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rrtec 01-18-2013 05:11 AM

Can We Talk Value? I accidentally bought a cavalier?
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Ladies and Gents,

I don't usually have a hard time with pricing vehicles and usually use the standard KBB values to buy and sell but now that I am in a place where it is time to sell the e38 I feel that the reflected KBB value for my car does not reflect the actual value of the car itself or the driving experience or condition for that matter...

KBB suggests that private party value on my car is $3500. Here is the low down on my car.

1997 740i
RARE color Combo and rare "i" not "IL" status..- Black on Black
167,000 miles maintenance up to date and regularly serviced
18" M-Pars with good tires (or style 5's for that matter)
Nice set of tail lights and Headlights (also Xenon HID's added)
Tinted and recent shadowlined.
Everything on the car works and the paint is in good shape.

How is it possible that a car that is in great shape, that runs this well, and gets compliments left and right is only booking at $3500? It gets 26mpg on long trips to canada and back, and 22 around town..What barganing tools do I have when RETAIL value is only $5000? I don't need to sell per say..But I really want to. Keeping the E38 is not a long term option. I have my 99 540i 6speed M-Sport E39 too and this sale would give me the opportunity to pay off a chunk of the wifes car and do minor repairs to the E39. I see junk cars (bonnevilles, centuries, cadillacs, etc) sell for more than $3500...

I guess my question is can I realistically expect to sell my car for more than book value? I see a mix of people asking anywhere from $7500 down to $3000 for various condition and mileage 740i and 740il cars with various issues... Im bummed and feel like someone just valued my car in the same realm as a cavalier.:dunno:

gazagod 01-18-2013 01:36 PM

Hold on to it around tax time n sell for 6k take 5,5 at the least at a dlrship they would ask 10,5 for that car..dnt b bummed out some kids dad will buy it frm u if all what u said about the car is true..would help alot also if u got it inspected..their around 250-300 if u buy it..

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gazagod 01-18-2013 01:41 PM

I have a 95 750il 240k on dash bought for 3k dvd in headrest great system..i wont let it go for less than 5k..of they ask y..i say come test drive it..thats y..also would help if u can throw a handicap thing on ur rearview mirror n take pics of it then post it 4 sale

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setconstr 01-18-2013 02:03 PM

When a car gets old kelly blue book doe's not matter it's just a guide . Your car looks awesome and I'm sure you'll get your asking price just really matters how much time you have

rrtec 01-18-2013 08:14 PM

I have lots of time. I was just super shocked. I paid $10,000 4 years ago but of course the car had half the miles then..

I appreciate the encouragement, the car has been my baby for the last 4 years and has been my dream car for longer. The only reason I am even thinking of getting rid of it is because the 540i/6 I bought was my dad's car... And it is the car that turned me onto bmw's in the first place..

SeanMH-6 01-18-2013 08:41 PM

I'm pretty new to the BMW realm. I could not believe how low the blue book was on these cars when I scoped out my 525i. Certainly with the build quality and performance hear car give they are worth much more to people like us.

What I speculate with the low blue book values is dealer service rates and how much attention these cars require. Because I am a mechanic, I reap the benefits from these low blue book values. It's the people that buy these cars not knowing what they are, people who take their vehicles to the dealer for everything, that become convinced they are a bottomless pit for cash and thus brings down the value. Only disadvantage to me and I'm sure many others here is feeling locked in due to kbb values.

Don't sell it for anything less than you want out of it. It took me over a year to sell my rsx for what I wanted, and it brought me to my e39. Patience will reward you and I hope tax season will help expedite things for you. Good luck with the sale

BMWFatherFigure 01-18-2013 11:05 PM

IMO any car is worth exactly the price settled on. All BM's suffer with base price values on a well optioned examples, I believe. The most important thing is that first impression. If the car looks WOW :thumbup: you are in a much stronger position to bargin than if it looks wow:thumbdwn:. Good luck with your sale. BTW that car would command $12 - $15k here. I have been offered $25k for mine but I'm not interested in selling.

Schnell99 01-22-2013 03:11 PM

Can I chime in here? I am also very new to the BMW forum but not cars. I have been buying and selling cars for a long time. I recently purchased my first BMW. a 1999 740iL and as I was searching for cars I was absolutely amazed at how some people would present a car for sale. Opening the doors to find trash spilling out or opening the hood to find leaves and oil slung everywhere does not exude confidence in a purchase. But people do it all the time! This is nothing new....but amazes me every time I look at cars for sale (especially those sold privately).

When you think of the quality/looks/performance of automobile that you get in a BMW for the price of a used up Toyota....I would say that when it comes time to sell your BMW you need to make it stand out from the rest of the crowd and make sure it is spotlessly clean. Then don't worry so much about the asking price, just ask your price and let the potential buyer make the choice between your gorgeous car and someone elses junk pile on wheels.

rrtec 01-22-2013 05:36 PM

I think I am presenting my car well, and fairly as well. I have listed the areas that need improvement up front.. I am going to wait it out for the right buyer.

Schnell99 01-22-2013 08:08 PM

[QUOTE=rrtec;7330924].. I am going to wait it out for the right buyer.

With a car as nice as yours I would definitely wait for the right buyer. Have you tried Ebay? I have sold quite a few cars there with great success...even if they didn't sell through the auction, they sold later BECAUSE of Ebay. It only costs you about $7 to list it with a reserve if it doesn't sell and $125 if it does sell. Take a look at the completed listings for some of the cars that have sold or auctioned and didn't meet reserve to see if that might be an avenue for you.

PaystarCEO 01-24-2013 05:49 PM

Chalk it up to a good life lesson on how a market works.
The market could care less what we all think or even how beautiful your car is ... we aren't buying your car.
Your car is only worth what someone else in the market is willing to pay.

I can assure you, if any of us (including you) were BUYERS, we wouldn't care what the seller thought the value of the car was, we would only pay the absolute minimum we could get away with ... we'd look at what other cars like it are selling for and try to get under that. None of us are going to say, "well I could buy one just like it for $3500, but you know what, you think its worth at least $5,000 so what the heck, I'll give you $5,000."

So if you want to talk about value (as in $ worth in the market), the accurate statement is, your car is only valued at $3500 if that is all anyone will offer. But remember, its those dastardly buyers like you and the rest of us that make it so.

Your raw math equation is as follows:
IS $3500 + $200/month maintenance savings >= losing BMW + Enduring Sales Process ... or in other words, is $3500 cash in your pocket plus a reduction in car expense worth more than giving up your BMW

There are some good ideas in the other comments, all saying the same thing - the more people that see your vehicle, the greater chance you have at finding someone who values your car more than $3500. Its just math.

But here is the good news. If you ever want to get back into a similar BMW, you will be able to buy one for $3500 - a huge value for you.

I do hope you get as much as possible for your beautiful BMW.

Good luck.

BMWFatherFigure 01-26-2013 04:20 AM

Remember it is the FACTORY OPTIONS that make a car standout - not standard features. And clean helps!!

rrtec 06-09-2013 05:23 PM

The car sold for $5500 cash to a very excited buyer.. He didn't even test drive it.. I still feel that the car was worth much more.. But what can you do.

Mayorchuck 06-09-2013 09:28 PM

You did VERY well to get that for a '97. It's a testament to the care and condition of the car. Anything over $5k gets you into a facelift around here. I wish the 5 series had the same issue with value.

lamarselby 06-10-2013 01:54 AM

wow..what a beautiful ride!

jitsjaf2009 06-10-2013 08:56 AM

Kelly BB tells what others are paying, not what they are getting.

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