I think I once read/heard somewhere that vehicle manufacturers have to stock parts or have parts available for vehicles that have produced for at least 3 years after the end of production?

Is this true? If it is true please can you provide evidence for this? Also, is the end of the production for the model of the vehicle or for the generation of the vehicle?

I am asking this question in the UK.

  • 3 days? Or weeks?
    – Solar Mike
    Jun 18, 2019 at 13:04
  • @SolarMike My bad, I meant 3 years!
    – JackU
    Jun 18, 2019 at 13:05
  • I'm not sure if they have to, but it would be bad business not to, A company wouldn't last long if a significant percentage of their cars were unusable after a few years through lack of spare parts
    – Dave Smith
    Jun 18, 2019 at 13:47

1 Answer 1


I'd always thought there was some directive that stated this but apparently it's an urban myth, which makes sense because how would you ever enforce it were a manufacturer to pull out of a market such as Lancia in the early nineties or collapse like Saab did in early 2012.

There is some rumour of some EU based directive that suggests parts supply for ten years that isn't really enforceable but apparently that's just a rumour too.

Bear in mind that most motor manufacturers don't make the majority of their parts themselves but outsource manufacturing to companies such as Lucas, Bosch, Mann, Borg Warner, etc... Most of these manufacturers continue to make product available to both the dealership network and motorfactors for some years so it's incredibly rare that you'll find a mass-produced mainstream vehicle where spares aren't available from somewhere within the first few years of it's manufacture.

If there is a specific part you're struggling to obtain, consider getting in touch with the owners club for that vehicle as these organisations almost always will be able to help. Out of interest, what vehicle do you have and what part are you struggling to replace?

  • I did remember a lecture on car law many moons ago where it was pointed out, but may have been superceded - nice parts term that...
    – Solar Mike
    Jun 18, 2019 at 15:04
  • Owners club is a good shout. I'm trying to replace the rear brake back plate (or dust shields as I've always known them) on a 2012 Kia Rio.
    – JackU
    Jun 18, 2019 at 15:27
  • Would need to know more info about the car but they certainly appear to be available; autodoc.co.uk/car-parts/brake-disc-back-plate-15099/kia/rio Jun 18, 2019 at 15:55

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