Replacement Bulbs for Headlights

Replacement Headlight Bulbs


A summary of an article in the January 2006 Consumer Reports


Tested 5 premium bulbs:

     APC Plasma Ultra White

     GE Nighthawk

     Phillips Crystal Vision

     Sylvania SilverStar

     Wagner Tru-Vue

Bulbs priced $26-40 per pair, 2 to 3 times normal replacement bulbs.

3 test vehicles used (Toyota, Chrysler, Honda)

Of 15 tests for distance in detecting a dark object using a human subject in the car, only one bulb in one car improved low-beam sight distance, the other 14 were the same or worse. And the one that did performed worse than OE in another car.

Of 15 tests for increased brightness using meters, “no one bulb scored consistently better than OE”.

Glare to oncoming drivers was no worse than OE (these were all advertised as "Street Legal per DOT".

Some drivers subjectively preferred the “whiter” light the legal premium bulbs gave.

For more details of the tests, see the Consumer Reports web site.

These results may not reflect more recently designed bulbs.

Don't use bulbs that use more wattage than the factory bulbs as they will burn the interior of the lens and you'll have to buy the whole headlight assembly.

I have used Silver Stars and didn’t notice a significant difference from stock.

If you want a significant improvement at a large cost, Litronics kits are available from your dealer or from Porsche Dismantelers.