AFTERMARKET, GENUINE, OEM, PATTERN PARTS - WHAT'S THE DIFFERENCE?
MOTORCYCLE PART TERMINOLOGY EXPLAINED
Any part you buy after you've purchased your motorcycle is called an aftermarket part - be it genuine, OEM or pattern; a replacement part or a custom part.
Many think aftermarket only applies to parts made by a different company to the one which made the original. This is wrong. It doesn't matter who makes them - they're all aftermarket if you've bought them after you've bought your bike.
Genuine parts are made by the same company who made the original parts on your bike. They're sold to you by the manufacturer of your bike, say Honda, and come in a branded bag or box.
OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) parts
OEM parts are also made by the same company who made the originals, but they're sold to you by that company or a re-seller. As they're not sold to you by your bike manufacturer, they can't be called 'genuine'.
Are OEM and genuine parts the same?
Essentially, yes. They're the same part, both made by the company that made the bike's original equipment. The only difference is where you buy them. Genuine, from your motorcycle manufacturer. OEM, from the equipment manufacturer or a re-seller.
This covers anything not made by the company which made the original parts for your bike. It can be an upgrade of the original equipment or a basic copy - it will still be made to fit your specific model.
OEM vs pattern parts
Some think that OEM parts are better than pattern. This is not necessarily the case. As stated above, there are many aftermarket companies that make parts as upgrades to the original. An advantage of them not having that OEM/genuine label, is that they are often cheaper. For the most part, pattern parts are made to a similar standard to the original parts and offer a cost-effective yet trustworthy alternative.
In a nutshell:
- Aftermarket is any part you buy after you've bought your motorcycle
- Genuine is any aftermarket part made by the company that made the original part and sold to you by your bike manufacturer
- OEM is any aftermarket part made by the company that made the original part and sold to you by that company or a reseller
- Pattern is any aftermarket part made by another company than the one which made the original.
We hope this is helpful. If you need any clarification on the above, please give us a call or email us and we'll be happy to explain.
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