Would you like to buy or sell a vehicle at online car auctions in the United States? If so, you’re not alone as nearly every step of the new, used, and salvage car buying and selling experience can be completed online.
Shopping for a used car online is a great alternative to visiting a car dealer in person, especially with the use of ultra-convenient auto auction shipping services.
Did you know that a majority of dealerships that are selling relatively new cars at good prices are probably purchasing them from the country’s biggest car auction houses?
Many individual consumers believe that the majority of used car inventory is supplied by car dealerships and private parties; however, these same car dealers and private sellers source much of their vehicle inventory directly from online car auction marketplaces.
Would you like to learn which car auction sites are worth visiting before purchasing or selling your next car?
This article will describe the different vehicle types that can be purchased from an online car auction, in addition to the 12 best online car auction sites in 2023.
Which Kind of Vehicles Are Found on Online Car Auction Sites?
Online car auction sites offer almost every type of vehicle, including salvage cars, trade-in cars, repossessed vehicles, and totaled cars.
- A salvage vehicle is usually a vehicle that has been declared a total loss by an insurance company due to its high maintenance costs.
- Dealerships that are unable to sell their inventory locally will send their cars to auctions for quick cash. Therefore, you can get fantastic deals on brand-new and used vehicles.
- Repossessed cars from banks are next in quality. Banks want to sell these vehicles to recover some of their losses.
These vehicles are often in excellent condition, which is ideal for a used car dealership.
- Rent-a-car companies also sell their vehicles at auctions once they reach a certain mileage. Due to their high level of maintenance, these cars can also be great deals.
Remember: Consider your budget before bidding. Auction sites have policies on minimum bids, and any fees attached to the auction.
12 Best Online Car Auction Sites in the USA
1. eBay Motors
eBay Motors (The leader in online car auctions) offers new and used vehicles as well as parts for fixing, updating, and maintaining your existing vehicle. Browsing through vehicles, categories of products, events, and brands of cars, motorcycles, pickup trucks, and SUVs is straightforward.
Private sellers and automotive dealerships are the two types of sellers here. eBay Motors is immediately available to registered users of the traditional eBay platform. Simply go to eBay Motors to find a vehicle of your choice, then bid accordingly. The rules for bidding on eBay Motors are the same as those for traditional eBay, and no auction fee is charged.
eBay Motors does not offer the same types of deals found on other online auction sites. Buyers can still find some affordable vehicles here, as well as parts cars. However, finding a “great deal” on eBay has become harder as more people have learned to bid and wait until the very last second to win. This can result in a significant price increase.
Read Later: Does eBay Ship Cars?
With operations in 11 countries, Copart Auto Auctions is one of the largest car auction houses in the world. This company was founded in 1982, sells over 3 million vehicles a year, and maintains a reputable site.
When you need a repossessed, vandalized, clean title or salvage car, then Copart is the online auction site you should use. This site offers cars, trucks, classic cars, motorcycles, industrial vehicles, and more.
Most of Copart’s vehicles come from insurance companies, financial institutions, and banks. In addition, Copart directs various marketing arms to buy vehicles from the public for resale.
There are no minimum bids or reserves, so you only have to bid what you feel comfortable with. Additionally, a mobile app allows you to place bids wherever you are. As an added convenience, you can bid on a vehicle before the auction starts.
You must have a full dealer’s license to participate in Copart’s auctions.
Pro Tip: We recommend reading this Copart review before using this site for your next purchase.
IAAI is an online auto auction hosted by Insurance Auto Auctions. The company was founded in 1982, so they have a long history of auctioning cars.
IAAI sells drivable vehicles, lightly damaged vehicles, stolen recovered vehicles, parts vehicles, donated vehicles, and stolen vehicles to over 190 auction centers across the country by combining live auctions and live internet bidding.
For experienced bidders, Insurance Auto Auction Incorporated is the best online auction. The IAAI makes it easy to find a high-quality vehicle for both licensed dealers and non-licensed buyers.
Non-licensed individuals can bid on vehicles through IAAI’s broker services. Public buyers without a license will be charged $200 a year for IAAI’s service. Public auctions and public inventories are the only types of auctions where you can place a bid, so you might miss out on some high-end vehicles that are only available to dealers.
IAAI offers flexible payment options and brokers to assist with car shipping.
Bidding activity can be tracked. Monitor the status of the vehicle. Make smarter sales decisions by leveraging data.
Related Article: Is AAA the Best Option for Long-Distance Towing?
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4. Auto Auction Mall
If you are searching for a one-stop shop with an impressive array of vehicle options, we strongly suggest you check out Auto Auction Mall. They have the LARGEST database of salvage, pre-owned, and used cars. Motorsport enthusiasts can find virtually any type of vehicle they desire in these online car auctions.
Auto Auction Mall allows people without dealer licenses to bid on vehicles, saving you thousands off the retail price of your vehicle. Many of these auctions list vehicles at wholesale prices, which can save you thousands of dollars.
A security deposit of 10% of the amount you wish to spend is required at Auto Auction Mall. However, Auto Auction Mall’s membership is free, and registration is easy. After winning an auction, you’ll be required to pay Auto Auction Mall a $299 fee.
Auto Auction Mall is unique in that they offer financing options to help you buy the vehicles you want. Certain offers have no down payment and super-low interest rates. You can even apply for financing without hurting your credit score. You’ll be glad to know that Auto Auction Mall offers customer support that will help you throughout the bidding process.
ADESA connects buyers with many different car auctions online around the country and the world. Their offerings are primarily dealer consignments, off-lease vehicles, fleet vehicles, and rentals; while there is no formal marketplace for salvaged vehicles, they do appear in the listings occasionally.
To join, you must be a licensed dealer. Members also have access to other automotive remarketing services, including title services, marshaling, financing, transportation, and inspections.
ADESA serves manufacturers, banks, rental companies, fleet companies, and insurance companies. In addition to having the largest selection of low-mileage, one-owner cars, ADESA is good at marketing older and high-mileage vehicles. Motorcycles, RVs, boats, and more can be found at their nationwide vehicle auctions.
AutoBidMaster‘s online auto auctions have a wide range of repairable cars, trucks, and SUVs available for sale to the general public and businesses at very affordable prices.
AutoBidMaster is a registered broker with Copart. Upon joining AutoBidMaster, you’ll also be able to access Copart’s inventory. The registration process is free and takes less than 30 seconds, so you have nothing to lose.
You can even browse their inventory of over 173,597 cars without a dealer’s license, including models from Honda, Toyota, Ford, Chevrolet, BMW, Hyundai, Volkswagen, Volvo, Nissan, and Mercedes-Benz.
AutoBidMaster online auto auctions provide access to over 150,000 new vehicles in their stock for daily and weekly auto auctions, so you can probably find a new car. Occasionally, you can even find motorcycles and quad bikes there!
It doesn’t matter if you are buying an automobile for personal use or business use; their experts can assist you throughout the entire car-buying process in English, Spanish, Russian, Arabic, and French.
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7. Cars and Bids
The best place to buy and sell modern enthusiast cars online is Cars & Bids, and that means pretty much anything cool from the 1980s, 1990s, 2000s, 2010s, or 2020s.
This is the most user-friendly online automotive marketplace, with easy sorting and searching. Simplified auctions tell you everything you need to know about each vehicle.
There is no charge for sellers to list, and buyer fees are just 4.5%, with a minimum of $225 and a maximum of $4,500 – far below other auction houses and enthusiast car auction websites.
Cars & Bids provides vehicle history reports free of charge for every vehicle listed, so they do not ask sellers to pay for their own.
In contrast to other car auctions, online that can take weeks or even months before your car is listed and available to buyers, Cars & Bids will list your car quickly – and will even work with you on the timing of the auction.
Cars & Bids may be a relative newcomer, but they are definitely a contender. With lots of social media followers, they seem to be fairly easy to buy and sell used cars. Worth a shot!
Recommended: If you would like more information about cars and bids, please visit our car and bids reviews page.
8. Capital Auto Auction
Capital Auto Auction is a public car auction based in the District of Columbia that specializes in live online car auctions. They offer a variety of vehicles for every need and budget, including family minivans, sports cars, boats, campers, and motorcycles.
Capital Auto Auction holds three large live automobile auctions every week at its four locations on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays.
Hundreds of cars can be purchased for less than $1,000 at their auctions. The selection of used cars changes from week to week, but the prices are always great for quality, clean vehicles.
Capital Auto Auction is free to browse if you register. However, a fee will be charged when you place a bid. Fees are based on the selling price of the vehicle. You can see the fees at their auctions online once you have logged in. In order to bid in the auction, you must have a valid U.S. driver’s license and be over 18.
9. A Better Bid
We have seen that A Better Bid has about 100,000 cars in its inventory, which is lower than some of the other options, but they keep adding new vehicles every day.
Their inventory includes electric cars, sedans, salvage title cars, ATVs, motorcycles, and many more. You do not need a dealer license to bid here. With A Better Bid’s website, you can easily identify only vehicles with clean titles. Even though the site also offers used and salvaged vehicles, clean titles are separated for easy access.
You can browse A Better Bid for free if you register. However, a fixed transaction fee of $250 will be charged, plus applicable fees determined after your purchase. The Premium Membership is $150 a year but offers a discounted transaction fee and five free vehicle history reports.
10. ACV Auctions
ACV Auctions is the leading digital wholesale vehicle marketplace in America, bringing unparalleled transparency and trust to the process of buying and selling used cars, trucks, and SUVs.
ACV allows dealers to buy and sell vehicles anywhere, conveniently and quickly, by selling cars and trucks in a 20-minute digital auction.
You can even see the undercarriage of a car in high definition with a virtual lift. That way, you can hear a clear audio clip of a running engine. This recording proves even better and provides more information than standing next to the vehicle and hearing it revved up a few times.
ACV Auctions’ app allows car titles to be transferred seamlessly. Additionally, the company provides a 10-day arbitration guarantee to all buyers. You can pay a little extra if you would like 20 or 30 days of protection.
ACV Auctions offers free sign-up and low buy fees. A secure transaction platform will also give you peace of mind.
Recently, they added the True360 Report, an unbiased third-party inspection that is linked to Autocheck and CARFAX in real time. The report provides dealers and their customers with a complete history of cars involved in accidents.
Read Also: Classic versus Antique versus Vintage Cars
11. Salvage Bid
Salvage Bid is a large online auction marketplace dedicated to used, salvaged, and repairable vehicles.
Every day, the platform offers more than 200,000 salvage & repairable vehicles for sale, allowing you to buy and sell vehicles with clean and salvage titles without the need for a dealer’s license.
Using Salvagebid, you have the opportunity to bid or buy used and salvaged cars in the USA sold by top brands such as BMW, Audi, Mercedes, and many others.
This site offers extremely affordable cars.
The Salvage Bid program offers a free membership that allows you to bid only in preliminary bids. In addition, you are only allowed to purchase one vehicle under the free plan. By paying $200 a year, you can access every auction and feature on the website.
12. ACV Auctions
ACV Auctions is the nation’s largest dealer-to-dealer online automotive marketplace. They achieve this by combining the best technology and people in the world.
ACV Auctions offer dealers a portable, low-cost, risk-free way to sell used vehicles, providing tremendous value: ACV handles virtually all the work.
You simply tell them which vehicles you want to sell (with VIN, the reserve price, and other pertinent information) and ACV will prepare a top-of-the-line condition report, take dozens of photos, and hold the live, 20-minute auction.
Every time a new vehicle is added, thousands of potential buyers will be notified. ACV provides financing and transportation services to dealers who buy through their platform.
Bottom Line of 12 Best Online Car Auction Sites in 2023
Many other online car auction sites include major auction houses in addition to these ten. However, keep in mind that not all of them are safe for you to use. You should verify the accuracy of any site prior to bidding, as not all are worth your time.
Many online car auction sites only sell to dealers, so it is recommended that you use a site that’s open to all customers or work with a third-party middleman to get your bids through the site. These 12 auto auction sites are among the best on the market, with Copart topping the list for consumers and dealers abroad.
Get in Touch!
Whether you are buying or selling a car at an online vehicle auction site. Your vehicle will need to be shipped to or from your doorstep by someone who understands your needs.
AutoStar Transport Express has been shipping cars to and from online car auctions in the United States for over 15 years. Get in touch today at 888-802-8250 for more information about vehicle transport services and car shipping costs.
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Listen to the top car auction websites listed in the audio:
I’ve been using a few of these car auction websites and they’re all pretty good. I like the one that has the most up-to-date listings and the one that has the most user feedback.
Car auctions can really give you the best price for your well-cared car. The sites you have mentioned are the best. no doubt. You have done your research work well.
If you are really an old car enthusiast, let me suggest you most user-friendly online automotive marketplace, Cars and Bids. Oh my god! there is no match for the cars, they have. They have a variety of 90s cars that are auctioned for the public, also it’s free to list your car, who else does offer this in the market these days? If you would ask me, I would always stick to Cars and Bids for buying the auctioned cars.
Hey Mason, Thanks for sharing your experience with us. We hope that you will consider us for your car transport in the upcoming future.
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