It’s probably a tale as old as time itself. Ever since the invention of things, people have always tried to make other things that are as similar as the original things, but a lot cheaper. While this practice is not bad in itself, it gets bad when you make fake products and copy the branding of the originals.
It hits particularly hard in two areas. Firstly, the counterfeit product, which has nothing to do whatsoever with the original, has the potential to erode the brand equity of the real deal. Secondly, unauthorized use of a brand name, logo, or even proprietary patented design is basically stealing, so yeah. Fake stuff is nothing new in the motorcycling world. Everything from aftermarket exhausts, crash protection, equipment, and yes, even entire motorcycles themselves have all fallen victim to counterfeits—most of which coming from a certain country in the East.
The latest mainstream manufacturer to intensify efforts against cracking down on counterfeit products is none other than Brembo. The company is one of the most prestigious brands in the OEM and aftermarket brakes business, and has had its fair share of imitations over the years. To address this, Brembo is ensuring that customers get nothing but genuine, verified Brembo products via a QR code system. The company has developed an app called Brembo Check, allowing you to scan a QR code present on the product, and counter check it with Brembo’s database of products.
The authenticity of the product is likewise validated thanks to its serial number—an attribute unique to each individual piece. But what if the fakes get so good that they imitate the QR code, too? Well, this is where the unique serial number as previously mentioned comes into play. Additionally, the QR code on genuine Brembo products can’t simply be removed and slapped on to a different product. Attempting to remove the QR code will ultimately destroy it, rendering the digital security feature useless.
Remember, authentic Brembo products will have their QR code placed onto the caliper, rotor, or master cylinder itself. If the QR code is given to you separately, or on a different set of documents, it’s most likely fake. Of course, you can always get in touch directly with Brembo should you have any questions concerning the legitimacy of a certain product. With the technology for imitating high-end products accelerating rapidly, it’s always best to be sure that you’re getting nothing but the real deal, especially when it comes to something as vital as your brakes.