The automotive aftermarket is actually part of the automotive industry which deals with supply; manufacture or remanufacture of accessories of a vehicle after it is being sold to the customers by the OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer). The aftermarket industry today fetches close to $250 billion to the US economic sector. It provides a variety of parts widely ranging in price and quality, thus enhancing the scope of customization during purchase of these parts.
The decade of the 1990s witnessed a lot of changes in the automobile and aftermarket industries. It began with 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments and at present settled down at Motor Vehicle Owners’ Right to Repair Act or simply Right to Repair introduced in 2006 in New Jersey. It is mainly a debate between automobile manufacturers and aftermarket associations where the former has to share the information to independent repair shops as they do with dealers. Since then, this industry has opened up innumerable employment opportunities to the people across the globe. A total of 3.84 million people were employed in this industry in 2010. Aftermarket also receives immense support from AAIA (Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association), a non-profit organization which was established in July 1999 and is the trade association for this Industry.
The success of aftermarket lies in its ability to specialize in a particular field and manufacture and fabricate best spare parts or sometimes referred to as replacement parts pertaining to that field. Vehicle owners usually opt for the replacement parts to give unique look to their cars, trucks and many other four wheeler vehicles. These upgrades are provided by OEM also but with fewer options. Hence a large number of public prefers aftermarket companies to actual automobile manufacturers for replacement parts. The upgrades include better sound system, chrome rims, air intake kits, car graphic kits, car bumper, headlight, tail light, fender, grille, door, hood, fog lamp, mirror, radiator, trunk lid and tailgate for the vehicles.
Though an upgraded or modified vehicle looks unique, there is a hitch in terms of law. Aftermarket is not illegal now but a few changes done to an automobile may violate practices of law and regulations. For example, headlight and tail light brightness levels may vary from place to place and so do emissions laws.
Care should betaken while purchasing an aftermarket spare part from the market. Replacement parts can be installed by car owners by themselves or with the help of an expert supervision. Very few handlings need professional guidance. It is therefore advised to seek complete knowledge about replacing parts of a car before the decision is taken. If not, issues related to warranty may also arise because the replacement sometimes nullifies the warranty of the vehicle provided by the OEM. Apart from this certain aftermarket parts are uniquely designed to meet the specifications of very few models of cars. Hence extra precautions are to be followed while choosing a spare part for your vehicle to meet these specifications.
There are many companies in the market today which trade spare parts and replacement parts of vehicles. Ever since the web world grew more influential, the online marketing strategy took over the classical marketing methods giving birth to online buying and selling of products and services. Online aftermarket stores also gained noticeable popularity among the customers worldwide. The main advantage of online purchase is that buyers from any corner of the world can access the store sitting at home which spares the pain taken to roam about places to find the right parts you want.