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CAPA Celebrates 15 Years of Vehicle Test Fit Program

Program has performed more than 10,000 tests since 1999 to ensure parts match OE specifications.

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The Certified Automotive Parts Association (CAPA) is celebrating the milestone of the creation of its Vehicle Test Fit (VTF) program.

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Since incorporating the program in 1999, CAPA has performed more than 10,000 VTFs to ensure that the gap, flush and fit of CAPA parts match those of OE parts. Since then, there has been a dramatic increase in the quality of the aftermarket parts submitted for testing under CAPA’s rigorous certification standards.

CAPA says its program was so successful that after it was initiated, the Collision Industry Conference (CIC) performed blind test fits to compare CAPA Certified parts to OE service parts.  CIC participants selected the CAPA Certified part five out of eight times as a better fit.

“While today CAPA’s unique vehicle test fit process has become the industry-accepted standard for test fitting aftermarket parts, it was entirely innovative when we introduced it,” said Debbie Klouser, CAPA’s director of operations. “Considering all of CAPA’s extensive certification requirements, the VTF has played the single most critical role in today’s acceptance of CAPA Certified parts as the best way to contain repair costs without compromising quality.”  
           
In order for a part to become CAPA Certified, it must go through a rigorous set of comparative tests to determine fit. These tests ensure that all of the important fit, finish, material and performance properties of the CAPA Certified part are the same as the OE brand part.

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“Because full transparency is critically important when evaluating the efficacy of any certification program, CAPA makes all of its standards, procedures, tolerances and processes fully available to anyone who asks,” said Jack Gillis, CAPA executive director.


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