BMW Headlight Buyer's Guide
- BMW is one of the best-selling premium car brands in the US. To keep up with the demand for their vehicles, they rely on over 100 parts companies in their supplier network.
- While shopping for a replacement headlight, you may have heard of the terms OEM and OE replacement,OEM parts are components manufactured by one of the companies that belong to BMW’s official supplier network whileOE replacement parts are components manufactured by any other parts maker that is not an official BMW OEM.
- OE replacement BMW headlights can be just as good, if not even better than OEM parts. This is because aftermarket parts suppliers typically reverse-engineer genuine parts while designing their own versions.
- The price, design, and fit of BMW headlights will vary depending on the model year and generation. The cost of a replacement BMW headlight assembly range anywhere between $20 to over $3,000.
BMW is undoubtedly one of the largest and most successful luxury car makers in the world. The brand is part of the German ‘Big Three’ which includes automakers such as Mercedes Benz and Audi. Beyond Europe, the Bavarian automaker has also proven its strong position in the American market, becoming the best-selling premium brand in the US five times since 2011.
Many consider the BMW as the epitome of what a car should be - luxurious, sporty, dependable and safe. It also provides great driving experience, truckloads of fun factor and a great design. BMW engineers have given time in providing it the best in all aspects, including the headlights.
Headlights are provided in every vehicle to ensure visibility in darkness and on dim and foggy days to ensure road safety. Drivers must be able to see what is in front of them, as well as being aware of the other vehicles with their headlights on.
Headlights come in pairs and are found in the front of the car. Many headlights used nowadays are the sealed beam type; this means that the reflector, lens array on the front, as well as bulb, are compressed into one unit that must be replaced together. Usually, the parking lights and signal light can be found with the headlights. They are cast into one set consisting of multiple bulbs and reflectors. Colors are provided to designate which light is used and for what purpose.
Headlights can be switched between two modes or configurations: low beams and high beams. High beams radiate more light at a higher angle, letting the driver have a wider and longer range of visibility, but this may result in potentially blinding drivers of approaching vehicles.
Who Manufactures Genuine BMW Headlights?
Like other vehicle manufacturers, BMW relies on a supplier network of over 100 parts companies. These suppliers are either Germany-based or subsidiaries of these companies. HELLA is one such example of BMW’s original equipment manufacturers (OEM). They are a lighting and electronics company that provides the LED technology for BMW headlights.
What’s the Difference Between OEM and OE Replacement BMW Headlights?
While shopping for a replacement headlight, you may have heard of the terms OEM parts and OE replacement parts. While these two categories are both functional equipment, they have minor differences that you should be aware of.
OEM or Original Equipment Manufacturer
OEM parts are components manufactured by one of the companies that belong to BMW’s official supplier network. So when we talk about OEM BMW headlights, we’re referring to assemblies made by HELLA and BMW’s other subsidiaries.
OE Replacement or Aftermarket Parts
OE replacement parts are components manufactured by any other parts maker that is not an official BMW OEM. These parts may carry a different style or design than the genuine part but when compared, OEM and OE replacement parts are functionally equivalent.
Is an Aftermarket BMW Headlight Assembly as Good as an OEM?
OE replacement BMW headlights can be just as good, if not even better than OEM parts. This is because aftermarket parts suppliers typically reverse-engineer genuine parts while designing their own versions. This allows them to identify any flaws or weaknesses that can be corrected in the OE replacement assembly.
Like any other purchase, the quality of OE replacement headlights will depend on who the manufacturer is and where you’re buying it from. CarParts.com has a strict vetting process that ensures that every item in our inventory is only of the best quality.
How Much is a BMW Headlight?
The price, design, and fit of BMW headlights will vary depending on the model year and generation. The cost of a replacement BMW headlight assembly ranges anywhere between $20 to over $3,000. These are sold individually, in sets of two, or as part of a kit.
Use our website’s search tab to find the right BMW headlight replacement for your vehicle. Browse through our vast selection of BMW headlight bulbs and assemblies. Simply plug in your car’s year, make, and model to choose from all compatible parts.