Booked a rental car: Which car do I get?

Interesting for inexperienced rental car drivers: You have booked a certain vehicle class, but do not know exactly which vehicle you will get. With all major car rental companies, you only book one vehicle category and not a specific car. So you never know exactly whether the vehicle request will be fulfilled. Frequently, in a positive way, so-called “upgrades” occur with car rental companies: In the booked class, eg in the “Golf” class, there is no longer a vehicle available. Then you get a vehicle from the next higher category (here eg Audi A3) for the price of the booked category. Upgrades from the Golf to the 7 Series BMW are also possible.

So that you can assess which classes are worth booking, I have put together a selection of a few categories and vehicles in which I have rented a large number of vehicles in recent years. The classes are designated by all major rental companies with so-called “snipcodes”, a four-digit combination of letters. “CPMR”, the class in which Sixt, for example, has the Audi A3 or 1-series BMW, means: C = Compact, P = premium engine, M = manual shift, R = with air conditioning
For the rest, we always recommend a comparison of all providers instead of booking directly with a landlord.

compact class

  • CLMR: (VW Golf) Preserved vehicles: Often VW Golf Diesel (1.6 TDI and 2.0 TDI) with navigation system, often Audi A3 (1.6 TDI and 2.0 TDI) or BMW 1 Series. If things go badly, you can also get a Ford Focus petrol (1.6).
  • CPMR: (Audi A3 / BMW 1 Series) Vehicles received: Almost always Audi A3 (1.6 TDI and 2.0 TDI) or 1-series BMW as diesel. A3s almost always have sat nav and good equipment on board. If things are going badly, you can also get a 116i from BMW, but more often a 116d, 118d or even 120d. 1-series BMWs are almost always four-door, A3s often only two-door.

middle and upper class

  • ILMR (VW Passat) Vehicles received: VW Passat 2.0 TDI, Ford Focus petrol, Ford Mondeo diesel
  • FDMR(BMW 3 Series Sedan) Preserved vehicles: Audi A4 station wagon 2.0 TDI with navigation system, Mercedes Benz E220CDI automatic (actually LDAR!), Audi A6 3.0 TDI automatic (actually LDAR!)

Which rental car category did you book?

Just comment the rental company and category code below and we’ll add it to our list of likely vehicles!

This list is constantly expanding!


Great upgrade: Golf class booked, CPMR class received (Audi A3 2.0 TDI with black optics package)


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