As one of the year's busiest travel periods approaches, the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI) is reminding holiday motorists to ensure their vehicle is in peak condition, and that pre-trip servicing includes the use of genuine replacement parts.
The FCAI's Genuine Is Best initiative focuses on the safety, performance and durability benefits delivered by parts made or selected by a vehicle's maker, and tested as one of its integral components.
FCAI Chief Executive and Genuine Is Best spokesperson Tony Weber said longer than usual journeys and occasional highway congestion places extra strain on everything from drivetrain components and cooling systems to a vehicle's air-conditioning, brakes and tyres.
"If you're planning for a safe and stress-free holiday road trip, make sure your car is serviced or repaired with genuine parts, supplied by the vehicle's maker, so that it drives, functions and protects in the way it's designed to," Mr Weber said.
"Genuine parts can sometimes cost a little more, but that extra investment is worth every cent," he said.
A recent Genuine Is Best investigation exposed the wide availability of counterfeit parts in Australia, branded and packaged to replicate genuine, manufacturer approved items.
Alloy wheels, imitating genuine Mercedes-Benz rims, and offered for sale by a local online supplier, were found to be of dangerously low quality in a controlled, 50km/h pothole test, replicating the type of impacts often encountered on rural holiday roads.
Even at the test's low speed, the counterfeit wheel, virtually indistinguishable from a factory item, broke apart.
A graphic video of the wheel pothole test, and information designed to help consumers keep their vehicle safe through the use of genuine parts is available at www.genuineisbest.com.au. The Genuine Is Best website also features six steps to staying genuine, instant expert repair inspection tips and the essential crash survival guide.
Mr Weber reminded consumers that the easiest way to tell if a part is genuine is to purchase it through the vehicle manufacturer's authorised supply chain.