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Out of curiosity where are most aftermarket parts made? America, Canada, China, Mexico or elsewhere?

The parts business is extremely well developed and diversified in North America. Most parts I see are North American made, i.e. US, Canada or Mexico.

Wear parts such as brake pads, rotors, shoes are now more and more made in China.

Magna International, one of the world’s largest parts makers, has over 100 plants world wide but mostly in Canada, the US, Mexico and Europe. They even assembled whole Dodge minivans in Austria for the European market.

So, no matter what Donald Trump wants or tries to do, this is not about to change. A part used in a North American car may cross the US-Canada border up to 7 times before its final inclusion in a car.

Since we’re clearly on the subject of globalization, I’ll add a few things

Some of the most popular US-brand cars are made in Mexico

So if you want to support american workers, buying a Toyota Camry may be a good choice. Smart people will know you’re driving a car built by american workers. Ignorant people will call you a sellout, but their own car may be a Mexican-built Ford Fusion or Chevy Silverado

Mexico’s auto industry is going very strong, and by all accounts, the quality of the vehicles . . . those destined for the US market, anyways . . . is no different, versus those same cars which were built in the US or Canada

Another interesting observation . . . I believe Mercedes-Benz built some C-class cars in Brazil. I’m not sure if this is still the case, though. When I was working at the dealer, I could find no difference in quality or reliability, versus the cars built in Germany. Brazil is probably not one of the countries people associate with a manufacturer of luxury-brand vehicles, but Benz clearly thought they were up to the task. Note I am not saying Benz vehicles are particularly reliable. I am merely saying the Brazilian-built vehicles were no better or worse than the others.

There are no easy answers

Seems somewhat inefficient to me…


The original question is a bit vague to me. It is a bit like asking where are the majority of TV’s made. Nowadays it is all over the place, a lot of stores don’t even list the maker of the part and just state “distributed by —”. To me it seems it is all about quality control. The factory could be anywhere in the world.

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I don’t care where a part is made as long as the price is reasonable and the quality is there. I want everything to be made in the good old USA but I know that’s unreasonable in this day and age.

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Many aftermarket parts are made at the same plant as the OEM parts. They just don’t sell them through the manufacturer, so they are classified as aftermarket.

Sparkplugs are a prime example…You can buy Honda plugs for you Accord at $8+ through the dealer…or you can go to your local parts store and buy them the exact same NGK plug (except there’s no Honda label on the plug) for $4.

I’ve bought light assembly’s that were made by the same supplier used by the manufacturer for less then 1/3rd the OEM price.

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Believe it or not globalization brings down the costs of everything. My large Panasonic TV is “Made in Mexico form local and imported parts”… The key high tech parts no doubt come from Japan, many of the other electronic parts from the US, some parts from China and the plastic cabinet and final assembly from Mexico.

Similarly, a bolt may come from a Canadian plant which makes millions of them very efficiently. That bolt goes to the US maker of a clutch plate, which is then shipped back to a Canadian or Mexican plant for making the actual clutch. The clutch in return will cross the border again to be put into a car, which can be exported to any country.

A friend travelled to Italy and had a made to measure suit made there. Four weeks later, the suit arrived from Toronto, Canada. The tailor had a colleague in Toronto who subcontracted the work for North America. If he had gone to this tailor directly the price would no doubt have been lower, not due to the transportation, but due to the elimination of one markup which is high in the clothing industry.

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Every value added part or product that we buy or sell where I work has to bear a COO mark. But the rules are really varied and confusing.

Yes, you are correct, but a certain orange spray-tanned person in a position of power does not seem to be able to comprehend this reality.

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Yes, going back to pure “made in America” is like unscrambling scrambled eggs or an omelet!

Volkswagen just became the world’s largest car company, surpassing Toyota. VWs made in Germany are only a small part of the total. They have been in China for over 30 years, and are a household name in Mexico and Brazil where they have huge production. They bought Skoda and Seat of Spain and with Audi and Porsche now cover the complete spectrum from cheapo econoboxes to luxury and upscale sports cars.

Germans like to drive German cars, so they have a large market share in that country, like French cars have in France. Brits like driving cars with British NAMES and BADGES on them, although the vehicle is likely made in Germany.

Brand loyalty in the rest of the world is very fluid, and we can thank Richard Nixon for brow beating Japanese car manufacturers to locate in the USA, mostly at the urging of the UAW to reduce those pesky imports. We now have “Japanese” cars that accommodate North American sized people in comfort. My wife’s little 1977 Dodge Colt was one of the last “designed for Japanese” cars sold and it was cramped.

Car manufacturing, aircraft production, and electronics are truly global activities. All any country can hope to negotiate is maximum local content!!

Just throwing in a tariff for car parts made in mexico will be passed on to the consumer, Let’s call it another tax that will be paid for the consumers that can probably least afford it, same as gas tax and registration fee increases.

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All this talk of tariffs make me think of the “good old” chicken tax on pickup trucks :smirk:

OK, what is a chicken tax, is this what you are referring to @db4690
"The chicken tax is a 25% tariff on potato starch, dextrin, brandy, and light trucks imposed in 1963 by the United States under President Lyndon B. Johnson in response to tariffs placed by France and West Germany on importation of U.S. chicken.[1] The period from 1961–1964[2] of tensions and negotiations surrounding the issue was known as the “Chicken War,” taking place at the height of Cold War"

Electronics have been dropping in price ldecades before globalization

Yup, that’s the one :smiley:

I deliver to Subaru in Lafayette,IN everyday. I pick up parts in NE Illinois from manufacturing plants. I don’t see any imported parts from my end…but there are 1000 trucks going in and out on a daily basis there.

Correct! Credit Morita of Sony to initially harness the transistor and start applying it to all manner of electronic gear. I tried to sell computers when they cost $5 million for a decent setup in the 60s…

Miniaturization and automated production led the way to reduced cost. In the early 60s my father in law had a “large” 21 inch RCA TV with tubes housed in a great looking walnut cabinet! That set was almost a month’s wages for a factory worker. The tubes burned out with great regularity.

Globalization has merely optimised an already very efficient manufacturing technology.

Globalization is nothing new. The French and Italian merchants complained about cheap Chinese garments…in the 1500s! As a result complex laws were passed regulating the amount of imports allowed.