AAIA, along with three other aftermarket trade groups,
called on the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to take action against Mazda for a
recent release that they feel attempts to mislead consumers regarding the quality of
aftermarket replacement parts.
The Mazda release recommends that all
maintenance and collision repairs be performed using Genuine Mazda Parts,
stating that, "Aftermarket parts are generally made to a lower standard in
order to cut costs and lack the testing required to determine their effectiveness
in vehicle performance and safety."
organizations take serious issue with this statement," said the aftermarket groups. "Every day, car owners or
their service professionals use non-Mazda parts in the repair of their vehicles
without any problem. In fact, many of these parts may have been produced by the
very same factory that supplied the original component to Mazda, only the label
on the box is different."
The letter from the four groups goes on to
request that the FTC call on Mazda to "either to provide substantiation of
their claim that aftermarket parts are ‘generally made to a lower standard’ or
withdraw that claim and issue a public correction in the same venues and manner
as the original release."
The letter also takes issue with a statement in the
release that "Only Genuine Mazda Parts purchased from an authorized Mazda
dealer are specifically covered by the Mazda warranty. The original warranty
could become invalid if aftermarket parts contribute to the damage of original
"Clearly, the wording of
this paragraph combined with the earlier statements in the release regarding
the quality of aftermarket parts is intended to misinform consumers not only
regarding the quality of aftermarket parts, but also their impact on vehicle
warranties," said the aftermarket groups.
The letter goes on to state, "This release is in direct conflict with the Magnuson-Moss
Warranty Act that makes it illegal for companies to deny warranty coverage simply
because an aftermarket part of service is used."
organizations called on the commission to require Mazda to
withdraw the release and issue a correction that use of non-Mazda parts are
permissible, and that it would be "Mazda’s burden of proof to prove a
non-Mazda part caused any alleged damage before denying warranty
In addition to AAIA, the letter was signed by the
Automotive Oil Change Association, Service Station Dealers of America and the
Tire Industry Association.