Image taken from IBC Japan Parts

Is your vehicle breaking down and in need of repair? Selecting from various brands can be puzzling and expensive if not done correctly.

First, you need to familiarize yourself with two types of vehicle parts - OEM parts (Original Equipment Manufacturer) and Aftermarket Parts.

OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) Parts have been made by the vehicle’s manufacturer and are the original parts used in making the vehicle. It may also be a replacement part approved by the maker.

Aftermarket Parts is a term often used for non-OEM replacement parts.

Aftermarket vs. OEM

Aftermarket PROS:
• Usually cheaper than OEM.
• Some aftermarket parts were created equal, while some outperform OEM parts in terms of quality.

• More brands available = more choices for you.

• More available in different repair shops

Aftermarket CONS:
• Some may have inferior quality due to the kind of material used.
• Selecting the right part may be very challenging due to extensive inventory.

• No hassle; you get the exact, original part for your vehicle without the guess work.
• Better quality assurance; the replacement part is just as good.

• Available warranty; most come with a 1-year warranty.

• More Expensive; these tend to cost over 60% more than aftermarket parts.
• Limited branches; they are sold exclusively in dealers’ shops.

• Some OEMs may not be as durable as the higher quality Aftermarket parts.


To be on the safer side, its best to buy OEM parts for your vehicle than risk with unrecognized aftermarket parts. However, if you have done enough research on the quality of available aftermarket parts, you may opt for that as long as you purchase only from credible sources.

IBC Japan Parts is a reputable source of quality OEM and Aftermarket parts and accessories for your vehicle maintenance and accessorizing needs. Simply log on to IBC Japan Parts to get started. Registration is FREE and easy!

ATTENTION Christchurch Registered Motor Vehicle Traders:

AutoTerminal Christchurch recently relocated to 162 Montreal St and has Opening Specials for you to purchase! Register now to avail of these Opening Specials! Registration is FREE!
Call (03) 365 2974 for more details!

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Regular servicing of your vehicle can minimize the risk of major repair bills and should ensure reliability, but there are some basic checks and maintenance you can carry out yourself.

Here are a few basic maintenance items you can carry out.

Wash your vehicle on a regular basis. This will ensure the paint condition will be maintained. Polish paintwork periodically to protect the paint and maintain shine.

Engine Oil –
Check engine oil regularly. Watch for oil leaks under vehicle and have remedied. Have oil and filter changed at manufacturers recommended intervals.

Lights –
Check operation of all lights on a regular basis.

Power steering –
Fluid levels on power steering should be checked when vehicle is serviced. If you notice the level is low this normally indicates a leak – have this checked by your servicing garage.

Screen wash –
Regularly check and refill screen wash when needed. A good quality additive will ensure better cleaning.

Tyres –
Check tyre pressures regularly, including spare wheel. Visually check for wear on tyres. If unsure your local tyre dealer will usually do this free of charge. If uneven tyre wear is noticed a wheel alignment will be needed.

Water –
Check engine coolant in the reservoir. Never remove the radiator cap when the engine is hot. Top up reservoir as necessary. Ensure antifreeze is the correct concentration. This should be done as part of regular servicing.

Wipers –
Replace wiper blade refills when necessary. Your local parts supplier can supply these.

If you notice anything unusual when driving your vehicle or if any warning lights show on the dash have it checked at your local dealer as soon as possible.

Amalia Rose Aviles


According to IMVDA’s recent report, used-vehicle registrations have persistently fallen.

The global struggle continues to loom and to survive the recession, dealers must only transact with a reputable source. New Zealand (ATNZ) is New Zealand’s largest wholesaler of used Japanese imports and why wouldn’t it be? Here are 5 reasons why ATNZ is the best:

1. E2E quality assurance

E2E or end to end is ATNZ’s stringent quality control system. You are assured that all vehicles have gone through: accident and damage inspections, full interior and exterior cleaning, odometer certification, stolen vehicle check, MAF inspections, mechanical inspections, WOF compliance, mechanical inspections and grooming.

2. Massive used vehicle inventory

ATNZ’s got over 4,000+ quality used vehicles for you to choose from. Not only that; if you haven’t found what you’ve been looking for, you may pre order and let ATNZ find it for you.

3. Specials sent straight to your inbox

Signing up is free and you can receive hot bargains and fresh imports via email.

4. Delivery service

You don’t have to move a muscle. For an added fee, ATNZ can arrange the delivery of your vehicles.

5. Unparalleled 24/7 customer assistance

You can chat, skype or email an ATNZ representative any time. New Zealand (ATNZ) is proud to announce its new End to End quality control system or E2E. E2E is an intensive quality control system comprised of vehicle history checks, mechanical and structural inspections, compliance, panel and paint when needed and finally, a full interior and exterior groom on all imported vehicles. We at ATNZ have appointed certified technicians and partnered with reputable agencies namely: AA New Zealand and VSS (Vehicle Safety Systems) to ensure all vehicles not only meet NZTA standards, but exceed them.

Click here to read more about E2E in the ATNZ website.

If you are considering importing or purchasing used Japanese vehicles, check out the top 10 used vehicles in NZ.

Over 4,000 used vehicles may be found at (for dealers) and (for retail). Both websites integrated the E2E or End to End Quality Control System. Vehicles have been through stringent inspections, MAF, stolen vehicle checks, odometer certification, WOF compliance, panel and paint when needed and grooming.

Note: This list was taken from AutoMedia eMagazine (May ’09 edition) and based on used vehicle registrations YTD (year to date).
General reviews were taken online from various customers who have posted their feedback on the vehicles. Image taken from

1. Subaru Legacy
General reviews: “Targeted at consumers who want a combination of safety, reliability, and interior comfort.”

2. Toyota Vitz
General reviews: “fun to drive. Pros- fuel economy; Cons- Nothing really.”

3. Honda Odyssey
General reviews: “Most drivers expect that by staying with the regular maintenance schedule, this minivan will run dependably for a very long time. It has excellent fuel efficiency, low emissions, and with the back seat folded down, tremendous cargo space.”

4. Toyota Estima
General reviews: “If your lifestyle demands an eight-seater vehicle but you can't bear the thought of driving something that looks like a van, then the Estima’s for you.”

5. Toyota Corolla
General reviews: “With comfortable roomy interior, smooth ride, good safety ratings and excellent fuel economy, the 2003-2008 Corolla is one of the top picks in a small family car category.”

6. Mazda Familia
General reviews: “Plus points are good reliability and build quality and a roomy, well equipped cabin. It's also pleasant to drive..”

7. Toyota Altezza
General reviews: “It's one of the better handling cars which was a pleasure to drive. A real driver's car; awesome steering feel and response.”

8. Subaru Impreza
General reviews: “..the WRX delivers adequate comfort with the best performance (handling, acceleration)..An excellent second hand buy for people looking for something a bit different.”

9. Mazda Atenza
General reviews: “Very comfortable ride. Very smooth and classic lines to the eye, looks interesting not drab like others.”

10. Nissan Primera
General reviews: ” Great performance for the class. Excellent reliability, performance and handling.”

Amalia Rose Aviles


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Society is wising up in terms of buying the right, economical and eco-friendly vehicles. A few years ago, more auto brands were “going green” and started producing more electric vehicles (EV’s) and hybrids. Motor shows showcased more improvisations of electric vehicles (EV’s) – even the fastest car on earth is now electric.

We will be seeing more of the EV’s since most governments are imposing tougher emission standards on car makers. Other than that, EV development is here to stay due to the fear of erratic gas prices.

Are you thinking of buying an EV? It would be advisable to weigh the pros and cons before you purchase. Here’s a brief look on those important points you should consider:


• COST – Big savings. EV’s just cost as much as gasoline and diesel vehicles when purchased but you save more in the long run; gasoline prices are higher than the price of electricity you need to charge overnight.

• EFFECT ON ENVIRONMENT – Environmentally safe. EV’s are very eco-friendly because they produce almost no emissions; unlike the gasoline and diesel vehicles.

• VERSATILITY/PERFORMANCE – Noise-free and easy. EV’s make a quiet ride and are fairly easy to operate.


• BATTERY- Expensive and not eco-friendly. Some batteries won’t last long before you have to recharge them. New batteries are expensive since they are not the ordinary lead-acid type. They are quite heavy and you’ll have a hard time disposing them since they’re not eco-friendly.

• SAFETY- Quite the average. Because EV’s are nearly silent, they become a hazard when people are not aware of the acceleration. We are used to hearing a speeding car pass by and pedestrians might be in danger. People who have driven an EV don’t feel safe because when they accelerate, they are not in total control. Make sure to ask whether the EV you are interested in has gone through any crash testing; they might not have the same degree of safety as the gas/diesel vehicles.

• PARTS & REPAIRS- Expensive and complicated. Parts for repairs are more pricy due to lower demand. There are only a few brands selling quality EV’s. You have to be a licensed electrician and licensed mechanic to work on them.

• EFFECT ON ENVIRONMENT – Not so eco-friendly. More EV’s mean more power plants; power plants are pollutants to the environment.

• VERSATILITY/PERFORMANCE -Low in versatility compared to diesel/gasoline cars. There is no total control when you accelerate. It starts out slow and the speed eventually increases unlike in gasoline/diesel cars where the accelerometer is very responsive.

The A-Z of Driving Overseas

Posted by site admin | 12:07 AM

Germany's Autobahn (motorway)- is one of the best places to be for fast and furious drivers. You can legally drive as fast as you wish. There is no general speed limit but only a recommended speed limit of 130 kph (81 mph). The same rule applies on French motorways but in Norway you’d have to slow down, where it’s just 90 kph (55 mph).

Make sure to bring breakdown cover before going on a cross country road trip. It could cost over £2000 for a stranded car and four passengers to be brought home from Southern Europe.

Company cars
Make sure to get permission, if you plan to drive the company car overseas. Bring the official letter from your employer authorizing you to take it with you abroad. If it’s a lease car, you’ll also need to secure a vehicle-on-hire certificate from the leasing company.

Driving license
It’s a legal requirement to carry your license when driving, unlike in the UK. You might need to get an International Driving Permit for other countries.

EU enlargement
Ten new states joined the European Union and make a perfect holiday driving destination. Be on the lookout for unfamiliar road rules. Speed limits vary on certain roads during certain seasons and winter tires must be fitted in snowing states.

Fuel can
In several European countries it’s illegal to be carrying a can of spare fuel in the boot. They’re also banned on car ferries or Le Shuttle, whether full or empty.

GB sticker
You don’t need a separate GB sticker when visiting other EU countries if your vehicle is fitted with the new-style euro plate. However, if the vehicle has the old number plate, the law requires a GB sticker close to your rear number plate. Towing trailers or caravans need another sticker as well.

Be careful not to honk your horn anywhere. Most places are annoyed with incessant honking and are introducing laws to stop unnecessary horn use, especially in town.

Italy is home to fast and furious drivers with major motorways of speed limits increased to (93 mph). It’s important to keep your headlamps on when driving in Italy.

When driving in France, a give-way-to-the-right rule applies. Motorists must give way to vehicles joining their road from the right even if their on the main road, unless signs indicate they have priority.

The outback could be very hazardous at night so avoid it. Collisions with kangaroos are common in Australia.

In Scandinavia, it’s a legal requirement to keep your head lamps on. This is the same reason why Volvos have their headlights on all the time.

Mobile phones
Many countries have laws that ban the use of mobile phones while driving. Mobile phones are a well-known necessity but also a fatal driving hazard.

Night driving
Make sure you’re not drowsy while driving at night. Research has shown that the greatest risk of falling asleep at the wheel is between midnight-6am and 2-4pm.
On the spot fines
French police are known to collect up to 375 Euros on fines. Be sure to familiarize yourself with the different road rules before setting off. This will save you the trip to the cash machine.

In France parking is allowed in one side of the road and is switched to the other side. This can be tricky, so better make sure you get the rules before trying anything. In Austria, motorists must leave sidelights on where street lights aren't lit - but must watch out for those streetlights that turn off at midnight.

Sometimes traffic lanes merge into one and in Germany the Reissverschluss or zipper law applies. This means that motorists on each lane must give way one at a time.

Rental cars
Before driving off with your rental, do a damage check. You could end up paying for that damage after using it. In the US, civil litigation is common and motorists need about $1m of Supplementary Liability Insurance cover.

When driving in Spain, make sure to keep a spare pair of spectacles in the car if you wear them. It not only makes you look smart, but it is required by law and applies to Switzerland as well.

Traffic lights
Red means stop and green means go. In America, however, motorists can make a right turn, after stopping to check if the road is clear.

Lane swapping is allowed on American freeways, so be very careful.
Drivers are allowed to overtake on the inside - a big “no-no” in most European countries.

In Austria or Switzerland, a vignette or motorway tax disc is required.
Don’t go without displaying it on your windscreen.

Warning triangle
In some countries you need one and some countries two (Spain and Turkey).
In most countries like France, carry a set of spare light bulbs too.

In America, where two or more cars stop at a cross-roads, the car that arrived first has right of way. If they both got there at the same time, the give-way-to-the-right rule applies

Young drivers
You can apply for a license in the UK at 17, but you can't in France and New Zealand till you're 18. However, for the first two years after passing your test, you’re not allowed to exceed 110 kph on the motorway.

Zebra Crossings
Drivers don't always stop for pedestrians at a zebra crossing in most countries.
Better be careful when you do, to avoid getting rear-ended by a local driver.