This is your ultimate guide to Toyota forklift models.
So if you're wondering what each of those characters stands for, you’re in the right place.
Because you're going to learn:
- What a model number can tell you about your lift truck
- What each character in a model number stands for
- How to decipher forklift ages
You'll also get a couple of FREE downloadable forklift model lists – useful for quickly deciphering Toyota forklift models and determining the year of manufacture.
Let's dive in!
You can use a forklift's model number to differentiate one forklift from another or communicate about your forklift effectively.
But these model numbers are challenging to understand. Thankfully, this section will serve as your Toyota forklift model number decoder.
So, let's decipher some forklift model numbers.
The first thing to know is that Toyota forklift model numbers can be in two different formats, depending on their weight-lifting capacity:
- Core forklifts (up to 17,500 lbs. capacity)
- Heavy-duty forklifts (above 15,000 lbs. capacity)
Model Numbers for Core Toyota Forklifts
“Core” Toyota forklifts are the standard-duty models with lifting capacities of up to 17,500 lbs.
The model numbers for these lift trucks are usually 7-10 characters. We'll use the most common Toyota forklift model number 8FGCU25 for reference (this is a 5,000 lb. capacity, cushion-tire, gas-powered forklift).
The first character of a Toyota core forklift model number is usually a digit, denoting the series of the lift truck. The series is closely related to age. And while you can’t correlate the series number to a precise year, generally the series is sequential. That means a higher digit denotes a newer series. (We’ll talk a little bit more about age versus series in a later section).
The newest Toyota forklifts have model numbers starting with 8 or 9. For example, in the Toyota model number 8FGCU25, 8 is the series number – which also happens to be the latest series in that particular model (as of October 2022).
Fuel or Drive Type
The third character is also a letter denoting the equipment's fuel or drive type. It could be:
Tire Type or Truck Style
The fourth (and sometimes fifth) character in the model number is a letter and it tells you either the tire type installed on the truck or about the style of the truck itself.
- A = High-capacity forklift (7FGAU50)
- C = The forklift has cushion tires (e.g. 8FGCU25; note: if there’s no "C”, the truck has pneumatic tires, e.g. 8FGU25)
- H = The truck has a high-capacity battery (8FBCHU25)
- E = Can mean either a 3-wheeler electric (8FBE15U) or and end-controlled rider truck (8HBE30)
- P = Order picker (6BPU15)
- R = Reach truck (9BRU23)
- S = Stacker (8BWS13)
Manufacturing Location or Chassis Size Indicator
Toyota forklift model numbers show the manufacturing location and chase size. This is denoted in the 5th (sometimes 6th) character, which is also a letter. It could be:
- U = Manufactured in the USA (If there’s no “U”, the truck was manufactured outside the USA – for example, a Toyota forklift model 3FG15)
- T = Manufactured in Italy (8FBMT25)
- S = Short chassis (the “S” may appear before the “U” in this case, e.g. 8FGCSU20)
The last digits of a forklift model number indicate its lifting capacity, also called the “base” or “chassis” capacity. There may be some exceptions, but generally, the numbers denote base capacity in tons with one decimal place.
So the "25" in the 8FGCU25 model plate indicates that the forklift's base capacity is 2.5 tons or 5,000 lbs. If the number were 20, it would mean 2.0 tons or 4000 lbs. Tonnage is sometimes rounded because two numbers for tonnage are used. So, it's essential to your forklift's data plate for its specific capacity information.
Model Numbers for Toyota Heavy-Duty Forklifts
These model number formats apply to Toyota's heavy-duty (THD) forklift models, which have lifting capacities of 15,000 lbs and up.
Compared to the format of Toyota “core” forklift models, these are a little easier to interpret. Let's use the example THDC3600S-24 for reference.
In Toyota THD forklift models, THD designation comes first, accompanied by a letter that denotes the specific truck designation. There are 4 unique designators.
- THD = Internal combustion (IC) forklift with pneumatic tires
- THDC = Internal combustion (IC) forklift with cushion tires
- THDE = Electric forklift with cushion tires
- THDA = Cushion tire forklift with an adjustable wheelbase
The next part of a THD model number represents the forklift's lifting capacity in pounds. To know the exact figure, just multiply the number by 10 – or simply add a zero.
Thus, for our THDC3600S-24 example model, 3600 x 10 = 36,000 lbs. lifting capacity.
A Toyota heavy-duty forklift’s model number also denotes any special chassis characteristics. These can be represented by letters or numbers after the capacity number.
- S = Short chassis model
- B = Box car special counterweight
Load Center or Container Handler Type
The last part of the model number is the load center or the container handler type (if the machine is port equipment). This is represented by a dash (-) followed by two numbers, for example, THDC3600S-24.
- 24 = Base capacity is rated at a 24-inch load center.
- EXX = Empty container handler. The numbers in place of the XX tell you the maximum stacking capability.
- LXX = Loaded container handlers. The numbers in place of the XX indicate its max stacking height capability.
- RXX = Reach stacker. The numbers in place of the XX indicate the maximum lift capacity for the third row.
Understanding your forklift’s model number helps you differentiate one forklift from another. This is especially useful if you have a fleet of trucks.
Imagine you're explaining something about one of your trucks to your dealer, and then you say a statement like, "the big orange one with a propane tank." This could mean any one of the different trucks.
So, understanding each character's meaning in the model number allows you to identify your equipment with its name and not a generic description.
Toyota model numbers are a combination of numbers and letters, each having a meaning or denoting useful equipment details. These include:
- Model series
- Fuel type
- Tire type
- Lift capacity
For example, understanding each character in the Toyota forklift model 8FGCU25 means you know that it’s:
- An 8-series forklift (which is newer than 7-series)
- It’s a Forklift
- It’s fueled by either Gasoline, LPG, or both
- It has Cushion tires installed
- It was made in the USA
- It has a base lifting capacity of 2.5 tons (about 5,000 lbs.)
Generally, if two Toyota forklifts are the same type, then the series number on the model number will tell you which is older.
For example, a 7FGCU25 is the same type of forklift as an 8FGCU25 (e.g. both are 5,000 lb. capacity gas-powered, cushion-tire forklifts). And since model numbers are sequential, a higher number typically translates to a newer model. Therefore, we can say that the 7FGCU25 is older than the 8FGCU25 because 8 is after 7.
But this series-to-age conversion only applies to different forklift models. This is because age and series depend on when Toyota developed a new series for that particular forklift or equipment model.
For example, in the case of a 7-series 3-wheel electric forklift (7FBEU15) and an 8-series 5,000 lb. cushion forklift (8FGCU25), the 7-series could be newer than the 8-series. Why? Because these are two completely different types of forklifts, and each type of forklift can have a different series.
This is why it's essential to verify your Toyota forklift's age through your closest authorized Toyota forklift dealership.
For Toyota forklifts up to 17,500 lb. capacity, the capacity given in the model number is in kilograms (not pounds), and only the first two digits are given.
For example, in a model 8FGCU25 forklift, the "25" denotes 2,500 kg. This is equal to about 5,000 lbs.
To convert from kilograms to pounds, multiply the last two digits by 2.2.
You can also reference the chart below, which gives you the different conversion for kilograms-to-pounds:
How Do I Identify My Toyota Forklift?
The easiest way to identify your forklift is to check the model number. But you must first understand how to read the model number.
With the model number in hand and the information in this article, you can identify what type of Toyota forklift you have, its age, and more.
If you need help reading and understanding the model number, reach out to your closest authorized Toyota forklift dealership for help.
Where Is the Model Number on a Toyota Forklift?
Every Toyota forklift's model number is found on the data tag, also called the data plate.
Where Can I Find a Toyota Forklift Models List?
We've put together a massive list of over 1,200 different Toyota forklift models and their descriptions (including old Toyota forklift models) that you can reference for free. Click this link and you'll be taken to an Excel spreadsheet that you can download.
Do Toyota Forklifts Have VIN Numbers?
Toyota forklifts do not have VIN numbers. Instead, most Toyota forklifts have a 5-digit serial number which, in combination with the model number, provides a unique identifier for the equipment.
Where Is the Serial Number Stamped on a Toyota Forklift?
Sometimes, a Toyota forklift's serial number location can be found stamped on the frame of the forklift, between the forklift mast and the operator's comp
Generally, you'll see the Toyota model number followed by the serial number stamped in this area. Stamping the serial number is important so that the truck can still be identified if the data plate comes loose from the lift truck.
How Do I Find Out What Year My Forklift Is?
There are different ways to find out what year your forklift is.
Some forklift manufacturers include the year of manufacture on the data plate - - but not all manufacturers do.
If your data tag doesn’t have the year, then get the model and serial number and contact the closest authorized dealership to you.
If you're looking for the age of your Toyota forklift, we've put together a list of Toyota forklift models by year that you can download for free. Click this link and you'll be taken to an Excel spreadsheet. There, you’ll see a range of models and serial numbers with the corresponding year of manufacture.
Note: This list is not meant to be 100% accurate. Instead, it's only meant to give you a rough idea of your forklift's age. To confirm the age of your Toyota forklift, please contact your nearest dealership.
That's it: Your complete guide to Toyota forklift models.
Now, we'd like to get it back to you.
Can you read and interpret your Toyota forklift number?
What's the series of your forklift?
Or maybe you have more questions?
Please share with us in the comments section.