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  View original topic: When "German Quality" means Made in China
whobba Sun Nov 08, 2009 10:48 am

I'm overhauling the engine in the 77 beetle, and ordered some parts. I decided I'd go for a new oil cooler, because after all it's a critical component of the VW cooling system. So I ordered the "German Quality" oil cooler from an online VW parts house. When the shipment shows up, I inspect the oil cooler - lo and behold it's made in China. But wait, there's more - it's made by EMPI.

I think the end of an era is upon us, when German Quality is defined as EMPI - Made in China.

The oil cooler looks identical to the original VW one that I pulled off of the engine, with the exception of the cooling fins at the top and bottom - see pics. Makes me long for the days when we could buy real German parts.

So, what do you all make of this? Do you think this oil cooler really is "German Quality" and should I use it - or is it EMPI crap and should I send it back? Are we being mislead by our retailers into believing that crap made in China is as good as the German originals?


New Oil Cooler - compare with Orig VW below

Original VW branded oil cooler - see the difference?

Side by Side: Old and New

Side by Side: Old and New

From the website - reads: "This is a 100% New OE German quality oil cooler. Do not be fooled into buying a so-called rebuilt cooler which is going to be a 30 year old oil cooler which has been dug out of a wrecking yard - rinsed out with solvent of given a coat of paint. You've spent countless hours & dollars building your new engine - don't risk blowing it up because you used a 30 year old cooler. Play it smart - and at this price - you can't loss." (grammatical errors in bold are original)

And, the crowning glory: EMPI.

Matt Wilson Sun Nov 08, 2009 11:00 am

Which one weighs more?

delliott101 Sun Nov 08, 2009 11:06 am

I thought it was gonna be JC Whitney... not Cip1...

Actually, I don't see anything wong with rinsing out the old one til it's really clean. I did that with mine. I mean, it's not rusted out or anything.

If you want to replace it with a brand new cooler, I would call around (like Wolfsburg West, Mid America Motorworks, etc) and see what they have available.

Antonio Trejo Sun Nov 08, 2009 11:06 am

This is the genuine Sedan oil cooler made in Germany by VW for the mexican Sedan 1600 / 1600i.
A lot of shops describe their products as 'Genuine German Quality' which can mean lots of things - but it doesn't mean Genuine VW

whobba Sun Nov 08, 2009 11:28 am

Antonio Trejo wrote: This is the genuine Sedan oil cooler made in Germany by VW for the mexican Sedan 1600 / 1600i.
A lot of shops describe their products as 'Genuine German Quality' which can mean lots of things - but it doesn't mean Genuine VW


Antonio - is this cooler compatible w/the German built 1600? And if so, is it available?

Antonio Trejo Sun Nov 08, 2009 11:34 am

Whobba,
Yes, its in my stock now, I still have 12. But I do not know if works for a German Beetle. VW of Germany made the same oil cooler for the mexican Sedan from 1973 (carburator 1600) to 2004 (fuel injection, 1600i).

birddog1 Sun Nov 08, 2009 11:42 am

Sadly it's epidemic. Not only "German Quality" but totally misrepresenting parts as German and receiving something else. I guess they assume once you get over being annoyed and discover there are no parts Made in Germany you will keep it. I always send it back if they fool me. I've even had CIP1 tell me on the phone a part was German and get a China part. When i called they tell me the company is German. Buyer beware.

Long live NOS German parts

As far as the cooler goes I would be more concerned about what you can't see

ronbdavis Sun Nov 08, 2009 12:35 pm

I've noticed that if you enter an OG VW part number in Google lately, an awful lot of the results are Chinese companies making reproductions. Really sad. I guess Brazilian is the new German in most cases.

Bruce Sun Nov 08, 2009 12:56 pm

Antonio Trejo wrote: Whobba,
I do not know if works for a German Beetle.
Fits all German Beetles made from 71-79.

Viande Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:38 pm

That is Cip1 cashing in on the quality that German parts are known for. Much as teh current owner of EMPI did with the name made for it during the ownership by Joe Vittone. Cip1 with their rating system is a joke. This is simply a way to charge more for cheap offshore parts. Most of the Chinese parts are still available in German OEM and Mexican OEM. Cip1 is the Walmart of the VW parts world. Cheap crap for cheap people. Why sell a German oil cooler for 99 dollars and make 20 dollars when you can sell a Chinese unit for 49 a make 30. After all who cares how long it lasts or if it bursts. With these prices they will come back again and again and again... Let those silly vendors with ethics that care about their customers sell parts that will last as long as the originals and fit correctly. Hey once the people finally catch on we can always throw a big New and Improved logo on parts to keep the sheep coming back...

Viande Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:45 pm

ronbdavis wrote: I've noticed that if you enter an OG VW part number in Google lately, an awful lot of the results are Chinese companies making reproductions. Really sad. I guess Brazilian is the new German in most cases.

You need to be very careful whom you buy from. The boxes are also being duplicated now. But like everything else you can tell if you're not blinded by the cheap price. I have a list of over 3000 parts still made in Germany. They are not gone they are just not cheap. This is why they are not available here. No one is willing to pay for a seal that will last another 30+ years when they can get one that will last 2 for half the price. :?

EZ Gruv Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:03 pm

Official whine thread:

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=201727

Glenn Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:07 pm

Nothing new here.

Bruck of Germany... made in China.

http://csmart.en.made-in-china.com/product/SoRnYLXrHfcF/China-VW-Beetle-Distributor.html
Quote: bruck germany vacuum advance (svda) distributor - complete - all beetle style engines

Glenn Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:08 pm

EZ Gruv wrote: Official whine thread:

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=201727

Let's use this one



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