Nov. 16, 2020—Fiat Chrysler Automobiles issued a position statement regarding Opt OE.
"Opt OE parts can seem like authentic Mopar, at a value price compared to purchasing from an FCA dealer," the statement says. "However, Opt OE is not OE and can create problems for collision shops and vehicle owners."
The statement explains that "Opt OE" refers to Option OE, something that can also be called "surplus" or "OE-supplier." Such parts, the statement says, "may not come from an FCA dealer and may not be manufactured to meet the same high standards as the original part."
The statement also notes that while Opt OE parts can come up in estimating systems or parts ordering documentation, there is no guarantee that the parts are Mopar parts.
The FCA position statement includes a section titled "Our Stance." It reads, in part, "Mopar does not have an Opt OE program or an OE surplus program and does not recognize the sale of Opt OE parts. ... FCA US LLC does not approve of, or recognize, repair procedures where Authentic Mopar Parts are not used for Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Ram and Fiat brand vehicles."
You can read the entire position statement here.
Asked by FenderBender about the timing of the position statement, Joshua Greenplate, FCA's product line manager for sheet metal and exterior, said Opt OE had been on the company's radar.
"We've seen a proliferation of parts sold in the Opt OE bucket from vendors other than our dealer network recently," said Greenplate. "Because Mopar generally does not sell parts to third party vendors in North America, we cannot be confident that those parts are authentic, new, and to our standards. We feel that the Opt OE category is misleadingly providing shops with confidence that they are buying new parts backed by Mopar, when that may not be the case."