Used car from dealer vs car supermarket - Molehill

Looking to buy a three year old Toyota Verso and after some searching I have noticed a couple at large car supermarkets (one being cargiant) are about £1k cheaper than the few I can find at local dealers. Seems like they all have full service history.

I assume the two years of remaining warranty is transferred no matter where you buy it from? What advantages are there to buying from a dealer considering I am not interested in finance or part exchange? Why do the dealers charge more?

Used car from dealer vs car supermarket - gordonbennet

Have a good perusal of these full service histories (they might be ex renters and SH could be patchy), once you subject yourself to the production line hard sales format of some, not all car supermarkets, you might be well involved before you get to see any service history even if it isn't temporarily mislaid, and if that isn't perfect the makers warranty isn't guaranteed.

Also factor in high pressure sales for GAP, paint protection, aftermarket warranties etc etc plus high rate finance even if you need it (they really do not like cash buyers), though the finance aspect might well be the very first discussion before you ever set eyes on any potential car at some supermarkets.

The above does not apply to all such places of course, and it might well apply to smaller normal dealerships too.

If the car is coming from a main dealer and has an approved used Toyota warranty on it, you stand more chance of knocking a bit off without a trade in, you won't find an admin fee added to the bottom line or you might be able to get a years approved used cover chucked on when the maker's warranty expires.

Edited by gordonbennet on 16/03/2017 at 19:31

Used car from dealer vs car supermarket - RobJP

Never 'assume' that the warranty is still valid. Absolute documentary proof, or a signed declaration that it is so.

Remember - assume - makes an ASS out of U and ME

Used car from dealer vs car supermarket - SLO76
As long as it has a full dealer service history then the remainder of the 5yr warranty will still be valid but Toyota dealers do tend to have the best stock while late model cars that slip through to supermarkets and smaller dealers have often not been of suitable quality to be approved used at a main dealer so scrutinise the service history carefully and check for poor quality paintwork repairs.

That's not to say they don't stock some good cars, I've certainly bought from them before and viewed cars on behalf of others that have been fine. Our current Polo came from a car supermarket and was £1,500 cheaper than any VW dealer but it had seen the rear bumper poorly painted in the past which was a bit off colour. I figured I could get it painted for £100-£200 and still be quids in. Turns out a mechanic at our local VW dealer reversed it into a bollard when it was in for a service last week and they ended up painting it for free. Result.

Main dealers have higher overheads than car supermarkets as manufacturers demand they spend money upgrading and updating facilities regularly plus most approved used stock comes from closed sales open only to dealers via the manufacturer themselves, these are mostly low mileage ex lease stuff but all will be prepared to a far higher standard than most cars you'll find elsewhere and cost dealers substantially more.

Edited by SLO76 on 16/03/2017 at 19:55

Used car from dealer vs car supermarket - bathtub tom

I bought my last car from Motopoint - usual disclaimers about connections etc.

They were two grand less than my local main dealer for the same age and mileage. Both had many ex-hire, although the main dealer wouldn't admit their history, nor would they produce the V5. No such difficulty at Motorpoint whose cars were also better presented.

Used car from dealer vs car supermarket - Terry W

I think there are two "types" of car supermarket - those that are simply large dealers, and those specialising in nearly new and some new. I have bought cars from the latter for thhe last 12 years with no problems,

A few years ago I did challenge the local dealer to match the price on a 1 year old Focus. Screen price was £2000+ apart and he was never going to get close.

The reason supermarkets are cheaper is lower overheads - they seem to buy in volume, have sites with several hundred cars (not fancy showrooms), and generally the screen price is what you pay - all very simple.

I've come to the conclusion that they are just part of the way manufacturers get nearly new cars on the road after 5-15000 miles with a hire company, or to shed excess stocks. No issues with warranty either - readily honoured by the local main dealer when the water punp failed.

Avoid all the extras they may try to sell you - car mats, gap insurance, finance, paint treatment etc - these are all IMHO overpriced. Make sure any services have been done properly or you risk invalidating the warranty. With my last purchase the trade in price was not very good (140k Mondeo) - no problem - when you collect the car either bring the trade in or the full price and do private sale.

Used car from dealer vs car supermarket - Miniman777

There have been a number of stories of folk buying used cars, being told the service book is lost, not being shown the V5 - all the usual saleman's bull.

I have never bought a car without sight of either, and also calculating the annual average mileage, with no problems. I've noticed some car supermarkets sell cars with high mileage, but one that does show service history I've noticed is patchy, some missing their first service, so in effect voiding any remaining manufacturers warranty. Some of the presentation at supermarkets has been questionable, one car stinking of dogs.

The supermarket will add on this, that and the other, including making you pay for a warranty, whereas cars I've bought from dealers with a manufacturer backed warranty included and have developed a fault were fixed, no questions, including a short engine in one.

The extras, Gap insurance, alloy wheel and tyre insurance, Scotchguarding etc, are all cheaper away from the dealer, and that would sway me to a franchised dealer.

Do your homework, dont rush, there's plenty of cars out there.

Used car from dealer vs car supermarket - Andrew-T

You've already heard the main reasons from the experts. But the buying climate can play a part too. I bought my present Peugeot from a Pug dealer soon after the credit crunch, just before Christmas - it was 9 months old with 13K on the clock, £5K less than new list price. The odd thing was that they had another example for £1K more - the only difference was it was black, not blue. Mine was ex-rental from the Pug internal auction system where dealers pick off the best cars, so I guess the black one was too.

Car supermarkets are like the others: stack 'em high, sell 'em cheap. Volume sales.

Used car from dealer vs car supermarket - daveyjp

Supermarket you generally pay what is on the screen, but be wary of other sundry costs for admin fees, HPI checks, pre delivery valet etc etc which can add £100-200 to the cost.

Dealers price cars expecting a negotiation. Negotiate 10-15% off the dealer car, no admin fees to pay and your £1000 extra can become a couple of hundred.

Used car from dealer vs car supermarket - Andrew-T

Negotiate 10-15% off the dealer car, no admin fees to pay and your £1000 extra can become a couple of hundred.

I think you'll need to be pretty experienced to get that discount if you intend to part-ex. Then it's two people trying to sell each other a car.

Used car from dealer vs car supermarket - Dogfuzz

If buying one or two year old car--i would always go via dealer looking out for their "approved" stock. Agree with everything said so far in this post

Of course-it may well be the car you discuss with salesman is at a distant sister dealership ( say 50 miles) . Whether vehicle was present in forecourt or not--I would insist on sales accessing the service and maintenance history at an early stage--even asking for a print out. I would also ask what sort of use the vehicle has previously had eg demo, rental, company car, private use then traded in or private use and exchanged after an unusually short period--log book might help a bit here here. Be suspicious if log book unavailable .

After a money discussion-A really good way of getting a discount is just to say "this all looks good-I'd like to think about it for a day or so" . Then walk away. I guarantee dealership will ring you within 48 hours with a better offer.

Used car from dealer vs car supermarket - Andrew-T

I guarantee dealership will ring you within 48 hours with a better offer.

You must visit different dealerships from the (limited) ones I do. My impression is that they think their phones only take incoming calls.

Used car from dealer vs car supermarket - catsdad
I've bought in the past from both main dealers and car supermarkets. One difference to bear in mind are the benefits that might be chucked in by main dealers. My Civic came with a five year service pack at a good saving over paying out for each service individually - and it includes annual oil, three year brake fluid change, pollen filter, valve clearance etc not just the bare minimum. On top of this I get free MOTs and Honda breakdown cover as long as I use the dealer for service.

Once I factored this into the comparison then the price difference between the two types of outlet narrowed considerably.

When I look again I will look at both options but consider the overall deal, not just the price of the car.

Ask Honest John

Value my car