Fake parts for your RX-8

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warpc0il
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Fake parts for your RX-8

Post by warpc0il » Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:04 pm

As a community we have been talking forever about fake ignition coils but these days they’re far from the only fake parts being offered for your car.

“Fake” coils include replicas of the Mazda OEM coils sold in convincing branded boxes, having been produced in a factory in China and sold wholesale for $3 each. These factories switched their production to “Rev C” even before those parts became available through the official Mazda parts channels.

Some fake coils are less sophisticated and don’t claim to be the genuine article, just “compatible”. This makes them slightly more honest but no less likely to fail – sometimes almost immediately but often just when you least expect it - “It can’t be a failed coil, as I’ve just replaced them” - plus it takes an experienced ear to detect a non-firing trailing plug.

Other suppliers actually put their own brands on these products but the failure rate is just as high, this includes NGK, which is further complicated by there being both real and fake NGK-branded coils on the market, none of which are any good.

Switching to D585 coils doesn’t help, as there are even more fake D585 coils on the market and some of those are so bad that they’re just as likely to catch fire, as fire your engine. The loom adapters to fit these to the RX-8 can be just as bad.

Similarly, there are both (fake) branded, poor branded and non-branded replacement HT leads that are joining the queue to kill your engine.

Fake NGK spark plugs have been around for more than 40 years, mainly targeting the part numbers used by popular family cars, SUVs and hot hatches. We had been immune until about 5 years ago, because the RX-8 plugs are so niche. However, the fakers must have noticed the retail price for a set of RX-8 plugs and just couldn’t resist it. There are probably more fake coils and plugs available now than real ones.

We see a similar situation with brake pads.

All the common brands are being faked and the materials and construction is often way below safety standards. They can catch fire, or fall apart, or turn to dust in a few hundred miles, or just not stop the car like they should.

The same can be said of oil and air filters. It doesn’t take much imagination to visualise what can happen if a fake oil filter either fails to filter the oil or collapses and blocks the flow.

This takes us back to the area of “compatible” rather than outright “fake”.

Any supplier that offers the same oil filter for both the Series 1 and R3 is not to be trusted, as the genuine parts are significantly different, due to the higher bypass pressure required in the R3.

The same argument applies in many other areas, such as the front O2 sensor. Mazda had to specify a different part for the 231 and the 192 because they couldn’t get the same part to perform properly in both. Strange that many aftermarket suppliers quote both different Mazda part numbers as compatible with their single offering – they’re just lying.

This is the same lie that applies to replacement suspension springs.

Mazda used a whole bunch of different springs during the production of the RX-8, these include;
- Series 1 “Standard” suspension. Not fitted to any UK-spec cars but common in the US, JDM and some other markets, especially (but not limited to) those with auto transmission.
- Series 1 “Sports” suspension. This is what most of our cars came with, unless listed below.
- PZ suspension. Totally bespoke and unique dampers and springs, only now available through the Club Shop.
- Series 1 40th Anniversary. Also unique and not even all the same (at least 3 different versions) as Mazda tried to replicate the PZ performance using off-the-shelf parts.
- Series 2 “Standard” suspension. Again not fitted to any UK-spec cars but some JDM etc.
- Series 2 “Sports” suspension. This is what is fitted on UK-spec R3s

So we have at least six, and more like eight, significantly different suspension springs fitted to RX-8s, but so many suppliers are happy to list all or any combination of the related part numbers as “compatible” with their single replacement spring. They just don’t care.

Understand that the parts mentioned above doesn’t paint a complete picture (I haven’t even talked about cats or tyres) and that they’re not only being sold through ebay and such. Walk into your local motor factor and that’s often what you’ll be sold

Sticking to the dealer network doesn’t always help as these fakes (coils and plugs) have been known to be supplied by dealers and it’s unclear at what point in the supply chain they’ve been injected – just the dealer buying from a dodgy source or somewhere further back. Dealers can also get lazy/confused and assume that a later part, e.g. the R3 oil filter, must be backwards compatible with the earlier cars – which it isn’t.

With many fake parts these days, the price isn’t always an indication of “real or not real”.

Too cheap and it’s (almost) certainly a fake but the retail prices can be so high that even what appears “cheap” to those of us in the know, may still have looked reassuringly expensive to the previous owner of the car you just bought.

Fakers have also caught on to this and often sell at prices approaching 90% of retail list. Some ebay sellers even offer the same items on a BIN listing over the retail price – as some idiot/desperate person may bite and it gives credibility to the auction listings – where someone might think they’ve scored a bargain.

Be careful out there. Only buy through suppliers you trust.

If you must buy through ebay etc, for branded parts (filters, brake pads, plugs etc) check the manufacturers website for what to lookout for in spotting fakes. Many companies were in denial for years and didn’t want the public to know that their products were being faked. Most have now realised that the best way to protect their brands and their customers is to highlight this issue and provide details.

Fakes aren't limited to servicing and replacement parts either, as there are now fake AEM and Racing Beat Intakes being produced, as poor replicas of the originals.

Please use this thread to highlight your experiences with fake, or dodgy “compatible” parts, so that others might not fall into the same trap.

I've add some links to “How to spot fakes” for some of the brands that you might be tempted by.

http://www.ngk-sparkplugs.jp/english/te ... index.html
https://www.denso.com.au/index.php?rout ... news_id=70
https://www.brembo.com/en/company/news/ ... zing-fakes
http://www.safebraking.com/fighting-fak ... erfeiters/
https://garagewire.co.uk/news/garages-w ... e%20brakes
https://www.mahle-aftermarket.com/eu/en ... e-vs-fake/
https://www.facebook.com/pg/doublekauto ... 2455077595
https://textar.com/en/fighting-the-fakes/
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-10846035
https://www.thenational.ae/uae/brake-pa ... k-1.773901
These users thanked the author warpc0il for the post (total 6):
casey (Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:15 pm) • 350matt (Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:21 pm) • sKenDread (Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:42 pm) • Broron (Thu Mar 26, 2020 3:40 pm) • ChrisHolmes (Thu Mar 26, 2020 4:07 pm) • Ninja_Freak (Fri Mar 27, 2020 11:15 am)
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Re: Fake parts for your RX-8

Post by 350matt » Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:21 pm

Top post Dave thanks

I'm assuming Euro car parts and my local factors are OK as I've dealt with them for years but its not impossible their supply chain gets 'contaminated' with inferior stuff

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Re: Fake parts for your RX-8

Post by warpc0il » Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:40 pm

Euro Car Parts often list the same "compatible" replacements for what should be different parts.

They also got caught a few years ago shipping fake Brembo and other brake pads. They said that they were genuine, just sourced through a direct channel rather than the official UK importers, but they proved to be fakes.

Other outlets owned by the same group as ECP also had the same issue.

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Re: Fake parts for your RX-8

Post by ChrisHolmes » Thu Mar 26, 2020 4:17 pm

When I managed the Pakistan export house business for Perkins Powerpart I sat in a traders shop in downtown Lahore and asked for samples of each piston brand he sold for the Perkins 3.152 engine. I think it got up to over 10 examples and three of those were in Perkins branded boxes! What was really weird was that he had LUK and Lucas boxed pistons and they never made pistons. When challenged on this he said some customer like the LUK and Lucas brand so they like to buy things in those boxes!
Not one of the pistons in the various boxes came from the same supplier so huge was the “number two” business over there
Great days but the OE brainwashed marketing guys in Peterborough could comprehend the Pakistan parts market.
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Racing Beat Alloy flywheel
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Rear Diffuser
SOHN Adaptor
Adaptronic ECU

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Re: Fake parts for your RX-8

Post by warpc0il » Thu Mar 26, 2020 4:20 pm

That's an interesting definition of "number two" business :roll:

I suppose the next obvious question is, were any of the clones any good, or were they all sh!t?
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Re: Fake parts for your RX-8

Post by warpc0il » Thu Mar 26, 2020 4:41 pm

Added some links to the original post, including this one from the UAE
https://www.thenational.ae/uae/brake-pa ... k-1.773901 :shock: [-X
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Re: Fake parts for your RX-8

Post by ChrisHolmes » Thu Mar 26, 2020 11:29 pm

warpc0il wrote:
Thu Mar 26, 2020 4:20 pm
That's an interesting definition of "number two" business :roll:

I suppose the next obvious question is, were any of the clones any good, or were they all sh!t?
If they were sh!t the traders would soon be in the sh!t it was a very structured market in downtown Lahore controlled by a couple of large importers.
Very, very interesting group of people. I was once taken on the best trip in my life all the way to Landi Kotal to see an Afghan importers storage yards, one with 500,000 genuine CAV 629 fuel filters!
Have look for Landi Kotal on Google maps!
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Racing Beat Alloy flywheel
Exedy Stg1 Clutch
White Line ARBs
Speedline diamond cut alloy wheels
Custom front bumper, grills & Side Skirts
Mazdaspeed Rear Spoiler (Customised)
Rear Diffuser
SOHN Adaptor
Adaptronic ECU

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warpc0il
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Re: Fake parts for your RX-8

Post by warpc0il » Fri Mar 27, 2020 2:44 pm

You don't get many warranty complaints from people that suffer total brake failure.

It's a bit like the watch with the lifetime guarantee, when the mainspring breaks it slashes your wrist :shock:
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