OEM vs Aftermarket: A Simple Comparison

New Century BMW Certified Collision Center 

Chances are, you want to keep your BMW’s condition as genuine as possible. To do this, knowledge is the most valuable asset you can have when it comes to taking care of your vehicle. Ignorance can be bliss, but if you had the choice between a remedy or a toxin, which would you choose? Oftentimes, we don’t fully understand the difference between the types of parts offered by service repair centers. Here at New Century BMW Collision Center in Alhambra, we’re happy to break it down for you in an effort to help you with your decision down the road.

OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer)

OEM parts are made by the vehicle’s manufacturer and match the parts that came with your vehicle fresh from the factory.


Aftermarket parts are made by manufacturers that do not supply to the specific car manufacturer in any shape or form. In general, there are 2 kinds of aftermarket products.

The first kind of aftermarket part is a more affordable option. This part is considerably cheaper than the OEM part, while still providing relatively similar levels of quality. In some cases, the quality may be inferior to the OEM choice, so it’s important to do your research. If you’re looking to replace a part that regularly needs replacing, such as an air filter, the off-brand part can save you big bucks in the long run.

The second kind of aftermarket part is an updated version of the original part. With automotive research paving the pathway towards new technologies, it may not be in your best interest to purchase the same part from the year your car was purchased. With updated aftermarket parts, you have the opportunity to replace faulty parts with a more advanced option.

OEM Pros

All New Century BMW Collision Center installed OEM parts are backed by a 2-year warranty. All properly installed original BMW parts come with a 2-year warranty, and all work performed by us is guaranteed for as long as you own or lease your vehicle.

Stress-free selection process. Because OEM parts match the parts that your vehicle came with, there’s no need to compare different types of parts. Your car needs one part, and New Century BMW Collision Center has that part.

Quality you can rely on. Rest easy knowing your parts are coming directly from the manufacturer and have passed stringent tests prior to installation.

OEM Cons

More expensive than aftermarket parts. Dealerships charge premium prices on OEM parts because they control the distribution of OEM parts.

Usually only offered from the dealership. To get an OEM part, you must go directly to a dealership or certified service center which may cause inconvenience.

Few configurations of parts. There’s typically only one manufacturer that develops the original factory part, so quantities may be limited.

Aftermarket Pros

Cheaper than OEM parts. Aftermarket parts are more affordable because multiple manufacturers make similar products that can be purchased anywhere.

Many established brands offer upgraded aftermarket parts. Some aftermarket companies find faults in original OEM parts only to find ways to improve them.

Wide selection and availability. Chances are, your local service center carries an aftermarket version of the part you’re in need of.

Aftermarket Cons

Unpredictable quality. There are high-quality and low-quality aftermarket parts. Unfortunately, there aren’t many ways to distinguish between the two until you discover an issue first-hand.

Less likely to be accompanied by a warranty. Warranties on aftermarket parts are at the sole discretion of the manufacturer and the service center. If you plan on purchasing an aftermarket part from an unauthorized service center, be sure to ask them whether they offer a warranty on both the part and the labor.

Overwhelming selection to choose from. Plenty of manufacturers compete against one-another to develop alternative products. Extensive research is recommended before choosing an aftermarket part.

When it comes to collision repairs, you want to make sure you get OEM parts that fit properly and have the same safety standards as the original. Aftermarket body panels may not fit properly and/or have the proper crumple zones to keep you safe in the case of a crash. For all other replacement parts, we strongly suggest that you do your research to ensure that you buy your aftermarket parts from a trusted and high-quality source. Knowledge is power, and New Century BMW Collision Center is here to help you make informed decisions. Use it to your BMW’s advantage and schedule your service today!

NCBMW Collision
3001 W. Main St.
Alhambra, CA 91801

Schedule Appointment:
(626) 282-2233

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