My Volkswagen Polo with disastrous aftermarket headlights

After spending Rs 37,000, the headlights are nowhere close to the stock version, let alone be better.

BHPian Gorkey recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

I own a simple Polo 1.2 MPI which was launched in the SR Edition back when I was a kid. SR stood for Sports Pacer. Back then, I had no knowledge about what a car actually was and to date, that remains the same. I try to learn from Team-BHP, but that's where everything ends. I ordered some absolutely dazzling aftermarket headlights after I passed my supplementary exams for final MBBS. Got them today. The light is nowhere close to my stock 2013 polo headlights and the right indicator function is picking up a notch. Skipping things. The only thing I am crying about after spending Rs 37K on aftermarket headlights, I am seriously devastated. The seller in Pune is a good guy. I am not sure if I should blame the seller, but I seriously need your guys to help. Fogging issues happened within 2 hours of usage. Visibility in both high and low beams is poor. Poor in the sense, halogen is better. I'll literally be crying in a week if this doesn't get resolved. I'm attaching pictures and everything. Please help me.

The lights are most focused towards the left with a wide big black blank spot between the right and the left beam. Cannot see a thing. Will post a video if anyone else needs to see this. I've had friends having aftermarket headlights in their polo. No one else had this experience.

Here's what BHPian vishy76 had to say on the matter:

One needs to understand that bi-xenons and LED headlights aren't cheap to make. So if an aftermarket seller is selling brand new ones at even half the price of VW OEs (these are 1/3rd the price IIRC), it's obvious there has been a compromise somewhere.

Coming to the compromises, this is what I have generally observed with Taiwanese or Chinese aftermarket headlamp clusters:

  • Poor lens quality. Lens fade after only a year or two of usage is a common sight in these (OE headlamp lenses last 2-3x that easily)
  • Quality of electronic components inside isn't up to the mark. Features like dynamic turn indicators don't work seamlessly with the rest of the car
  • The alignment of the beams is off like in your case leading to severe functional deficiencies
  • Can cause bulb out errors on the MFD or CANBUS errors

In the end, all I will say is caveat emptor. Don't trust any seller out there no matter how reputed he is. Rely solely on real-life reviews and do your research based on this. Ask owners how the product is holding up, its performance and the after-sales support (if any). Only then buy something like this.

Here's what BHPian Indian2003 had to say on the matter:

Whatever car you drive, you will never get daylight with headlights. I am willing to bet that most swaps to aftermarket lights are for the looks.

There is no point fitting better bulbs and headlights when your wiring can't deliver the power. People just buy new lamps and bulbs thinking they will get better lights that will make a difference.

Fitting fancy names like Nightvision Laser and Racing Vision are all a waste of money. They give a third of life and about 5-15% better lights than the standard bulbs. The only thing laser about the Nightvision Laser is that they use lasers to etch the name on the bulb.

The claimed 150% better lights are not compared with halogen bulbs of today but the old incandescent bulbs of the 60s. In those days car lights looked like candlelights.

The Osram Original gives a lifespan of 600 hours while the Nightbreaker Laser gives only 150 hours and 15% better lights at double the price if there was no voltage drop. The blue colour on the bulbs costs money.

Check out BHPian comments for more insights and information.

Got BHP?