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CAPA reached this milestone last month at its 22,000-square-foot Test Fit center in Grand Rapids, Mich.
The Certified Automotive Parts Association (CAPA) announced that it recently performed its 25,000th Vehicle Test Fit (VTF). CAPA reached this milestone last month at its 22,000-square-foot Test Fit center in Grand Rapids, Mich. CAPA also has a 14,000-square-foot Test Fit center in Irvine, Calif.
CAPA developed the Vehicle Test Fit (VTF) in the mid-90s to confirm the fit quality of the aftermarket parts it had certified, as well as their car company brand counterparts, on actual vehicles. CAPA made the test a certification requirement in 1999, when the first “VTF B” was performed. Since that time, “Vehicle Test Fit” and “VTF” have become recognized terms within the aftermarket industry, whether performed by CAPA or not.
After a part achieves CAPA certification, CAPA continues to use its VTF systems to confirm its ongoing conformance. CAPA has determined that both fully transparent comprehensive standards and ongoing compliance testing are the only way to insure functional equivalency to car company brand parts. As part of its quality complaint program, CAPA purchases complaint parts directly from the market to investigate the reported fit or appearance problems. In addition, CAPA purchases brand new parts directly from part distributors to monitor part quality. If non-conformances are observed, the manufacturer must take corrective action to bring their product back into compliance or CAPA Certification will be revoked.
“CAPA’s VTF process, as part of the CAPA certification process and as the best method to validate and monitor part quality after certification, has played the single most critical role in the industry’s acceptance of CAPA Certified Parts,” said Debbie Klouser, CAPA’s director of operations. “Even outspoken critics of aftermarket parts have come to realize that the CAPA Certification program is the best way to identify truly high-quality alternative parts.”