Don't Buy Fake Shit – A Close Look at a Fake
Cusco USA Press Release
In this day and age, counterfeit products plague the aftermarket automotive industry to the extent of even bringing down large corporations. There are many copycats out there who ripoff original product designs and market them for pure profit, which in simplicity is no different from theft at a whole new level. Moreover, the worst is when the product is copied exactly right down to the brand logo, packaging, instruction forms, and sold to the unknowing consumer as the real deal.
The counterfeit producers utilize such commerce sites as eBay and even have websites of their own, selling the items well below the manufacturer's suggested retail pricing. Here we have an example of a well constructed knock-off CUSCO oil catch can.
|Counterfeit CUSCO Oil Catch Can exactly the way it's shipped to your door. Everything seen here is replicated, even the sticker.
Since CUSCO products are designed and manufactured in Japan, it is fairly easy to tell the difference between an item that had been constructed in a different country. The fake oil catch can kit comes with the contents shown above, the biggest visible difference is the cardboard that can be seen through the clear film, whereas on the real unit, the oil catch can is shown for product display.
Let's take a better look at the packaging, specifically the discrepancies of the Japanese text that is printed on the box.
|Various Japanese character errors that can be easily distinguished by a Japanese speaker. There are speculations of the origin of the individual responsible for these copies, indicated in the font encoding/input used in their language. The Japanese keyboard input system is incapable of producing these characters.
Speaking more specifically, the font system utilized when making the counterfeit good gives away the fact that the packaging has also been copied. A simple scan and print would have compromised the quality of the print, so an attempt to recreate the entire layout was performed. Simple grammatical and spelling errors, as well as the usage of the wrong Japanese kanji characters, are not noticed by non-Japanese speakers and are close enough for the copycats to get away with.
The canister also shows a great deal of differences.
|REAL: Notice the “Made in Japan” scribe as well as the polished finish.
|FAKE: Counterfit CUSCO Catch Can. Notice the overdone chrome finish?
The comparison of the above two photographs clearly shows the fake unit has the CUSCO logo flipped upside down. The real product is finished by buff polishing and the fake unit is chrome. Although it's not easy to tell, the real unit has more of a hand-crafted quality, since each one being made individually as opposed to being manufactured in large volumes.