If you’re in the market for a new or used car, the process has never been easier. Forget about spending your entire weekend perusing countless vehicles and haggling with pushy salespeople. If you want to search for the exact vehicle of your choice and avoid the stress of a dealership, buying a car online might be right for you. Thanks to the ease of the internet, it is now possible to find your dream car. You are no longer limited to your local inventory and you have the ability to expand your search anywhere in the country. That makes it easy to find the right car at the right price. So, which car-buying sites should you turn to as you begin shopping for your new car? We’ve compiled a list of the top 25 best online car buying sites.
Carvana has become increasingly popular in recent years thanks to the convenience of a complete online car buying experience. There are no physical dealerships, meaning no haggling and better prices. They also offer certified cars that come with a 100-day/4,189 mile “Worry Free Guarantee.” You also have 7 days to test drive your car and return it if you are not satisfied.
AutoTrader is a great online source if you are looking for a new or used vehicle. It’s user friendly search engine allows you to search for an exact make and model within your budget. You also have the option for a cash offer or trade-in on eligible cars.
Joydrive offers a complete hassle-free online car buying experience for both new and pre-owned vehicles. They provide you with a network of dealers along with a variety of vehicles to choose from. You get a 5-day trial along with an in-depth background check on every vehicle.
If you still want to do a little research to find the right vehicle for you, CarsDirect is a great resource. They offer buying guides, expert analysis on different cars, and they have an abundance of tools to help you make an informed decision.
Edmunds is a trusted online car buying source that offers side-by-side comparisons of different vehicles as well as research tools and buying guides. They connect you with dealers around the country to find the perfect vehicle at the right price.
Vroom specializes in pre-owned vehicles with low mileage and each one has to pass a rigorous 126-point inspection. Each vehicle also comes equipped with a protection plan for additional peace of mind. What’s more? Vroom offers free nationwide shipping to your door along with a 7-day or 250 mile test drive so you can be sure this is the car for you.
Cars.com has been around for nearly two decades and makes it easy for consumers to purchase new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles. It’s simple and easy navigation tool makes it a great choice for consumers new to online car shopping.
8. Kelley Blue Book
Kelley Blue Book has been a reliable source for car pricing since 1926. You can use it’s car estimates to find a fair price for your trade-in as well as researching the price of a new or used car. Now, you can even use the site to search local dealers and private sellers to find your perfect car.
Hemmings is the ideal choice for consumers looking to purchase a specific classic car or car part. This site is a classic car collector’s dream, offering a unique selection of antique and classic cars and parts ranging from the 1930’s to the 1980’s.
Autolist is a great resource for browsing on the go. It has a great user-friendly app that accompanies it’s website which allows you to quickly and easily scour the database for a specific make, model, and price.
Most people are familiar with Craigslist but they may not be familiar with its variety of great car listings. It’s a great site for searching through a variety of used cars offered by dealers and private sellers.
12. Facebook Marketplace
If you are familiar with Facebook you might enjoy car shopping through Facebook Marketplace. It is a great place for people to buy and sell used cars. Since you are dealing with private sellers, you can also save a great deal of money by cutting out the middleman.
13. Car Gurus
Car Gurus is an online car buying site for new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles. Their goal is to provide a transparent automotive marketplace where shoppers get access to a variety of top-rated dealers. They have all the tools needed to guide you through the entire car buying process.
14. Auto Tempest
This is your one stop shop for online car buying. Much like the popular travel websites Expedia and Travelocity, Auto Tempest searches multiple different websites at once for your desired criteria. You can view results from a variety of sites including Auto Trader, ebay Motors, Craigslist, Cars.com, and Cars Direct all in one place.
15. eBay Motors
You are probably familiar with the traditional eBay, but this site is dedicated solely to online car shopping. It is similar to Craigslist in the sense that you are buying from private sellers, but unlike Craigslist you have access to seller reviews and buyer protection if you are unhappy with your vehicle.
This online car buying site allows you to purchase a vehicle from a private seller at a reasonable price. You also get added assurances like quality inspections and secured payment.
CarSoup has a convenient search tool that allows you to search by make, model, body style, budget and more. If you are looking to trade-in your current vehicle, they also provide a way for you to sell your vehicle through the site. In addition, they offer a variety of great buying and selling tools as well as financing help.
If price comparison is important to you then TrueCar is a great site to check out. They make you feel comfortable about your car price by allowing you to compare the pricing with other similar vehicles. The pricing tool is a convenient way to give you peace of mind during your online car shopping experience.
Autobytel is among the leaders in online car shopping and has been serving customers since 1995. In addition to connecting you with thousands of quality dealers, they also include informative tips that further educate you about the vehicles you are searching.You can use their pricing tool to find fair market prices and access their list of reviews to find the vehicle that best suits your needs.
This site is intended for those who are in the market for a new vehicle but don’t want the hassle of going to a dealership. They aim to provide an easy and transparent car buying experience and offer a variety of features and incentives that can help you save money on a new car.
21. Cars & Bids
Though it is new to the online car buying platform, Cars & Bids quickly became a popular online destination for enthusiasts looking to buy and sell a car through auction. They specialize in unique and luxury vehicles and take the stress out of buying a car from a dealer.
Most people are familiar with Carmax because they have hundreds of physical locations. However, it is also a great place to purchase a vehicle online. They have a huge inventory of vehicles available nationwide and their low upfront pricing takes the stress out of haggling.
23. Bring a Trailer
If you are in the market for vintage or classic cars this is the perfect site for you. They connect with sellers looking to sell their classic vehicle in an auction format. Each seller provides a detailed description of the vehicle along with pictures. The buyer also provides shipping for the winner bidder.
The J.D. Powers Award is given to the most trusted companies in each industry, and NADAguides is run by J.D. Powers himself. That means you can rest assured that you will receive quality and trusted car related information. In addition to its comprehensive pricing information, it also provides several private listings of vehicles.
Though you cannot purchase a vehicle directly through this site, RelayCars allows you to take a virtual tour of any car you are thinking about purchasing. You can explore the car inside and out prior to buying it so this is a great tool to check out before making a purchase.
Frequently Asked Questions
Honest Answers to Your Car Shipping Questions
Yes, we always ask for your specific pickup and delivery addresses, if the carrier can get right to the addresses you provide, they will. If the addresses that you give us are not safely accessible for a Multi-car carrier, however, you will need to make arrangements with the driver to meet at a nearby location where the carrier can safely get in and out.
People do it all the time (rarely for free) but the official answer is no.
Not what you wanted to hear, we know, but that is the honest answer.
We are not licensed to broker the shipment of household goods and, likewise, no car carrier that operates in the USA is licensed to transport them from state to state either. Despite what you might be being told by other car shipping companies you may speak with.
Remember, at the end of the day we're all salespeople, and the true answer to this question is not a great selling point.
You will hear a lot of companies tell you that you can put up to 100 pounds of items in the trunk, but that is not entirely true. That fact is that items of that amount are fairly common and the department of transportation is probably not going to split hairs and fine the trucker over items of that amount, provided they are not over their weight limit. They could fine them, however, if they see a vehicle stuffed full of personal items so the car carrier will most likely try to negotiate something with you to cover themselves against any costs they could incur. It's not something we can build into your contract though.
We have a short and helpful video on this topic in our user videos.
Only in rare cases and car carriers will usually charge a premium to make it happen.
All dates given by car carriers are typically estimates and projections.
For this reason (and to keep your cost down) we ask that you build in some flexibility and give us the earliest possible date you would be WILLING to release the vehicle, even though it may not be your preferred date.
We'll put you in direct contact with your car carrier and the driver will also typically call you the afternoon or evening before your pick up and delivery (they won't just show up unannounced, and if they do we want to hear about it). However, car carriers are out on the road battling traffic, weather and any number of other factors that can and do throw them off of their pickup and delivery projections from time to time.
If the projected dates we give you come and you are unable to make contact with your carrier, please call our office immediately so that we may help resolve the situation.
The average transit time from pick up to delivery on any vehicle going coast to coast will average 7 to 10 days. From there you can figure your transit time based on how far your vehicle is traveling, i.e. from either coast to the Midwest might average 3-7 days.
Even better, we do not even ask for payment until we have you confirmed for pickup by a safe, reliable, fully insured, direct car carrier. If for any reason you do not ship your car with the carrier that we arrange for you, there is no fee.
The fees paid directly to the carrier however, (in most cases, their fees are not paid until your vehicle is delivered) are not directly controlled by us, so any requests for a refund of the carrier's portion would need to be addressed with the carrier directly.
Of course! And you are always backed by our Damage Free Guarantee policy.
Part of what you pay us for is to verify that the car carrier that we put you on is covered by the proper amount of insurance and that everything is up to date.
There is never any additional cost to you for this coverage, and their insurance is always primary.
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