Go to any auto auction. Chances are you’ll see 2001 Accords and Camrys go for higher prices than 2003 Tauruses and Grand Prixs. Is that premium justified? Well, I’ll put it to you this way.
Buy here-pay here lots are rapidly becoming the strongest segment at the auctions. A lot of you may think, “Oh, well those guys are the biggest rip-off joints in the business.” Well . . . yes and no. I do know of a few particularly nasty companies that Frankenstein cars to the poor dumb shits of the world. They also have the lawyers and lobbyists to prove it. However most BH-PH lots are more interested in selling something that lasts. To paraphrase Mr. McGuire, they want the money.
The notes will typically be anywhere from one to four years and they need to make sure the car sold will last with minimal expense during that time. They also want something that sells quick and high; and reputation sells. In spite of all the gently driven old cars, with good owners aplenty, most folks want the car that simply offered the best quality on day one. End of story. The Civics, Corollas, Camrys and Accords have been that car. In fact, there are weeks where one nationally known used car dealership will have more Accords OR Camry trade ins with over 150k than all the other European and American cars put together. Should you buy one? Well now we’re talking value . . . which really depends on the owner. Unfortunately most buyers at BH-PH lots rarely consider that side of the equation.