Monday, 15 August 2011 23:16

Ford Releases Another Crash Test Video Comparing OEM to Aftermarket Crash Parts

Ford released their second comparative tests of Genuine Ford structural steel collision parts versus aftermarket counterparts on their Youtube account on August 8.

The video is described as a "video {that} shows parts comparison performance of genuine Ford parts vs. aftermaket collision parts using, computer aided simulation tests, crash sled tests, and actual vehicle crash tests data. In all cases, genuine Ford parts perform as designed. Aftermarket parts performance leads to questions of doubt concerning proper air bag deployment."

The video is hosted by Ford Repairability Engineer Larry Coan. Coan also describes Ford's own version of the "sawzall test," which they recreated following its popularity over recent months, where a Sawzall is used to cut into aftermarket and OEM bumper beams. The test has been duplicated numerous times and depicts the difference in difficulty between cutting through an OEM bumper beam versus an aftermarket bumper beam with a Sawzall. The test has been called into question by several aftermarket parts advocates, the groups call the test "unscientific" and question whether it provides a true measure of how a part will perform in a crash, however the intent is not to show whether cutting a support member more easily means it will fail, but rather that the materials are different. In the video Coan states that Ford's saw test yielded similar results to others depicted over the past year.

Ford's comparative tests were done with 05-09 Mustang and 08-09 Focus Bumper Beams, 06-08 F-150 bumper brackets and 04-07 F-150 radiator supports, and 05-09 Mustang bumper absorbers and isolators. Initial comparisons showed that part construction and weight were noticeably different between OEM and aftermarket parts. Crash simulations between parts also showed a large difference between impact reactions. Repair costs following such crashes also revealed a difference between damage sustained from crashes where OEM and aftermarket parts were used.

Watch the full video on Ford's Youtube channel HERE.

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