What’s the difference between OEM and Aftermarket BMW Parts?

Automobile aficionados have long debated on what type of parts to install on BMW cars. Parts range in quality and price, and it depends on the preferences of the driver and what they want to get out of their BMW. Of course, BMW recommends only installing genuine BMW parts. But does the average consumer really need to pay premium prices when there are other (cheaper) brands out there that can accomplish the same task? In this article North Bay Bavarian breaks down the differences between genuine BMW parts, OEM parts and aftermarket parts.

What’s the Difference Between Genuine BMW Parts, OEM Parts and Aftermarket Parts?

Many drivers seek cost-effective parts for their BMWs, but given that BMW is a performance brand, how much can owners really skimp on price without compromising quality?  Whatever your preference, here are your options when installing parts on your ultimate driving machine:

Genuine BMW Parts: This label is given to parts purchased from a BMW dealer. As you probably guessed, this is the priciest option when seeking a replacement part for your car. Cost aside, genuine BMW parts can make your BMW just as good as when it rolled off the assembly line and are backed by BMW’s warranty. The bottom line is that genuine BMW parts offer peace of mind and consistency, but these factors are reflected in their high prices.

OEM Parts: For starters, OEM stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer. Though not technically designated “genuine BMW parts”, the quality of OEM parts can be as good or even better. Essentially, BMW puts out precise specifications for parts, and manufacturing companies bid to produce these parts. For example, your BMW’s spark plugs may not be made by BMW, but NGK. There are many renowned OEM manufacturers making dependable parts that go for less than genuine BMW items. In summary, OEM parts are great because they offer similar quality to genuine parts while maintaining lower prices. They are basically genuine BMW parts without the BMW logo.

Aftermarket Parts: This distinction is given to parts manufactured outside of an OEM production contract. Therefore, the standards and testing procedures for these parts are less rigorous. Aftermarket parts cover every category from air filters to headlights, and the quality varies from total junk to totally awesome. It takes a trained eye to spot the junk, but once you obtain this eye, aftermarket parts are a great option when your BMW needs fixing.

North Bay Bavarian can consult with you about the best options for your car. It really comes down to your personal preference when considering Genuine BMW, OEM or aftermarket parts. Our BMW mechanic team has been serving Santa Rosa BMW cars since 1987. Whether you’re just looking to get back on the road after a part fails, or you want to make your BMW race ready, we have the technical know-how and skills to make it happen.

Call North Bay Bavarian graphic