from the April 1982 RootesReview:
Q: What do the letters after the chassis number signify?
A: These letters give information on the way the car was equipped by the factory, where it was intended for sale, and what the body type was. If the car was equipped with certain options, these were indicated by letter code after the chassis number, such as:
E – Rootes Easidrive automatic
BW – Borg Warner automatic
OD – overdrive
GT – Grand Turismo (or GT model)
POS – power steering
H – high compression
M – medium compression
L – low compression
The next letter indicates where the car was to be sold, the codes are:
L – left-hand drive export model (most of our cars)
H – right-hand drive home market
R – right-hand drive export model
X- CKD (‘kit form’) left-hand drive export model
W – CKD right-hand drive export model
E – CKD riqht-hand drive home market specs for export
The next letter codes translate into:
C – convertible
H – hardtop
P – pick-up
R – roadster
U – station wagon (estate car)
V – van
X – chassis only
The next letters codes are:
H – Ministry of Supply
O – standard
P – police specs
X – non-standard
(Note: The numeral “3” also was used in this spot to indicate the car was equipped with a small bore engine for Bermuda.)
Tigers have an additional two letters FE for Ford engine. Most Alpines in the United States would have their chassis from number suffixed LRX, while most Tigers are suffixed LRXFE.
Q: What is the small plate with three letters and six numbers?
A: That is the assembly line plate. The three letters tell line produced the car — JAL is for Jensen and SAL for Sunbeam.
Q: My Alpine has a plate on the left-hand side of the motor that was painted over by a previous owner. What information was on the plate?
A: This would be a replacement engine plate. It shows (or showed) the cylinder oversize and the crank undersize.
Q: Where is the engine number plate
A: Tigers have them on the valve cover (N/S) and Alpines have them on the block above the fuel pump (O/S).
Q: What are the different color codes? I was told my car was the wrong color.
A: Sunbeam had about 130 different color codes, but not all were used on Alpines and Tigers. The colors that were used are:
1 – Embassy Black
9 – Metallic Grey
11 – Thistle Grey
19 – Moonstone
30 – Seacrest Green
39 – Carnival Red
40 – Glen Green
52 – Lake Blue
53 – Wedgewood Blue
58 – Midnight Blue
61 – Quartz Blue Metallic
67 – Light Green Metallic
68 – Autumn Gold Metallic
76 – Balmoral Grey
86 – Forest Green (BRG)
92 – Artie White
100 – Mediterranean Blue
102 – Oxford Blue
106 – Commodore Blue
107 – Holly Green
108 – Polar White
109 – Orchid Green
122 – Signal Red
127 – Turquoise Blue Metallic
130 – Gunmetal Metallic
Playmate Pink was not a standard Tiger color, it cost an additional $850.