If you’ve decided to splurge on a classic or vintage car, it can be more difficult to find what you are looking for. You don’t want to head to an average car-buying website to find the kind of unique car you’re looking for. Instead, you should choose from one of the best online places to buy classic cars and vintage cars.
There are countless websites online where you can buy cars like this, and in this guide, I review each of the ten best online auction sites. I list who each one might be best for, and why you should consider shopping with the platform.
Best Online Websites and Places to Buy Classic & Vintage Cars
Many shoppers choose Hemmings, eBay Motors or My Classic Garage to find a vintage car. There’s also the option to use ClassicCars.com, Barnfinds, Craigslist or Copart.com. Aside from those, you also have Mecum, Manheim and Dyler to browse. Between these ten, you should be able to find a good deal.
One of the largest marketplaces for classic cars can be found online through Hemmings. Currently, there are more than 20,000 car ads to browse through. That’s not too shabby, considering this site started as a humble car magazine back in 1954.
With Hemmings, you can also buy and sell classic car parts. If you are fixing up your car or you have some spare components to get rid of, it can all be done with Hemmings.
The site goes beyond offering a marketplace. You can also find an updated blog and subscribe to their newsletter, which provides information about the local auctions happening near you, as well as the car clubs you might want to visit.
To use Hemmings, you need to purchase an advertising package. A two-week auction listing costs around $100 or you can choose to place a For Sale ad that includes 35 words and a photo for about $130. Ads will run for a month in the magazine and up to six months online.
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2. eBay Motors
eBay Motors continues to be a popular choice, no matter what type of vehicle you are looking for. There’s quite a selection of classic and vintage cars that varies based on how many sellers there are at the time. You can find some local options if you want to take a look at the vehicle, or you can choose to purchase something from another part of the country with the option to transport.
Additionally, you can purchase the car parts you need with ease. With so many sellers offering classic car parts, you will be able to work on your project vehicle without a struggle. You can also sell items that you no longer need.
However, you have to use caution when buying cars on eBay. You want to carefully check the seller’s ratings, because not everyone has a stellar experience on the platform. You also want to read all of the terms provided by the seller to ensure you agree before you pull the trigger on the sale. If you have questions, message the seller ahead of time.
I have listed this option as My Classic Garage because it’s what is most known by enthusiasts. However, just recently, this site has been transferred over to Motorious.com. As a newer site, you might wonder what it can offer to you, but there’s so much to check out.
As a collector, you’ll find that every tool you need is available through the platform. The site is a lot like Hemmings and might one day become as big. For now, you can find thousands of listings showcasing the classic cars you dream about.
In addition to the classic car listings, you can also find tools for tracking your collection. Plus, the site gives access to top podcasts and research tools, so you can make wise purchasing decisions. You can also keep up with the latest news.
ClassicCars.com may very well be the main rival to Hemmings, but there are normally more listings here, sometimes up to 30,000 at a time. The difference between the two is that a good portion of these listings come from car dealers instead of private sellers. Plus, there’s no database of car parts, such as what you will find with Hemmings.
Aside from classic cars, you will be able to find plenty of vintage trucks and motorcycles too. It’s designed specifically with the collector in mind. Plus, the site has been around since 2002, so there’s plenty of history under its belt. You aren’t dealing with a platform that’s brand-new in the marketplace. Maybe that’s why the site gets three million visits per month.
If you are a seller, you can generally get a good deal for marketing on this platform. If you compare the rates among others, along with what is given, you will see that this is one of the best deals out there. Plus, your listing will reach a lot of people quickly, thereby increasing the chances it will sell for top price.
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Barnfinds is a top competitor of another site, known as Bringatrailer. However, this one deserved to make it onto this list more because it offers a fantastic collection of classic cars, all for reasonable prices. Instead of competing with the top buyers, you can find a little nook on this platform and get a better deal.
You gain quick access to live auctions on the site and can see what’s coming up. There are also classifieds and wanted ads, so you can connect with other enthusiasts to find what you need. There’s an option to join with a membership, but it’s not necessary.
However, if you choose to be a Barnfinds member, you will pay another $10 a month to receive a long list of benefits. You also get more access to the Fast Finds. Plus, you get browsing without all of the banner ads and early access to the listings that are placed on the site. If you choose a yearly or lifetime membership, you can also get a discount on the price.
This online platform might be the most well-known, but not because it offers a variety of classic cars. In fact, this platform allows the sales of anything and everything you can imagine. However, if you are willing to do a little hunting, you can find the classic cars you are looking for, along with the parts you need.
There are some downsides that you must consider before you start searching. First, if you want to navigate and see what’s available in other regions, you have to manually change the search to look at those areas. Because of this step, your search could take a lot longer than you expected. However, if you are dead set on the car being a local option, you will be able to see what’s available with ease.
Keep in mind that not all of the sellers on Craigslist are reputable. In fact, there’s no vetting system to keep you protected. You must use your own discernment and carefully check over the car before you transfer any money to the seller. If something doesn’t seem right, walk away from the deal to protect yourself.
You may have heard about Copart from other automotive enthusiasts, because the site is rapidly growing in popularity. It’s simple to search for exactly the vehicle you are looking for, whether it is a Cadillac, Chevy, Ford or Porsche. There’s also a variety of conditions to browse through, from cars that are show ready to projects that give you something to work on.
What’s most impressive about the platform is how helpful the team is. Not only can you see all of the auctions, but there are additional perks, such as inspection reports and brokers if you don’t have a license to buy.
The site also offers a variety of membership levels. You can view and browse the auctions as a free member. For just $60 a year, you can bid up to $1,200 without a deposit and bid on up to five cars at the same time. However, the premier membership offers the most benefits. It costs $200 a year but allows you to bid higher, plus receive premium support for a better experience. For many people, this small cost pays for itself after one transaction.
You might not have heard of Mecum, but the platform has been around since 2011. It provides a huge collector auction for enthusiasts and is based out of Wisconsin. Plus, there are more than just cars available, with the option to choose antique tractors and motorcycles too.
What’s interesting is despite being less talked about than other platforms, this site provides the highest sales by dollar volume in the country when compared to other classic auctions. There’s also a massive in-person auction held each year in Kissimmee, Florida. If you prefer to attend an annual motorcycle auction in-person, the company holds one in Las Vegas. Either option allows you to connect with other enthusiasts, just like yourself.
The only trouble that we can see is the lack of good reviews. While other automotive publications continue to say great things about the site, there’s something else happening among some customers. The BBB rating is a little lower than most and it’s important to read through the complaints before you decide to bid.
If you’ve heard of Manheim, you know the company is one of the largest in-person auction houses in the country. What you might not know is that you can access these auctions online. While you have to weed through a lot of modern vehicles, there are also tons of collector cars to enjoy. However, with 20,000 vehicles sold a day, you might need to do some homework before bidding.
You must also be a dealer to bid at Manheim. If you aren’t a dealer, you might be able to broker a dealer to get the car you want. Plus, you must arrange transportation after the sale, but Manheim is quite helpful on this front.
The trouble comes in once again with customer reviews. The BBB rating is low, to say the least. That should cause a small amount of alarm upfront. Plus, the customer complaints cause some hesitation. That doesn’t stop enthusiasts from finding good deals, but it’s important to know what you are getting involved with.
Dyler might be a newer site, but it had to make the list because of what’s offered. The interface is simple to use and it looks great. Plus, every day, more cars seem to be added to the database, allowing for better connections between sellers and buyers.
You can buy a classic, sell a vintage car, or just visit the site to browse the magazine. Either way, you have all of the tools needed right at your fingertips. If you are going to get involved in the new site, do it now, while it is free to use. The startup company is being temporarily funded by an angel investor, giving you more money that you can put back in your pocket.
Where to Buy Classic Cars Online?
Depending on your needs, one of these ten options will be the perfect fit for you. If you are a dealer, you have more access to classic cars than the common person. However, any buyer can use platforms, such as Hemmings, eBay Motors and Craigslist.
I recommend checking multiple options out and performing an online search of what you want. Very quickly, it should become evident to you which one will best suit your unique needs. Just make sure you read all of the terms and conditions of the site before you place a bid or try to purchase something. You don’t want to enter into an agreement that you can’t follow through on.
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