Hooniverse Asks: What’s the most ridiculous price you’ve seen for a simple car part?

There’s a company in S. Korea called Mohenic and they’re able to turn the first-gen Montero into a baby G-Wagen. The upgrades are upscale, and so is the price. I’ve purchased a new grille for my own Montero, which is very reasonably priced but that has left me curious about some of their other parts. I found this lovely key, for example, and the asking price is more than the grille I just mentioned. In fact, it’s about $375 based on a quick currency calculation between South Korean Won and the US Dollar.

There are other items that Mohenic sells too. Like a steering wheel for over a thousand bucks, a very expensive retro sound-styled audio setup, and more. For now, I’ll stick with the grille and merely admire that key. It does look nice, but I’m not dumping nearly $400 bucks to have it.

What are some examples of automotive parts or items that should be inexpensive, but aren’t? I think this key is a good starting point.

I’m not talking about things like Bugatti wheels or a Porsche splitter. We expect those to be expensive. Share the items you don’t expect to be costly. Sound off below.

20 Comments

  1. GM wanted over $900 for a new gas tank for my Trailblazer. Cracked filler necks were a known defect on Trailblazers, many were recalled to fix this. My particular VIN was not. It had a cracked filler neck. Didn’t really leak, but the tank couldn’t seal, so it wouldn’t pass emissions. I found a good junkyard tank for about $50. I asked if they would ship it, it was about 70 miles away. “No, but we can deliver it for $50.” SOLD! Passed emissions for the next couple of years with that tank.

  2. Mopar E body clock adjustment and trip odometer reset knobs and screws used to sell for pretty much the price of a used instrument cluster, because that was the only way to come across them. Now they are reproduced at much more reasonable prices, if you consider $100 to be reasonable for something with no moving parts that is smaller than the cap on a ballpoint pen.

    https://www.jimsautoparts.com/MS-8679-1.jpg

  3. Rear brake shield for my XV30 Camry. Super common in the US, no one has this part in Europe though – except for Toyota, who charge 527.70$ for a metal sheet with holes in it. Showed this to some car interested friends who all agreed this was about 500$ too expensive, and promised they’d find it at a normal price. They were all left shocked and surprised that they couldn’t find one. In the end, I didn’t need the brake shield for my tech inspection anyway and got away with paying an equally nosebleeding amount for a new parking brake instead.

  4. Rubber parts for BMWs. I need to replace most of them on my E28, and if I went OEM, I’d be out more than the original purchase price.

    1. I feel you there… did fresh door seals on my Benz. The OE seals were exponentially more expensive than the ones I got.

    2. To be fair, for a 30yo car NOS rubber is rubbish and OEM installed material is on its way out, too, so the prices of non-standardized parts are high for some kind of reason. I’ve replaced more $ in rubber and other gasket materials than in all other materials on my 944.

      1. The thing that bothers me most is that the previous owner had this thing for 200,000 miles, spent upwards of $30,000 on maintenance, and never touched any of the rubber stuff besides the coolant hoses.

  5. Toyota once asked $900 for the internal electric window parts for my wife’s Corolla. Since the cable had only snapped and pulled out of its plastic retaining clip, I made a new retainer out of a plate of metal with a slot cut out for the cable, and the local pushbike shop gave me a thingy they use on the end of brake cables (I forget what it was called). The cost of repair was precisely $0. I offered to pay the pushbike shop, even told them that they’d just saved me nine hundred bucks, but they still wouldn’t hear of it.

  6. $55 USD for a green plastic gear a little bigger than the diameter of a no. 2 pencil necessary for the repair of the passenger seat back of my BMW 328I. Since the seat back failed in full recline the problem couldn’t be ignored. Then the Independent BMW shop charged me $450 to pull the seat and install the gear. I still drive BMW’s but I don’t own them and I never, ever, drive one that isn’t under factory warranty. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/59ed7649cd987a92604eb0dba8831f2f657481d48f9ab2f6cc0779c52c4757f7.jpg

  7. Toyota once asked $900 for the internal electric window parts for my wife’s Corolla. Since the cable had only snapped and pulled out of its plastic retaining clip, I made a new retainer out of a plate of metal with a slot cut out for the cable, and the local pushbike shop gave me a thingy they use on the end of brake cables (I forget what it was called). The cost of repair was precisely $0. I offered to pay the pushbike shop, even told them that they’d just saved me nine hundred bucks, but they still wouldn’t hear of it.

  8. Japanese stuff from the 80s/90s that’s not an MX5/Miata can be surprisingly pricey. In some cases, it’s probably easier to get bits for a 60s MGB. A lot of the japanese manufacturers tend not to invest much in “heritage” parts supply, so if you need something beyond the routine mechanical, like trim parts, they can be surprisingly pricey and I’m not talking some obscure JDM only unicorn. Body/trim/lighting parts for AE86s and AW11 MR2s for example can be ridiculous.

    1. I seem to remember hearing that while Soichiro Honda was still alive, he insisted on keeping parts available for all Honda cars. Parts for S800s were still available in the 1990s.

      1. Honda motorcycle parts for vintage bikes were supported much better than any of their compatriots, well into the early ‘00s. I’m not sure that’s still the case.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

The maximum upload file size: 64 MB. You can upload: image, audio, video. Links to YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and other services inserted in the comment text will be automatically embedded. Drop files here