AutoTrader - Or the best place to buy or sell your car!
Written: Mar 28, 2003 (Updated Oct 15, 2009)
When I look for a good auto biased web service, I look for more than just good car deals. If I'm going to return to an auto web service on a regular basis I want car reviews, car specs, miscellaneous info, etc. I have been using AutoTrader.com for about 4 years now and have found this web service to be one of the best in informing me about the latest in car deals, car info in general, etc.
About the site:
AutoTrader.com is a web service that is dedicated to helping the consumer sell their cars or find great deals on new and used cars. The site also offers quick insurance quotes, tons of car info, including buying tips, vehicle history reports, car reviews, blue book values, etc. etc. The site is simple to navigate through; icons are clear and well placed, advertisements are kept to a minimum, and pop-up ads are next to none.
The site is also beneficial for those who want to sell their cars. According to AutoTrader.com they receive over 6 million visitors each month; not bad. My only gripe in this department is that the site charges quite a hefty amount to advertise a vehicle. For 21 days the base price is $35 dollars, $45 with photo, and $70 to run your add with a photo till your vehicle sells, this is over 100% more than what CarsDirect.com charges for the same type of advertising. In-order to sell your vehicle you must fill out your standard registration form which requires your address, phone number, credit card number, etc. I successfully sold my Ford Tempo using this site back in the late 1990s, however I don't remember paying these steep charges.
Note: AutoTrader also features auctions for those who would like to use this particular type of buying or selling.
Buying a car from the site is simple and results on deals in your area are almost always offered (even in my small area I have found up to 50 auto deals!). AutoTrader.com offers tons of options to help narrow your search, i.e. you can enter the mileage you are willing to travel, the amount you are willing to pay , etc. etc. When I look for a car online to buy I always look in the AutoTrader classifieds before I visit other web services due to their huge selection. One should note that you do not have to give out any personal info to buy a car advertised at AutoTrader.com or to browse the site. To buy a used car you simply click on the contact icon and you are given the private seller's phone number. Naturally automotive dealers are also featured at this site. Unlike some online auto web services you are able to E-mail the dealer or get the dealer's phone number without the hassle of them contacting you first. A recent visit with PaymentShopper.com (another car shopping web service) had dealers calling me without my permission, this has not been the case with AutoTrader.com.
Additional Experience Info:
A major asset that has kept me using AutoTrader.com is their vast amount of car info and auto reviews. I really like the formatting of this info as well; very easy to access. Some auto web services, i.e. Cars.com was once a service that I used on almost a daily basis to gather car info, however they have recently sacrificed their significant amount of info for cool web graphics. As any video game player will tell you, cool graphics mean nothing if the gameplay is sacrificed. The same thing can be said about web services in the sense that graphics are useless if the ability to use the site is negatively affected. With AutoTrader nothing is sacrificed, the graphics are decent, and usability is kept extremely simple.
Thanks to Auto Trader's huge selection of cars for sale I have been able to find a number of cars that I have been interested in. The only problem I have had here is actually purchasing the cars for sale. To explain, every time I have found a car that I was willing to buy, most vehicles advertised are already sold by the time I contact the seller. I'm not complaining, this is just a good example of how well this site does attracting buyers. I would also like to note that I have found cars for sale at this site that have been sold for less than half of their MSRP.
With the huge selection of cars for sale, the mass amounts of info and reviews, I recommend this site to anyone interested in automobiles. I'm rating this site at 4 stars. Why not 5 stars? While the site obviously does a great job advertising your car, I feel the price to advertise is way too high, especially since CarsDirect.com, Cars.com Autoweb.com, etc. all offer much cheaper prices for similar advertising plans.
A huge thanks to Joubert for adding this web service to our database!
Did you enjoy this review? If so, check out my review on CarsDirect.Com
-Thanks for reading!