Wednesday, December 09, 2015


Shopping for a new car? Then you’ve probably looked at your current set of wheels and wondered how much you would get for it. Trading in a car at a dealership is a popular and convenient way to sell it. Here are some commonly asked trade-in questions:


Why should I trade in my car?

While you might be able to wangle a slightly better deal if you sell your car privately, it also comes with added hassles and risks.

You have to post an advert, take phone calls and go on test drives with complete strangers before receiving any sort of offer, not to mention the scammers and carjackers that are an unfortunate reality in South Africa.

There are also potential minor repairs to be done, roadworthy tests to be completed and change of ownership forms to be processed. After looking at the rigorous process that you need to go through the convenience of trading in at a dealership starts to become more apparent and appealing.


How are trade-in prices calculated?

When you decide to trade in your car there will be a few different terms that you will hear:

  • Retail price: This is the price of the car when someone buys it from a dealer.

  • Trade-in price: This is the price that the dealer will pay you for the car.

  • Book value: Dealers may talk of the blue book value – this is the industry-accepted dealer valuation on which they will base their price.


How do I work out the value of my car?

You have a couple of choices when it comes to determining the value of your car:

  • Do you own research: Keep an eye on retail sites and see what similar models are going for. Remember that extra features such as a sound system or mags will push the price up.

  • Get an independent valuation: Using an online app such as Santams car calculator will give you an estimate of your vehicle’s worth.

(A well-looked-after car is always a desirable car. Keeping records of repair work, new tyres etc with your service history book will give you more bargaining power.)


How do I make my trade-in car attractive to dealers?
  • Spending some money to repair any scratches or dents will mean that there is less to criticise.

  • Make sure your car is clean. A clean car (interior and exterior) is much more attractive.

  • Do all essential maintenance. Again, the less that there is to nitpick the better.

When trading up you get a freedom of choice that isn’t available when shopping for used cars, being able to choose the added extras you want and your favourite colour paint job is a great luxury. You will also find that, while a used car may cost less initially, you get better finance rates as a new-car buyer.

Interested in trading in and trading up? Give us a call and we will help you out!




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