One of our primary goals as a company is to ethically and legally sell top quality products.
If a product is illegal, it's illegal. Price, likeness - it doesn't matter - there are national and International laws, conventions and agreements that make retailing, importing and buying such products illegal. But these are just words, here's what really matters:
Authentic brands' products are rightly sanctioned with various ratings, standards and quality control proceedures; illegal replica products are not. Why would you risk your life using a safety device that has no testing, rating or sanctioning and who garnishes an income by immitating something else?
Or why would you use a part risking the entire cost of the car when it's primary credential is that it looks like another brands' product? I wouldn't want to personally! Ever seen someone use replica Toda cam gears on a $8,000 engine build, only to see it blow up on a Dyno as a result of a cracked cam gear? We have! Total saving: $150. Total cost: $8000. It's just not worth it.
And here's the other thing that really makes it shameful - you just don't know what you're buying. These 'retailers' are intentionally misleading you. Stealing your money. Imagine paying thousands on parts, only to find later on that they're fake and can't meet up to the safety or performance standards you thought they could. You then might sell them - at a significant loss because they're just not what you thought they were. No one wants to be taken for a ride like that!
Or perhaps you're looking at a second hand, advertised-as-authentic, part - say a bumper - that's at a good price, half of what a brand new version would cost. You buy it, only to find you a) have an illegal replica and b) paid top second-hand dollar for it! Everyone loses out, but the underlying fact remains - they're illegal and it's unethical. We all have a part to play here, demand an item is authentic and legal, and don't buy illegal replicas.
There are some great quality cost efficient options out there on the market, particularly US brands. Price is not the factor we're talking about here - the US brands illustrate that price and quality are often not one and the same. We're talking about using another brands fame illegally to garnish sales, illegal replicas and unethical retailers.
Update 1 - Bride Replica Seats on Trademe
We have noticed recently that there have been illegal replica of Bride seats popping up on Trademe. The first give away is the price. I will make it quite clear - not one single international dealer of Bride seats can sell Bride seats for 20-30% off retail pricing - it's impossible, discounts simply don't run that deep, and when GST and shipping is factored in, it's impossible. The second give away is the fact that they hold stock - often 5+ sets, of each seat. No one holds $40,000 worth of stock, especially here in NZ, of a seat which only a handful will buy. The last give away is the company(s) that sell these seats are the same company(s) that have been caught in the past selling fake, illegal Takata harnesses.
Other give aways include: Steel frames - Bride only use Aluminum. Fabric - cheap fabric is easily recognisable. Black backs - Bride only has Carbon, Kevlar or sparkled silver shells. No authenticity papers - every Bride seat comes with an authenticity paper. No exception. Bolster shape and design - they're actually very hard to replicate, and they look hideous. Quality - you'll see the difference - in the kevlar, fabric, carbon, finish, materials.
The final big give away - Bride has about 5 International dealers. 30 Years, 5 dealers. They don't speak a word of English. If you're not buying through an authorised International dealer, there's a very, very high chance it's a fake. It is very easy for us to prove the origin of a Bride seat here in New Zealand so never be afraid to ask for it's provenance.
These retailers use all the excuses in the book. They're made by someone else who is in the courts with Bride over copyright... We bought them off someone else so we don't know... Or some other obfuscated reason. They're also the same retailers who shift their stock and sell them under another name a few months later... Just don't go there.
Fortyone Automotive Limited