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Aftermarket Systems and Warranty Issues

I purchased a used 2009 Mitsubishi Lancer from a Mitsubishi dealer. The car came with the factory warranty included. However, after owning the car for 3 years, we have learned due to an issue with air intake valve that at least two of the car’s systems are aftermarket: Exhaust system, and air intake . The dealer is telling us that none of these systems are covered under the factory warranty. My issue is that the dealer did not tell us the car had aftermarket systems when we purchased the car. I feel that the dealer should absorb the cost of the aftermarket parts if in fact those same parts would have been covered by the factory warranty.
Do I have a case with the dealer?

I doubt it, but I also doubt that the air intake system or exhaust system would need warranty-covered repairs. Do they? What’s the problem?

Nope. The factory warranty only covers what the factory shipped, and only as defined i the warranty, and any modifications that might affect those things can void even that coverage.

No dealer can or should be expected to examine a used vehicle on their lot for aftermarket parts. It is up to the buyer to be sure that the vehicle meets their satisfaction, and if the buyer’s criteria incude all original parts it is up to the buyer to check that out.

Sorry, but in this case you have no recourse.

So a Mitsubishi dealer who sells a Mitsubishi car has no obligation to know what he’s selling? Seems very unethical to me.

For texases, a piece of the airtake filter broke off and is lodged in the engine, blocking airflow to the engine. A bracket mounting the exhaust system is also broken, leaving the muffler about 2 inches off the ground.

The way I see it, the dealer is being overly picky. The broken exhaust bracket is a 10 min fix at best. Was this air filter replaced by the dealer? If yes I say they should warranty it. Also they could write this up so your warranty would cover it.

I’m guessing the prior put on some aftermarket cold air intake (maybe a cheapie from Ebay) that broke. So I’m not surprised the dealer said ‘no my problem’.

Broken parts are almost always non-warranty - factory OR aftermarket. Who’s to say you weren’t putzing around under the hood and gone done dropped your sledge hammer on a piece of plastic?

That said, should the dealer take some kind action in the interest of “good customer service?” Maybe - if you just bought the car last week. You’ve had it for three years, though, it’s going to be a different story.

The dealer is going to let me know if anything else on the car is aftermarket. But it’s now only good to know information only versus information that might have swayed us not to buy the car. Now I truly understand Caveat Emptor. I trusted this dealer as we had previously purchased a brand new Cadillac from them. They positioned this Lancer for my son as almost “new” - only 4K miles and with the factory warranty included. If I learn that the car was modified in any way to go faster, etc. I’ll be even more upset as I would never have put an 18 year old behind the wheel of such a car.
BTW: The only item under warranty discussion is the air intake system not the bracket on the muffler. And they told us that it would be warrantied under factory. It’s a 5 year, 60K warranty so not yet expired.
Thanks for all the responses. Looks like I’m stuck with no warranty unless the dealer decides his reputation is in danger. I just hope that that nothing else is aftermarket.

There’s another variable here. You’ve been driving the car for three years. Honestly, I can’t see where th dealer has done anything wrong.

It doesn’t matter how long I’ve been driving the car. Factory warranty is 5 years/60K miles and I am within those parameters. I bought the car because it only had 4K miles, meaning the warranty was good for another 56K miles or 93% of the warranty value. Now when I need it or may need it in the next 20K miles I find out I don’t have it, so it’s a problem for me.

The dealer is not responsible for aftermarket parts and they are also not responsible for any damaged caused by those parts. The warranty is still in effect though if something happens that is not directly caused by those aftermarket parts.

You, and the dealer would not notice an aftermarket intake unless you opened the hood and knew what they look like. If it had a CAI (cold air intake), that would be a single tube leading down to an exposed air filter element and some people believe that they increase the engines performance.

If you opened the hood and didn’t know what a CAI is, I can understand that. I can even believe that the salesman wouldn’t know a CAI if it bit him in the face, but I’ll bet your son knew. But even you should have known by the diameter of the exhaust and the loud sound that the exhaust made, that it was aftermarket.

And you would also agree as a dealer that you would have no ethical issues selling someone a car with only 4K miles and touting the factory warranty and then the customer finding out the car had after market parts? This just seems so wrong to me in so many ways.

It does matter how long you’ve owned the car. Had you just bought the car, you coud make a better argument that since the aftermarket parts were in there at the time of sale repairs should be covered. But three years later?

One last thing, if the vehicle doesn’t have a CAI, but just an aftermarket filter, then the dealer will not be able to duck the warranty, as long as the replacement airfilter meets manufacturers specifications.

Here’s another way of making TSMB’s point - how does the dealer KNOW that you didn’t put on the aftermarket parts? You know you didn’t, but how does the dealer know that?

I.e., if you put a Fram air filter element into the stock air filter housing, the warranty is still good. If you used a K&N, you might have an issue as they are not factory spec, but even then, the dealer would have to prove that it was the filter that caused the problem. Just having an aftermarket, non spec filter does not void the warranty.

Legally, Keith, I agree. But in reality, once the dealer or manufacturer rejects the warranty claim it becomes up to the owner to prove that it did NOT contribute to the problem.