I'm trying to write an app that gives basic anonymous car data (make/model/year) from a picture.
I assumed the best way to do that would be to take a license plate number, look up the VIN from the plate, and gather other data through a VIN lookup. However, there doesn't seem to be a database for the US out there that gives you just the VIN from the license plate, and all other license plate lookup services are either scams or for law enforcement / security services due to all of the private information related to car registration numbers.
Is there a way (preferably an API) to lookup just the VIN from an American car plate? I'm not interested in any of the owner data so privacy shouldn't be an issue. I'm just trying to avoid a user from entering in a 17 digit number that they won't know offhand.