When no-hassle matters more than money

  03 November 2014

Sold a used car lately? Of course you have. Allow me to rephrase my question: what I mean is, have you done as some of your customers do – draft an advertisement, take pictures and then post them on Auto Trader or eBay?

Next time that a son, daughter or other relative has a vehicle they no longer wish to own, I’d recommend that you take on the task of selling it privately. It will, I promise, give you fresh insight into how car ownership is for many of those who come to you to buy.

A minority enjoy selling their own car; but most don’t. Spend any time on car enthusiast forums and you’ll find tales recounted, both of dream sales at the asking price but also of timewasters, insultingly low offers and endless hassle.

Small wonder then that webuyanycar.com (WBAC) is the success that it is. Consumer organisation Which? reports that its prices are low but, judging from online reviews elsewhere, it’s a well-run set up that motorists are content to use because it promises a guaranteed sale on the day.

This far, WBAC has had the market pretty much to itself (barring a sprinkle of small-scale rivals). So it is interesting that Pendragon is rolling out its Sell Your Car service and offers it currently at 29 Evans Halshaw outlets. More are on the way and Evans Halshaw’s promise to customers that it will beat any WBAC offer is powerful. Competition is good and we wish them well.

However, as it is they miss a major trick. Where WBAC gives a price online once in return for answering a few quick questions (taking seconds), Evans Halshaw asks sellers to visit the dealership before a figure is quoted.

Until this is corrected, their offer has limited appeal.

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