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OEM vs. Aftermarket Car Parts

Auto mechanic inspecting car parts.

One of the hottest topics in the car industry, the OEM vs. aftermarket car parts debate strikes up a great deal of controversy. 

It makes sense…car parts can be expensive! Car owners need to make sure they are getting the very best quality if they are going to be spending that much money to fix a vehicle.

But what’s the difference between OEM and aftermarket parts, anyway?

What are OEM car parts?

Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) parts are those produced by the same company that built your vehicle. 

So, if your 2016 Volkswagen Tiguan needs a new engine or compressor, you can purchase OEM replacement parts that come directly from the Volkswagen manufacturing facility. And the replacement will be identical to the original part that came with your car. 

What are aftermarket car parts?

Meanwhile, aftermarket parts are developed by companies that compete against vehicle manufacturers like Volkswagen. These parts are built to be compatible with a wide range of car makes and models — which means, they’re not specifically tailored to fit any ONE vehicle.

Why OEM is more expensive than aftermarket

Typically, aftermarket parts come at a lower initial cost than OEM parts. Developed and tested under strict manufacturer standards, OEM parts are often created with the higher quality materials and are built to match the unique needs of individual vehicles.

Frequently produced with lower quality materials, aftermarket car parts are prone to higher degrees of wear and tear — which will ultimately negate any of the money saved initially. 

Like most things in life, higher quality means a higher price.

But, that’s still no excuse for a car dealership to charge you exorbitant amounts of money for replacement parts. Most new car dealerships will significantly mark up the price just to make a profit… because they know you’ll pay anything for top grade parts.

Now, more and more independent auto shops — like Performance Auto Specialists — provide OEM vehicle parts… just at reasonable, affordable prices. Plus, our team offers a 24-month or 24,000 mile warranty on all our OEM parts.

Are OEM parts worth the cost?

We know the higher prices of OEM parts can be daunting. But hear us out — here are the top 5 reasons we ONLY offer our customers OEM parts:

  • Higher QualityCrash-tested and developed with the optimal materials, OEM parts have a longer lifespan, setting our customers up for success and ultimately saving them money on repairs and replacements down the road.
  • Peak PerformanceCreated precisely FOR our customers’ specific vehicles, OEM parts ensure that their cars perform the very best on the road. Plus, the custom-tailored parts give our customers peace of mind, knowing that any part replacement is an exact replica of the original.
  • Clear SelectionUnless a customer is exceptionally familiar with the car parts market, they just won’t have the understanding necessary to tell whether a particular aftermarket part is reliable. With the large array of car part options, it can be confusing — even overwhelming — for vehicle owners to determine which type of part they need. With OEM parts, it’s simple; customers don’t really have to make a choice.
  • Warranty AssuranceNot only do we offer our customers a fantastic 2-year warranty on all our OEM replacement parts, but we also keep in mind their existing dealership warranties. Many dealer warranties will be voided if a car owner uses aftermarket part replacements.
  • Greater Car ValueAftermarket parts often decrease a car’s resale value. With original, manufacturer-approved parts, our customers can maintain the value of their vehicle if they ever decide to sell.

NOTE: In many cases, auto insurance agencies prefer (or even require) cheaper aftermarket parts. However, this does NOT mean you HAVE to oblige. If you prefer OEM parts, simply offer to pay the difference in price. 

Performance Auto Specialists | Wilmington NC

When it comes to replacing a broken or worn down car part, it’s crucial to choose wisely. With OEM parts, you will not only save money in the long run, but you’ll also have peace of mind knowing that your vehicle is equipped with only the highest quality parts on the market. 

We realize that auto repairs are often inevitable. But at Performance Auto Specialists, we strive to give you the education and affordable prices you need to make smart car service decisions. 

When you reach out to us with repair or replacement needs, we’ll answer all of your questions, explain the problem and the solution, and provide a detailed estimate before we perform any work.

Need a replacement car part? Schedule an appointment!

Have unanswered questions about OEM parts? Give us a call at (910) 343-1650.

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