Covering Your Tub: The Real Difference Between Genuine and Aftermarket Products
When it comes to purchasing a new ute, there are many options available to maximise the useability of the all-important tub. It is, after all, your vehicle’s most important asset. In the past, a judgement between genuine and aftermarket products has often been made based on brand name rather than the actual product. Many people in Australia opt for the genuine or official accessory because it seems like a safer and more secure bet, even when that isn’t necessarily the case. This has been a common trend over the last decade. Fortunately for the automotive industry, the wheels are turning, and this outlook is beginning to change.
What does ‘aftermarket’ mean?
An aftermarket part is simply a product that is manufactured to suit a vehicle but isn’t part of the genuine or official accessory range. Often, aftermarket products are manufactured by the same companies that produce parts for the vehicle in the first place.
Why does aftermarket have a lower quality perception?
Mostly because there is such a vast array of aftermarket parts. Anything that’s not genuine falls into this category. Similarly, an influx of cheaper, poorly made products give the term aftermarket a bad rap.
Are there benefits to aftermarket?
Yes! Huge benefits, if you do your research.
Aftermarket parts can often be superior to genuine parts as they are made after the car has been released and are adapted to the needs of the user. They are often more competitive on price and have great delivery times. An example of this is the HSP Roll R cover. Unlike all genuine competitors, the HSP Roll Cover is the only roll top that is electric and both ladder and rhino rack compatible. Better yet, it’s cheaper in price and the only product to be manufactured in Australia to ISO9001 standards. Another great comparison is the ARB Accent Canopy, which boasts central locking on all 3 doors, a built in vent and spoiler as well as great racking options.
What to look out for when researching aftermarket products?
The best things to research are company accreditations and to make sure that ISO9001 standards are being met. This is the global requirement for quality manufacturing. Predominantly genuine companies like EGR and Aeroklas tick this box, along with many aftermarket companies such as ARB, Flexiglass and HSP. Buying Australian made products are often advantageous as they are designed for our environments and aftersales is to Australian expectations.
Are genuine products made by the vehicle manufacturer?
In almost all cases, genuine products are co-designed or simply rebranded from existing part manufacturers. Most genuine parts in Australia are made by EGR, who have both genuine and aftermarket offerings in their range.
Why is there such thing as genuine products?
Genuine products exist in the marketplace for two main reasons:
What makes a product ‘genuine’?
A genuine product is made when a manufacturer identifies the need to accessorise their vehicle. They will create a business case and outline the requirements that the product must meet. Often, companies will source these through vehicle part manufacturers.
Is one better than the other?
Not necessarily. Genuine parts are always a fantastic option and there is no doubt about the quality that they provide, but they do have limitations. For instance, they may lack compatibility with other products and can also come with a hefty price tag. Look no further than the Mazda Bt50 Genuine 3-piece hard lid which retails at $3,009 and a HSP 3-piece Premium Hard Lid which retails at $2099. Both units are ISO 9001 compliant, suit sport bars and are made in Australia.
The final verdict
When looking for your new product, its best to do your own research and decide what purchase will best meet your needs, budget and visual style. While genuine parts are great, if you find a quality aftermarket supplier, the fact remains that spending more doesn’t necessarily guarantee that you’ll get the best outcome. To chat with qualified professionals about your ute lid, get in touch with HSP today.