Monti Regulation (BER EU 1400/2002 Law of 31.07.2002 amended on 27.05.2010 with the NEW BER EU 462/2010) regulates the repair, maintenance and supply of spare parts for motor vehicles. The law states that OE Equivalent Spare Parts (parts built by competitors which have the same specifications as the original) have the same quality as original spare parts.
VALIDITY AND PURPOSE
This Law applies to all member States of the European Union and it covers all motorized vehicles with more than three wheels. It is intended to offer customers a wider range of choice in terms of parts and price, hence allowing Garages/ Independent Vehicle Repairers to buy and fit non genuine spare parts at prices that can compete or offer savings over the Original Equipment ones which are supplied and fitted by *Main Dealerships. (This increases the level of competition within the marketplace itself).
* a Main Dealer is a business either owned or authorised by a Vehicle Manufacturer to sell, service and repair a particular Brand(s) of motor vehicle.
The purpose of this Regulation is to allow Independent Vehicle Repairers to compete with Main Dealers; whereby they can fit non genuine OE equivalent parts for repair or servicing of a vehicle, during the vehicles warranty period without nullifying/invalidating the terms of its warranty.
Prior to the introduction of this Regulation, Main Dealers would often insist that the vehicle ‘warranty’ would be invalid if non genuine parts were used in either servicing or repair. This promotes and ensures free and fair competition across the European Union, according to the rules defined in Article 18 of the EC Treaty and the Antitrust Authority.
The Regulation involves a range of subjects:
MANUFACTURER OBLIGATIONS AND QUALITY ASSURANCE
With this law, all customers have the opportunity to buy aftermarket parts to maintain and service their vehicle. It further preserves and protects the quality assurance (of the parts fitted) without legally affecting the Vehicle Manufactures warranty.
All periodical maintenance/Service schedules indicated within the VM’s Service Manual (including the first) can now be carried out at independent repairers.
Vehicle Manufacturers cannot in any way impose the use of their own spare parts (genuine OE) or instruct their Dealerships to advise customers that equivalent (non- genuine) parts are sub- standard in terms of quality and there for should not be used.
The consumer now has full freedom of choice regarding the purchase of original or equivalent spare parts. The decision to use equivalent spare parts does not invalidate the quality assurance (VM warranty), unless the maintenance work is not carried out incorrectly by the independent repairer.
With regard to the Regulation itself, it is necessary that all parties involved, have the same information. So, all independent garages/repairers, should have access to the same information which is made available to authorized repairers i.e. technical information, service procedures, technical publications (like catalogs), any specialised tools, technical assistance offered by phone or via the Internet and testing equipment including diagnostic settings and codes.
The VM’s have to provide independent repairers with all the information given and provided to authorized repairers, without adopting any discriminatory treatment or applying different and disadvantageous conditions.
“Failure to comply with this Regulation can result in cases being reported to the Antitrust Authority; if evidence is found that ‘anti competition’ regulations are being broken, then this body can then impose financial penalties against those VM’s/Authorised Repairers responsible.”