There seem to be as many used car sites as there are used car types, buyers, and sellers. Nevertheless, Autotrader stands out from the crowd due to its long history of selling used cars online and advanced search tools that make it easy to find the perfect car.
For those looking for a simplified shopping experience, CarsDirect allows shoppers to compare listings from local dealerships without getting overwhelmed, while Autolist offers the best mobile shopping experience. And when it comes to price, CarGurus’ unique rating of deals helps shoppers find the best value.
For classic car enthusiasts, Hemmings has a wealth of classic car listings, auto parts, auto shows and car talks to satisfy the most diehard vintage car fanatics. Those with an eye for unique cars from the 80s to today will love Cars & Bids’ quick and easy car auctions, free listings and reasonable commission fees.
|Best Used Car Sites|
|To place||Why we chose it||Notable Features|
|Autotrader||Best overall||Most ads as well as financing and insurance tools|
|CarsDirect||Best basic option||Helpful buying guides for car buyers|
|Hems||Ideal for classic cars||Marketplace for classic auto parts as well as classic cars|
|List of cars||Ideal for mobile||Mobile-first shopping experience|
|CarGurus||Ideal for cheap cars||Value scoring finds the best deals|
|AutoStorm||Great for comparing options||Ads from the most sites|
|Cars and Auctions||best auction site||Fast ads and low fees|
Frequently Asked Questions
How do used car websites work?
Used car sites allow people to buy or sell used vehicles online. Most offer robust search engines, car history reports, and buying guides to help buyers find exactly what they want.
Used car sites generally do not engage in the transaction of vehicles themselves and rely on matching sellers and buyers who can make their own arrangements. Many sites also offer market guides and car reviews to help guide buyers and sellers and some even offer finance calculators and partnerships with lenders and insurance companies.
Do I have to pay for a used car site?
Used car sites usually charge sellers who want to advertise their car. Our research shows that the price can be as low as $25 for a basic ad that will last for a month, with the cost increasing for additional photos, words, and other ads.
Due to the nature of the vehicles they sell, car sites that sell classic cars or cars from certain eras charge more, usually around $89 and up. Auction sites will also take a commission which can start at 4.5% of the sale price.
Can I trust a used car site?
Used car sites that connect buyers with private sellers can do little to provide a safe shopping experience. What they can do, however, is provide as much information as possible to help buyers make the most informed decision.
As a result, used car sites typically include CARFAX reports, information on how long a car has been sold, price comparison guides, and search filters to help buyers narrow down the choices they do not want. Sites that aggregate ads from many online marketplaces usually can’t do much to ensure that the ads they display are trustworthy, and buyers should always do their due diligence when purchasing a car.
We looked at over a dozen used car sites for this review and selected sites that had built great trust through a long history of selling cars or that created safe and personal experiences for buyers at the search for specialized vehicles.
Because buying a used car can be overwhelming, scary, and stressful, we also made sure to choose sites with detailed search engines to help shoppers compare the features they wanted most. Sites with comprehensive buying guides and reviews of current cars were at the top of our list, as these resources can help buyers make informed buying decisions.