC 32901(a)(15)
  7. "What Year Is It? Is RV's Model Year Important, and What Does Law Require?". www.faegrebd.com. Retrieved July 26, 2019.