New Rules: The Used Vehicle Dilemma

Linda Moore
Posted on August 14, 2009

With prom season officially over and slower summer months already here, many operators are looking to unload stretch limousines as they have done in previous years. But this year is not like previous ones. The new reality may slap you in the face if you don’t know the facts. Industry veterans Warren Meyers and Jay Glick explain the new rules.


New cars are at the lowest prices ever!
Used cars prices are just as low or lower.

According to Warren Meyers, Owner of, one of the largest used limousine sales companies in the U.S., there are plenty of bargains to be had, but before you jump make sure you are able to get financing.

“The finance companies are not as loose with funds as they once were,” Meyers warns. “Many of the coachbuilders overbuilt last year, which has driven down the prices of new and leftover limousines. What it’s done is also drive down the price of used vehicles. Apples to apples from last year, the same vehicle is now worth $4,000 to $5,000 less. Operators trading in their cars have sticker shock when they hear what builders are willing to pay for their trade — that is if they take them at all.”


Overseas markets still exist for used limousines.
True, but there are fewer of them and they no longer are the limousine graveyards for all the junk left.

“Overseas buyers want low-mile vehicles in pristine condition at a bargain price. What once was a receptacle for all of the old-body style, high mileage vehicles, no longer exists. Overseas markets no longer want our garbage,” explains Jay Glick owner of, a bonded limousine dealer for over 15 years in Marlborough, N.J. “There really isn’t a market for old body style, high mileage vehicles anymore.”


There are many repos available on the Internet.

The same car is being sold by multiple dealers on multiple sites, which gives the appearance of available repo gluts.

Meyers and Glick believe that this is an extremely deceptive practice. “Only buy from dealers that have possession of the vehicle,” Myers cautions. “Anyone can put a list together of consignment vehicles across the country. We are bonded dealers. We have to pay insurance for our dealer’s license and go to class annually to renew it. Brokers may not have the insurance or bonds. You really need to know who you are dealing with. Before we sell cars, we go over them with a fine-tooth comb. We detail them and make sure that they are mechanically sound. A broker might not ever touch a car he sells you.”

Glick even takes it a step further by posting the VIN number of the vehicle on his website. He believes that he has nothing to hide and he encourages his buyers to pull Car Facts or other reports on the vehicles that he is selling.


There are hundreds of used limo dealers on the Internet.
Not all dealers are alike.

Glick recommends the three-C method: care, custody, and control. Make sure the dealer has possession of the vehicle and controls the title. “I have heard horror stories of people who buy vehicles then can’t get the title. Without the title you can’t register or use the vehicle so it is worthless,” Glick says. “We repair the vehicles and make sure that they are better than what they were when we brought them in. We have a mechanic and a body shop. If we sell you a vehicle, we stand behind it.”

TIPS when selling your used vehicle

  • Keep up with the maintenance of your vehicle. It’s important to have the best maintained vehicle to get the highest value when you sell it.
  • Be prepared for the process to take longer than expected.
  • Make sure your buyers are qualified and have financing before you commit to selling to them.
  • Don’t give it away. If you took care of your vehicle and it is in good shape, you should still get a good price for it. There are buyers out there, but you really need to be patient.

TIPS if you are facing repo

  • Look at all of your cars and pay off the ones you owe the least on.
  • Work with your finance company to restructure your payments. Finance companies really don’t want to take your car back if they don’t need to. Don’t lie. Communicate with the finance company and let them know what is happening and how you plan to rectify it.

TIPS when buying pre-owned vehicles

  • Shop smart. Know what you are buying. Talk to your insurance company and regulators to understand if the vehicle you are considering is able to be insured and used in your geographic area. 
  • Know who you are dealing with. Ask for references. Ask if they have any lawsuits against them. Ask others what they know about them and their reputation. 
  • Understand how online auction sites such as Ebay work before you try to sell on them. Meyers says that Ebay has become a place where dealers put up cars that they don’t have or intend to sell just to get leads or get their names out there. Be careful when using these sites. 
  • Do your homework on what cars are now worth. “So many people are upside down on their vehicles. So many people were put into vehicles that shouldn’t have been put in them. No one is bailing out our industry,” Meyers says. “Don’t give it away either. It may be better to wait a little while than to just give it away.”  

TIPS sources: Glick and Meyers

Related Topics: vehicle turnover

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