From Rolls Royce to Bentley, there’s no denying that some of the world’s most covetable luxury car brands all but sell themselves. Masterpieces of engineering comprising lavish interiors with optimal performance, the finest high-end drives are designed specifically to cater to an affluent clientbase, and serve as much as a symbol of status as they do a means of getting around.
And it seems that this year, we’ve been happier than ever to get our cheque books out, with Rolls Royce reporting a 30 per cent uplift in sales during the first half of the year, and Bentley seeing a similar spike in interest, at 23 per cent – in spite of the slight contraction of the luxury market as a whole during this period in the wake of the ongoing pandemic. The pleasure of getting behind the wheel of a prestigious car, with its fine leather seats and the latest technological advances, knows no bounds, and regardless of the current economic climate, we’re apparently not willing to cut back on our favourite luxuries just yet – if we ever will be.
But while purveyors of opulent and brand new cars such as these might be doing well in the showrooms, selling your own luxury car when you’re ready for something new can prove to be somewhat more complicated. Those who can afford to spend six figures on a new set of wheels often prefer to buy with zero mileage on the clock, and unless your car is an older, classic or collectible model, you might have a challenge ahead if you’re looking to offload yours.
Traditionally, there are two options: selling your luxury car yourself in a private party sale, or trading it into the dealership, but each comes with its pitfalls. Nevertheless, they offer their advantages, too, and as long as you know what you’re getting into before you splurge on that next new model, you’ll be well prepared when the time comes.
The private party sale
Selling your car to a private buyer is generally the preferred choice amongst high-end owners and, in essence, can see you stand to make more money in doing so – but nevertheless, finding a serious luxury car buyer can be more difficult than you might imagine. Such is the allure of cars like these that they tend to attract plenty of attention from parties who appreciate fine vehicles, but not all of those people will have the financial means to follow through. In some cases, buyers might not have the required funds available upfront, but will be able to gather it over the course of a couple of months – which is all very well until you consider the depreciation in value of a car that will be happening in the meantime, or unless you’re hoping for a quick sale.
Then, there’s the challenge of attracting potential buyers in the first place. Online adverts are a great way to garner attention for mid-range and entry-level cars, but sadly, when it comes to luxury cars, can be a magnet for time wasters looking to test-drive a car they can’t afford.
The trade in
Of course, there is another option, and one that many would consider an easier path to take. Trading your car in against a newer model is a quick and easy way to lay your hands on a new high-end vehicle of dreams – that is, if you want to upgrade to the latest offering from the same car brand. If not, you can expect to receive a much lower than anticipated offer for your car from an alternative manufacturer’s showroom, because accepting a Mercedes when you sell Rolls Royces is an additional burden for the luxury car salesperson, and one that is only worth it should they manage to land themselves an excellent deal.
The bottom line
Selling a used luxury car might not be the easiest task, but armed with the right knowledge before deciding to go ahead, you’ll be certain to take the right approach to doing so. Our recommendation? Opt for the middle ground and enlist the help of a professional to execute a private sale on your behalf. That way, the marketing will be taken care of, and the stress of attracting the perfect buyer will be taken off your hands – plus, you’ll get the best price possible for your precious prized possession, without having to compromise for the sake of a quick trade.