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    Thread: What exactly is "OEM"?

    1. Member Oly_Golf's Avatar
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      12-09-2009 10:26 PM #1
      Hope you all are well in this wintery weather and economy.
      A bit new to this and might be naive, but I thought it meant the part was VW/Audi stamped made mostly in Germany, or a bit in Mexico or Belgium?
      So does OEM stand for: 'VARIOUS' Original Equipment Manufacturer(s), or 'AUTHENTIC' Original Equipment Manufacturer?
      I know that various companies such as Bosch produce quite a few of the parts for our cars and then VW has them stamp it with their symbol. But I also took that stamp to mean it is up to VW's quality and fit standards. (I've had very few VW parts fail prematurely or be defective, well except the ignition coils and MAFs, and even most of those have recalls or warranty extensions)
      There are deals on the web and I know you get what you pay for, but I've noticed even from reputable enthusiasts sites that they'll list it as OEM (for a great price) and what I'll get is another "brand" that "references" the VW part number.
      Just want to say first: I LOVE TDIPARTS and MJM AUTOHAUS!
      For example:
      MJM - Listed OEM VDO Fuel Pump $180 works fine but has no markings on it at all while the Auto Zone $325 fuel pump clearly states Made in Germany VDO. Is the MJM one a VDO but the name scratched off to avoid a possible direct manufacturers warranty?
      TDIPARTS - Actually, never listed as OEM so much as just "stock dogbone mount" for $29 (way less than half of dealership price). Installed in minutes, perfect fit and feels good. Just curious how long it will last.
      MJM - 21mm Front Sway Bar Bushings listed as OEM, stamped says FEBI. $10 w/free shipping. Dealership listed as $25 for both.
      MJM - Rear Axle Bushings listed as OEM, product arrived packaged as Meyle. 1STVWPARTS listed as only $10 more should be VW/Audi original part.
      Just a side thought: Should I buy from ECS and 1STVWPARTS only in the future? I like ECS because they actually list whether or not it is a TRUE VW/Audi stamped part and 1STVWPARTS is actually the Auburn, WA VW/Audi dealerships online dept that can only ships authentic VW parts.

      I know, if it cost 50% less and works just fine, don't go rocking the boat, but I do have to be able to look my customers in the eyes and tell them it is quality OEM part too.
      This isn't a rant thread, just curious about your thoughts/experiences. Thank you in advance for assistance and apologies for the long diatribe.

    2. 12-09-2009 11:09 PM #2
      I run a "salvage yard" where i sell new and used auto parts everyday. My new aftermarket parts are "OEM" bc they are the same as OEM, such as the fit, style, and 97% the quality as dealer products. Most of the time when you see OEM on a website such as tmtuning and ecstuning..etc., means that the parts fit as OEM but would be considered an OEM replacement part. The real OEM would come from the dealer now where else. I noticed you said something ab Bosch products, which you will find Bosch products on just ab any car from foriegn to domestic. Honestly theres not really a difference in non-dealer purchased items, and I can back this up bc my dad's business has been open scence 1986 and has never had any problems with our new parts. So it's just at your discretion.

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      12-09-2009 11:13 PM #3
      original equipment manufacturer
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    4. Member Kiddie Rimzo's Avatar
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      12-09-2009 11:14 PM #4
      Quote, originally posted by phill0046 »
      original equipment manufacturer

      Quote, originally posted by Oly_Golf »
      So does OEM stand for: 'VARIOUS' Original Equipment Manufacturer(s), or 'AUTHENTIC' Original Equipment Manufacturer?

      i think the original post established that
      I'm not a star. Somebody lied.

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      12-09-2009 11:24 PM #5
      OEM means its **** the dealership will rape you for [IMG]http://**********************/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG]
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    6. Member dirtylowslo's Avatar
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      12-09-2009 11:25 PM #6
      OEM doesn't have to come from VW just the company that makes the part for VW, hence Original Equipment Manufacturer
      FOR THE LOVE OF THE VW GODS USE THE SEARCH AND CHECK THE FAQ/DIY STICKY

      Originally Posted by dubnakd "i<3 the tex its like she got a facelift but shes still that crazy ex girlfriend from college"
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      12-09-2009 11:40 PM #7
      Quote, originally posted by VeeeeeDub &raquo;
      I run a "salvage yard" where i sell new and used auto parts everyday. My new aftermarket parts are "OEM" bc they are the same as OEM, such as the fit, style, and 97% the quality as dealer products. Most of the time when you see OEM on a website such as tmtuning and ecstuning..etc., means that the parts fit as OEM but would be considered an OEM replacement part. The real OEM would come from the dealer now where else. I noticed you said something ab Bosch products, which you will find Bosch products on just ab any car from foriegn to domestic. Honestly theres not really a difference in non-dealer purchased items, and I can back this up bc my dad's business has been open scence 1986 and has never had any problems with our new parts. So it's just at your discretion.

      This post is full of wrong info.... I'm def. not going to your salvage yard.
      Just because something fits as intended by VW does not mean it is OEM. Just because soemthing comes from the dealer does not mean it is of higher quality than an OEM part sold on a website.
      This is how OEM works...
      As stated above it stands of Original Equipment Manufacturer
      This means that VW does not make all their own parts, infact lots of companies make parts for them. As you mentioned the parts that go to vw are stamped with the logo. You can find these parts through your dealership.
      For instance Bosch makes many parts for the VW, so does Hella when it comes to lighting.
      You have Hella taillights on your car. Any replacement taillight for you car that is made by Hella is considered OEM, as Hella is the "Original Equipment Maufacturer" of said part. Now I have Hella smoked tailights on my jetta, they are OEM but not Stock Original Equipment. That right there is your difference. To have OEM taillights they need to be made by Hella. Everything else is just aftermarket. My smoked Hella taillights however are also aftermarket because they were not sold with the car in any trim level. So here's the rundown for you.
      If the part is OEM it is made by the same company that made the stock part. Whether it has a vw part number and stamp or not if it is made by that company it is OEM.
      Stock came on the car or some trim level of the car.
      Aftermarket means it was not offered from vw with that part.
      Both Stock and Aftermarket parts can be labeled OEM. Stock implies OEM but Aftermarket does not. OEM just implies it was made by the same company that made the stock part.
      Hope this helps. [IMG]http://**********************/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG]


      Modified by ninjapants at 8:41 PM 12-9-2009
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    8. Member Oly_Golf's Avatar
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      12-10-2009 01:04 PM #8
      Dirty, thanks for the quick info and also Ninja for explaining the stock/aftermarket vs OEM scenario. Damn good post and stuff like that should be put in the FAQs for newbs like me....
      VeeeeDub: Sounds like you run a nice place and 97% quality for half the price is ok for nearly most applications but think with water pumps, timing belts and critical suspension parts I do want 100%, but then I guess I also want a better than dealership price... so yeah, can't have both all the time.
      Though, curious, do you mean you sell items as OEM, that are not an original source manufacturer for VW/Audi? Not accusing at all, and what you said was really helpful.
      It sounds like there are different interpretations of what OEM is and I'm thinking even reputable web sellers mark OEM, when they are actually not sourced original manufacturer parts? (meaning, they were not licensed, and didn't receive the specs for their parts from VW)


      Modified by Oly_Golf at 6:57 PM 12-10-2009

    9. Banner Advertiser ECS Tuning's Avatar
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      12-10-2009 01:55 PM #9
      There can be quite a bit of confusion in the industry on what "OEM" actually is, but we do the following.
      OEM parts on our website come directly from VW (stateside or other), they have the OEM VW part number and logo stamped into the part. We also call these "Genuine VW/ Audi Parts".
      OE parts can come from a variety of different manufactures, another term is OES (Original Equipment Supplier). Some OE or OES parts may very well be the same exact part you would get buying OEM (without the VW / Audi logo) and others are not.
      A simple example, Mk4 1.8T Air Filters:
      http://www.ecstuning.com/Volks...reply
      Versions are available from Meyle, Mann, Mahle and OEM. Mann and Mahle are all OES suppliers to VW, this means that they all provide parts directly to VW, but that doesn't necessarily mean they all supply this part specifically to VW. In the example of the air filter above, the OEM filter directly from VW is more than likely a Mann filter. What is the difference between buying the OEM vs. the Mann? Price. In general, OEM parts are going to be more expensive, however that is not always the case.
      Timing belt kits are another great example:
      http://www.ecstuning.com/Volks...reply
      We offer both Genuine OEM Timing Belt Kits and OE Timing Belt Kits, there is a very dramatic price difference between the two, however we do have customers that prefer to use only OEM components, thus we offer a few different options.
      On our website, unless the part is purchased directly from VW, we do not consider it an OEM part and it will be noted appropriately. We also do not substitute parts for OEM without asking. If an OEM part is not available, but an OE equivalent is available, we will contact the to customer to see if they would like to wait, or use the OE equivalent.
      [IMG]http://**********************/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG] [IMG]http://**********************/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG]

      Last edited by ECS Tuning; 01-18-2011 at 08:32 AM.

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    10. 12-10-2009 04:54 PM #10
      by the way im not wrong. there are different variations of OEM so maybe you should check yourself before you say dumb ****.

    11. Banned autobahmer's Avatar
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      12-10-2009 05:34 PM #11
      Quote, originally posted by VeeeeeDub &raquo;
      by the way im not wrong. there are different variations of OEM so maybe you should check yourself before you say dumb ****.

      stop.
      oem stands for original equipment manufactured (manufacturer, or whatever you want to use) and the meaning behind the word oem is that the parts were made for and commissioned by vw & audi or any other automaker. legit oem parts have part numbers, the famous brand logos, and etc..............you could call some aftermarket parts oem if the third party company who made the parts for the said car company legally sold parts made with the original molds and material that the parts were made out of or sold the molds to someone else hwo would do the same. OEM could be considered a brand name as it usually is the highest quality of craftsmanship of the lowest bidder, ensures individual parts longevity reliability, and pretty much sets the standard for a decent part.
      it's surprising how many people don't even know what OEM is
      OEM MEANS ONE THING


      Modified by autobahmer at 4:42 PM 12-10-2009

    12. Member Oly_Golf's Avatar
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      12-10-2009 10:50 PM #12
      Quote, originally posted by jon@ecstuning.com &raquo;
      There can be quite a bit of confusion in the industry on what "OEM" actually is, but we do the following.
      OEM parts on our website come directly from VW (stateside or other), they have the OEM VW part number and logo stamped into the part. We also call these "Genuine VW/ Audi Parts".
      OE parts can come from a variety of different manufactures, another term is OES (Original Equipment Supplier). Some OE or OES parts may very well be the same exact part you would get buying OEM (without the VW / Audi logo) and others are not.
      A simple example, Mk4 1.8T Air Filters:
      http://www.ecstuning.com/Volks...reply
      Versions are available from Meyle, Mann, Mahle and OEM. Meyle, Mann and Mahle are all OES suppliers to VW, this means that they all provide parts directly to VW, but that doesn't necessarily mean they all supply this part specifically to VW. In the example of the air filter above, the OEM filter directly from VW is more than likely a Mann filter. What is the difference between buying the OEM vs. the Mann? Price. In general, OEM parts are going to be more expensive, however that is not always the case.
      Timing belt kits are another great example:
      http://www.ecstuning.com/Volks...reply
      We offer both Genuine OEM Timing Belt Kits and OE Timing Belt Kits, there is a very dramatic price difference between the two, however we do have customers that prefer to use only OEM components, thus we offer a few different options.
      On our website, unless the part is purchased directly from VW, we do not consider it an OEM part and it will be noted appropriately. We also do not substitute parts for OEM without asking. If an OEM part is not available, but an OE equivalent is available, we will contact the to customer to see if they would like to wait, or use the OE equivalent.
      [IMG]http://**********************/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG] [IMG]http://**********************/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG]

      Modified by jon@ecstuning.com at 1:58 PM 12-10-2009

      Wow! Thanks Jon! ESCTUNING just made a customer for life! Thank you for your post. The one item I have bought thus far from ESC was the MK4 Weather Protection Package - Stage 1.
      http://www.ecstuning.com/Volks...57589/
      Really did not expect all 3 pieces would be OEM Stock VW parts. Even every bolt was individually packaged factory fresh from VW. Dang, flippin cool!
      Again, Ninja, want to thank you for your wisdom. Also, autobahmer thanks for the rebuttal. VeeeeeDub, I think you are starting to scare me a bit, now from what they both said.
      Truly, a moderator should add this to the FAQs, for all of Vortex!
      Not so worried now, think I'll go take a nap.

    13. Banner Advertiser ECS Tuning's Avatar
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      12-11-2009 04:47 PM #13
      Quote, originally posted by Oly_Golf &raquo;
      Wow! Thanks Jon! ESCTUNING just made a customer for life! Thank you for your post.

      Sure thing, more than happy to help out!
      OEM can mean a variety of different things to different people, but we feel OEM means that it comes directly from VW.
      We have millions of parts on our website and each will be noted with supplier and manufacture information when possible. There are many cases when the exact same OEM part can be had through an OE / OES manufacture and it is slightly less expensive. As always, I am more than happy to answer any questions, so don't hesitate to shoot over a PM or email.

      http://www.ecstuning.com
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    14. 12-13-2009 01:18 AM #14

      oem means from the "car company"... for those that dont understand Original Equipment Manufacturer, the car company doesnt always make its own parts. so they have other companies make them for them. to the car companies specs. they can however sell the same parts with their own logo on them but they are called OE,
      hella lights are not on every vw or audi. and the hella tinted/smoked taillights are not OEM or OE , they are made for your particular car by HELLA , thats it.. because they do not light up the same way. and are no where NEAR vw specs. they are AFTERMARKET. its simple as that . theres nothing wrong with it. i have lots of aftermarket stuff on my car. but you cant call something its not.
      ecs tuning have it right, and are a great company to deal with. and most car people and car shops ive dealt with in my life think the same way. OEM is what is only sold at a dealership. yes, because they are basically the "car company" and cant sell OE or aftermarket. but you can get OEM stuff at other car parts shops and other ways and better prices than a dealership is going to charge you.
      just because its made for your car, doesnt mean its OEM
      your not going into your bmw, vw or audi dealership and getting aftermarket or OE oil and air filters put in.. .
      but i DO NOT agree with VeeeeeDub . there is a difference in everything. i dont agree with how you run a business . you are the type of crook that steals from people that dont know anything about the car they are driving and tells them its OEM to screw with there heads when really its not stamped with approved VW, or BMW logo so you can charge more.. dont tell people its somthing when its not. and yes there is a difference just look on ecs tuning website. look at the price differences between OEM vw/audi stuff apose to the mahl and mann stuff. and im not even in the business and i know this . you have been in business since 1986.. you should know this.
      97% is not a 100. you should check yourself before u make stupid posts.
      FAIL

    15. Member Oly_Golf's Avatar
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      12-16-2009 12:34 AM #15
      I have a car that I love getting close to a decade.
      I want OEM VW STOCK. Now I know what to look for.
      I really appreciate you folks taking the time out to advise and respond.
      Best wishes this holiday season.
      [IMG]http://**********************/smile/emgift.gif[/IMG] [IMG]http://**********************/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG]
      Cheers,
      Scott


      Modified by Oly_Golf at 10:16 PM 12-15-2009

    16. Member JettaGetUpandGo's Avatar
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      12-16-2009 01:42 AM #16
      I have always followed the ECS definition of OEM as well.
      Now in regards to parts, the OE substitutes are almost always equally as good as the OEM parts, only without the VW part number and without the extra cost. Why pay more for the same thing?
      Perfect example: ECS sells the Hella R/S/R/S tail lights for $102 and the OEM GLI R/S/R/S tail lights for $173. They're both identical parts most likely made on the same assembly line, but the Hella lights don't have an OEM VW part number on them. Is the part number worth $71?
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    17. Member Oly_Golf's Avatar
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      12-16-2009 05:10 PM #17
      I agree with you on the lights, as long as you buy Hella or Valeo, it's the same quality as VW Stock.
      Though, for timing belts, water pumps and suspension, I personally would only buy OEM (doesn't need to be stock VW though), not OE, even if it were 50% less.
      Also I hate it when poly bushings are pushed as "stock replacement" and daily drivers install them only to find they squeak or rattle worse than before. Because they weren't meant as stock replacement, but as aftermarket performance replacement. If poly was so "amazing" for stock setups, VW would use them.
      Lastly, while this is a rare example of OEM versus STOCK OEM VW/AUDI parts, I just think it might make you pause next time you buy a part.
      Rear Axle Bushings: OEM Meyle $45 has only 25% rubber. Udated STOCK VW PART $65 has 75% rubber. Which would you buy?
      Here's the info towards the bottom:
      http://forums.vwvortex.com/zer...age=5


    18. Member dococ's Avatar
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      12-16-2009 05:52 PM #18
      You can get OEM VW parts from a VW dealer out your way (Oregon) for substantially cheaper prices than almost any other VW dealer:
      http://1stvwparts.com
      Also, since finding the correct VW PN is sometimes difficult unless you're holding it in your hand, I recommend using
      https://www.partslink24.com/partslink24/startup.do
      It's free and gives you ALL the parts diagrams for ALL VWs. You have to record a credit number when you sign up, but they don't actually charge anything against it.
      BTW, I just did my timing belt, tensioner, idler, coolant, engine mount bolts with VW OEM parts and total cost was less than $300.


      Modified by dococ at 5:54 PM 12-16-2009

    19. Member Oly_Golf's Avatar
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      12-16-2009 07:35 PM #19
      Acutally, that's where I got the Superseded Parts for the Rear Axle Bushings from 1stvwparts. They are actually in Auburn, WA, not Oregon though.
      Thanks for the 24 link. Looks promising.

    20. Senior Member 87vr6's Avatar
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      12-16-2009 07:57 PM #20
      By going with some of these horrible definitions of "OEM", one might be able to call Dubtecnic's stuff OEM, since they took factory parts, made molds with them, and reproduced parts.

      Def not OEM as documented on here plenty of times
      OEM=Stuff made and guaranteed by the manufacturer to fit and function as the O(em)riginal part.
      A lot of people here are confusing OEM and OEM equivalent.
      OEM equivalent is like the euro bumpers perf-cafe sells. They're not OEM, but close.
      Oh well, people are going to think what they want to think.
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    21. Member dococ's Avatar
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      12-16-2009 08:51 PM #21
      I knew they were in Auburn - thought it was Oregon - thanks

    22. Member JettaGetUpandGo's Avatar
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      12-16-2009 09:12 PM #22
      Quote, originally posted by 87vr6 &raquo;
      By going with some of these horrible definitions of "OEM", one might be able to call Dubtecnic's stuff OEM, since they took factory parts, made molds with them, and reproduced parts.

      Def not OEM as documented on here plenty of times
      OEM=Stuff made and guaranteed by the manufacturer to fit and function as the O(em)riginal part.
      A lot of people here are confusing OEM and OEM equivalent.
      OEM equivalent is like the euro bumpers perf-cafe sells. They're not OEM, but close.
      Oh well, people are going to think what they want to think.

      There's a huge difference between Dubtecnic which is a cheap replica of the Votex, and some of the other suppliers that actually product parts for Volkswagen, but also sell almost identical equivalents without the part number, such as Hella, Mann, Mahle, Bosch, Sachs, Meyle, Ate, etc.
      I wouldn't call any of those parts made by OEM suppliers OEM, but they're all OE equivalents unlike the replicas.
      EDIT: I really like how ECS distinguishes OEM and OE Equivalent on their site unlike some other sites that are a crapshoot.


      Modified by JettaGetUpandGo at 8:15 PM 12-16-2009
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    23. 12-16-2009 09:28 PM #23
      Quote, originally posted by phill0046 &raquo;
      original equipment manufacturer

      that

    24. 12-16-2009 10:09 PM #24
      wow, it really is shocking what people consider OEM . mahl and mann and meyle , are not OEM ... they are equivalent. they could be a supplier, but they are not OEM . .plain and simple oem is stamped VW OR BMW, if the part goes wrong you go back to VW or BMW , if its made by hella or mahl. you contact hella or mahl . if your oem headlights that are made my hella , and something goes wrong . you contact VW, not HELLA.
      im not saying buying hella or mahl or mann stuff is bad , infact its what i buy.. its cheaper and works just as good... just dont confuse to two.

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      12-16-2009 10:36 PM #25
      Quote, originally posted by dococ &raquo;
      I knew they were in Auburn - thought it was Oregon - thanks

      No problemo, I always get NY mixed up with NJ too.

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