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So I bought a nice 2003 Passat GLS. Only problem was the aftermarket deck, so I removed it and replaced with one from a wreckers. I have the radio serial # VWZ5Z7C1227044 and the VIN # WVWPD23B94P040280. I talked to the local dealer but they want $80.00 which unfortunately is out of budget. Any ideas to get the code for a decent price? Thanks
 

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This vehicle is not a B6, it's a B5.5.
Go back to the salvage yard and find the car you took the radio from, look for the radio code in the trunk.
Or...
Shell out $80.
Those are your only 2 options as far as I know.
 

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There may be additional ways...

I found "some guy on the internet" who gives fairly good details how to read the code (and change it, if you want!) within an 8-pin EEPROM chip inside the radio using an inexpensive EEPROM reader/programmer.

But -- to follow his instructions to find the chip you must have the same manufacturer of radio that he had. So pay attention to that, I don't think he mentions it clearly if at all.

I was very excited by this idea, purchased the reader/programmer, but it turns out I have a different manufacturer of radio and I haven't yet poked around at the 8-pin chips inside it to see if one of them might be the one with the code.

Also, I don't need to do this so much now because other things happened:
- most exciting, I found for the first time, a Radio Code in the car at the Pick-n-Pull junkyard which I had grabbed my extra/parts radio out of! It was not in the trunk, but somewhere inside the Manual/Paperwork folder, still in the radio book. First Time Ever finding a code like that for me! I think I paid 30 USD for the radio, all knobs, good faceplate, and code.
- also so far I have just swapped faceplates (damaged display) with the radio in my new 2005, and I don't need to find the code for that radio because I think it's somehow linked to the VIN and won't ask for the code as long as it's in its original car.

I'll play around inside the extra radio someday, and see if the same chip is in there. So there may be options. This is an annoying feature of VW dealers and radios, even though it may have prevented untold numbers of thefts over the years.
 
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