Tesla's got a surprise easter egg and the code is 'ELON'

Tesla's Elon Musk has a thing for video games and he's a big fan of easter eggs (e.g. in-game surprises/treats). Musk is famous for integrating these easter eggs into Tesla's fleet of vehicles in fun (and sometimes mysterious) ways. Most recently, it looks like he's included a surprise where one might least expect it. 

Left to right: Elon Musk, Tesla QA staff at Giga Berlin checking a Model Y, VIN sticker of the 1000th test Model Y produced at Giga Berlin with the word ELON in it (Sources: Daniel Oberhaus / Flickr [CC BY 2.0], Tesla, Sawyer Merritt / Twitter respectively, creative by Iqtidar Ali / TeslaOracle.com)

Recently, the official VIN sticker for the 1000th Tesla Model Y produced at Giga Berlin surfaced on Twitter. In an intriguing twist, this vehicle identification number (VIN) has the word ELON if you read it carefully and "crack the code" properly.

Tesla influencer Sawyer Merritt’s source from Giga Berlin reported that the factory had produced 1000 Model Y electric SUVs recently.

Twitter: Sawyer Merritt

The VIN code in the above image reads: XP7YGCELONB001000 — is it just a coincidence or is Elon Musk behind this prank? We will probably never know for sure. But it definitely ignited interest from Tesla fans. Note: to decode the VIN refer to the guide below.

The vehicle information sticker from the Giga Berlin-made Model Y VIN 1000 contains some additional information about the vehicle as well — like the additional serial code under the VIN that reads as GFBB-GA1-C1-00879. The code GFBB refers to Gigafactory Berlin-Brandenburg. Meanwhile, the rest of it is probably referring to the building, floor, and production line where the vehicle was built.

There is also a battery code on this vehicle info badge that reads 43 as the value. This code is also present in Fremont-made Model 3 and Model Ys and refers to the 2170 form factor cells. Therefore, these initial 1000 units are not using the next-gen 4680 form factor cells — learn more on this at tesla-info.com.

The rest of the sticker provides the following information in addition to the VIN: Color: Solid Black; Country Code: DE (Germany); Drivetrain: AWD; Body Type: Sedan; Chassis: P (1993 – 2023); Interior: BL (Black); Seats: 5; Wheels: 21″. 

Tesla first received permission to build an initial 2000 units at Giga Berlin by the local government prior to the automaker's upcoming efforts to scale production for mass deliveries to customers in Europe. Recently, on Friday, Tesla received official approval to begin production at Giga Berlin.  

So how can you decode a Tesla VIN for model year 2022? It turns out you can decode a vehicle identification number (VIN) using the following guide. It will also help in deciphering the information hidden in the above VIN for the 1000th Model Y produced at Giga Berlin. See below...

  • Digit 1 – 3: Word Manufacturer Identifier (WMI)
  • Digit 4: Make / Line
  • Digit 5: Body Type and Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR)
  • Digit 6: Restraint System
  • Digit 7: Fuel Type
  • Digit 8: Motor / Drive Unit
  • Digit 9: Check Digit
  • Digit 11: Plant of Manufacturer
  • Digit 11 – 17: Unique Serial Number


Written by: Iqtidar Ali. An earlier version of this article was originally published by Tesla Oracle. Revised update edited by EVANNEX