I’m going to let you in on a little secret: Public car auctions can be an excellent way to find a serious bargain on your new vehicle.
‘Online’ car auctions simplify the process even more. They give you the chance to bid on your favorite vehicles in your PJs and slippers. Instead of traveling to the auction site, which could be in another state entirely, bids can be placed from the comfort of your own home.
There are a plethora of auction houses that feature new, used and classic vehicles. There are some hidden gems, some recent additions and older sites that specialize in these types of auctions. But you’ll hear this same caveat time and time again, “Car auctions are a bad idea because you don’t get to inspect or test drive the vehicle!”
That may be so, but in many cases sites featuring online car auctions actually, do!
In the list below, we’ll go over four of the best online auction houses that specialize in automobile auctions.
4 of The Best Online Car Auction Sites (in no particular order)
SCA has over 160 locations around the U.S. Their inventory comes from a wide mixture of places – insurance companies, rental car companies, leasing companies and independent sellers.
The inventory is sweeping with over 300,000 vehicles and over a hundred weekly live auctions open to anyone.
The inventory doesn’t stop at cars. SCA regularly includes automobiles such as snowmobiles, RVs, motorcycles, and some watercrafts.
What separates SCA from the pack is its ability to provide customer service through email, phone and even ‘live chat’ with a representative. Representatives from SCA are nearly always available from Monday thru Friday, 6 am to 6 pm.
Copart was the first vehicle auction company with physical locations, which allowed buyers to submit bids over the internet. That was 1998. Now in 2016, Copart has certainly progressed. Copart has at least one physical location in nearly every state in the country. It even has locations in the U.K., Germany, Brazil, Spain, United Arab Emirates and Canada. Therefore, international bids are a norm for the long-running site.
Copart also uses a feature that they refer to as VB3 (Virtual Bidding – The 3rd Generation). Among many cool features, this technology allows users to do two very cool things.
1 ) Members actually don’t have to be online to bid. Before the auction begins, they can set a maximum bid price and Copart will automatically bid for you until it’s reached. This happens whether you’re logged in or not.
2 ) Through a ‘multi-auction’ dashboard, Copart users can participate in more than one auction at a time. So, if you’re outbid on one of your options, you can quickly bid on another before the auction is over.
3. eBay Motors
While eBay Motors (and eBay in general) isn’t as popular as it once was, with some experts blaming the new crop up of car sale start-ups for the decline, it nevertheless remains a reliable auction source. The site has also fallen victim to numerous reports over the years of fraudulent activity, scams and horror stories of users purchasing stolen vehicles.
Albeit, many of these issues are rare and eBay has always taken steps to address these problems.
Earlier in 2016, eBay acquired Cargigi, an auto industry technology company, with the goal of adding more functionality for dealers looking to sell.
Therefore, it seems clear eBay has no plans of scrapping this section of the site anytime soon. Well over a decade in business and millions of cars sold, eBay Motors is somewhat of the ‘old faithful’ when it comes to online car auction sites.
Arguably the best site on this list, www.bno.com is an excellent addition to the live online auction industry.
The site is actually the world’s first interactive, real-time, live streaming online marketplace. It offers something never before experienced in the auction industry: entertaining online auctions with real-time interactions between the auctioneer, seller, and buyer.
What really separates BNO from the pack is their unique Auto Buyer’s Protection Policy.
Buyers have 9 days from when the auction takes place, to view, visit, inspect AND test drive the vehicle. If for some reason, the description does not match the vehicle, the potential buyer will not have to complete the purchase. If there is an issue with the sale and it’s not completed, the potential buyer gets a full refund. No questions asked.
BNO also sources their vehicles from the inventory turnover of reputable dealers and the returned vehicles from leasing companies. They work with motivated dealerships and private owners who are eager to sell their vehicles quickly. Therefore, these dealers and owners are willing to take price cuts in exchange for quick sales.
This makes BNO’s starting bids unparalleled compared to the rest of the online auction biz.
These are some of the best car auction/bidding websites online.