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How To Buy a New Car Without Going to the Dealership?

By Mike Richards Updated: 05/22/2019 Posted: 10/19/2015

What if there was a way to buy a new car without having to go to the dealership? Something that you could do right from your favorite easy chair? You can get your new car by buying it at auction.

Car Auctions Aren’t Just for Used Cars

Most people associate car auctions with used cars. That’s because the auctions that most people are aware of are those open to the public – and those auctions don’t have new cars on offer.

The automotive sales industry keeps the best opportunities, brand new cars at rock-bottom prices, to themselves in the form of private, dealer-only auctions. Car dealers are in the business to make money after all, and they can’t exactly turn a profit if their customers can get new cars elsewhere. That’s why you never hear about these auctions.

Bars to Entry

The general public is barred from entering these private auctions. You can’t gain access to a dealer-only auction without presenting proof of your status as an industry insider in the form of a dealer’s license.

There are ways around this, of course, that don’t involve getting your own dealer’s license (a costly and time-consuming process). If you have a friend or family member who owns their own used car lot, auto body garage, or even a new car dealership, you can go along with them and have them use your own money to bid on a brand new car.

Online Dealer Auctions

If you don’t have anyone like that in your life, you’re still not out of luck. Many auctions, both public and private, offer opportunities for people to bid online on the cars and trucks they have up for auction, and while private dealer auctions conducted online also require you to have a dealer’s license in order to participate, it’s much easier to find someone willing to “loan” you their own license.

In some of these auctions you can use proxy companies, entities that maintain their own license. They do the actual bidding for you, but you’re the one behind the scenes controlling the strings. This means you have full control: you’re the one who browses through the new car inventory of a particular online dealer auction, you’re the one who chooses which car or cars to bid on, and you’re the one who decides how much of your own money you’re willing to spend on bidding.

Getting Your Car Home

Whether you go to a dealer auction in the company of a friend with a dealer license or you use a proxy bidding service to “attend” a dealer auction online, you’re going to need to get your new vehicle home. Thankfully there are transport and shipping options built into most dealer auctions.

If you’re personally present at a dealer auction, your dealer friend may be able to have you drive your vehicle off the lot if he or she brought specialized “dealer” plates with them. Otherwise, you can arrange for transport from the auction organizer itself for an additional fee, so make sure you budget accordingly.

Meanwhile, if you’re not actually present at the auction because you won your vehicle in an online venue, the third-party proxy company you used to bid can provide transportation and shipping services for you at a competitive rate.

In many cases, you can even arrange for overseas shipping if you’re living in a foreign country. All you’ll need to do is pay the shipping fees and any taxes or tariffs in your destination port, and your bidding company does everything else for you. Your only responsibilities will be to pick up the vehicle at the port and get it registered and insured in your home country.

Explore our Vehicle Auctions, as well as finding more information about How These Auctions Work.