Originally Posted by Happy Wanderer
81 was the first _full_ production year but not the first year.
Originally Posted by GapRunr
Mine with serial number 2060 was built 11/1980 , which would make it an 81. According to RealOEM the R80 g/s was made in 6/1980, which I would assume were late year 1980 introduction, then manufactured again in 10, 11, and 12 of 1980 which would most likely be 1981 model year bikes.
year versus Model
The simple answer is that the 1981 R80G/S was an early production (built earlier in 1980 than perhaps normal) of the model year 1981
Ford began building the 2014 Explorers in late January... there are no real rules for model year.