During the past five years, the United States has seen a decline in imports of auto parts. In 2005, imports of auto parts reached $95.2 billion, up from $61.6 billion in 1999. By comparison, exports of auto parts increased by 18 percent during the same period. Because of this, the U.S. auto parts trade deficit has more than doubled, rising from $49.9 billion in 1999 to $58.9 billion in 2006.
Despite this, the relationship between the Big Three domestic and Japanese competitors is improving. Auto parts are primarily purchased by vehicle manufacturers, making up two-thirds to three-quarters of the market. The balance of production goes to commercial installers and the retail market. However, the relationship between the domestic and Japanese companies is still not as strong as that of the Japanese. For instance, the domestic Big Three auto parts suppliers are relatively poor compared to their Japanese counterparts.
In addition to mechanical parts, automobiles also feature numerous interior components, including seats, instrument panels, HVAC systems, and wiring. The auto parts industry relies heavily on petroleum products and other raw materials from all over the world. Some of the most common materials in automobiles include steel, rubber, plastic, and aluminum. The global market is currently experiencing intense competition, and many customers are demanding lower quality at the expense of greater cost. In 2005, the overall market for automobile parts grew by 17.2 percent, whereas the shares of some parts have remained relatively stable.
There are three main types of auto parts, and each has a different purpose. Original equipment, also known as OE, is intended for assembly on a vehicle. Aftermarket parts, meanwhile, are designed to replace damaged OE parts. In addition, aftermarket parts are sold to repair cars and accessories after the vehicle has been sold. A commercial auto parts retailing business requires a substantial capital investment. It’s essential to have a well-designed business plan to meet your goals and secure startup capital from investors.
Aside from mechanical parts, cars also require a large amount of electrical parts. Batteries, tires, windshield wipers, brake pads, and spark plugs are some of the essential parts for your car. While you’re driving around, it’s best to know the exact date when most of these components should be replaced. Some parts, however, need to be replaced more often. To get a better idea of when they’re due, consult your vehicle’s owner’s manual.
Aftermarket auto parts, on the other hand, can give you the freedom to customize your vehicle. These parts do not conform to original manufacturer specifications and can even void a vehicle’s warranty. Aftermarket auto parts, on the other hand, are manufactured by companies that specialize in specific fields and offer aftermarket services. Some people may even install them themselves, but this is not advised if you lease a vehicle. For the sake of safety, it’s best to seek the assistance of an auto mechanic or a car dealer.
Another important part of a vehicle is the transmission fluid. You should check the fluid level in your car’s transmission every month or so to make sure there are no problems. If it’s too dark, you should change it. Changing transmission fluid is important for your car’s efficiency. Also, check the shock absorbers, which are liquid, gas, and magnetic. Aside from this, if you suspect a leak in the fluid, replace it as soon as possible.