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My (miserable) experience with Bring A Trailer

Discussion in '308/328' started by Futureman, Sep 6, 2016.

  1. kcabpilot

    kcabpilot Formula Junior

    Apr 17, 2014
    888
    California SF area
    Full Name:
    Paul
    I've been watching BaT for a few years mostly to look at the pictures and read the comments. Personally I would never buy a car, sight unseen, from an auction. I don't care how professional the pictures are. Of course I always look at the Ferraris and especially the 308's that come up but I've become disenchanted with the comments section - a lot of banter by people regurgitating tired old wive's tales about how the timing belts are going to explode or how much they hate red Ferraris. It's still good for entertainment and there are occasionally interesting cars listed but I prefer the old fashioned method - face to face, look it over take it for a test drive, agree on a price and shake hands. That's how I bought mine.
     
  2. Smiles

    Smiles Moderator
    Moderator Owner

    Nov 20, 2003
    13,586
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Full Name:
    Matt F
    I agree with you, except to suggest that they are "tricking people". They aren't, say, overpromising a high return. If anything, their suggestion of a low reserve is to (in addition to making sure the car sells) establish realistic expectations.

    It's not a requirement. I didn't pay anyone. I took the pictures myself according to their (quite good) guide to photographing cars:
    https://bringatrailer.com/2017/07/08/bat-photography-10-tips-for-making-better-photos-of-your-car/

    Matt
     
  3. F355 Fan 82

    F355 Fan 82 F1 Veteran
    Silver Subscribed

    Jul 22, 2006
    7,207
    BAT just rejected me listing my 575 bc I wanted a reserve. I have a 575 w/22k miles and its fully serviced, spent $9200 on service last year, the year before the timing belts were changed and mine is red/tan with red inserts, shields and I have the luggage set too. So a gray one with no shields or luggage and 28k miles recently sold for $108k on there and I wanted to set a reserve of $105k and this kid named Zac messages me a bunch of gray/black/silver 575's with lack of service records,shields,etc and shows me completed listings from $65-90k and tells me he thinks my car is worth $90k or so and the only reason that recent one got $108k was bc it was no reserve and my reserve is unrealistic.

    Nevermind yesterday an unrestored gullwing went RNM at $1.1M but I was told no bc my car with low miles,all the options, great service records and luggage is equal to cars that need belts done,new clutches, etc that all recently went for $85k RNM. I was told that the color doesn't add much value, yes a red ferrari is equal to a champagne one. The kid was like 26 i saw his linkedin page. I had bought cars on BAT before too, I would never do business with them again, they're ridiculous instead of trying to understand that $105k for a fully serviced v12 car of which 500 or so are in the US + luggage is not unrealistic they just blow me off bc they want no reserve cars that guarantee them profit, all the RNM cars they get $99 and thats it, they want the $5k when the car sells they don't care about you the seller.

    I posted my car here on the classifieds and in 1 day, two guys messaged me and one is coming to see it tomorrow.
     
    carnutdallas likes this.
  4. carnutdallas

    carnutdallas Formula Junior
    Rossa Subscribed

    Nov 11, 2010
    793
    Dallas Burbs
    Full Name:
    Rob
    I have stopped following BaT. I turned off the notifications. They are “tools” and arrogant D’bags. And I really hate to say that about fellow car people, but it is true. I am so much better off mentally now and I am going to enjoy my car and sell it in this Forum when ready and get my price or keep it.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
    beng likes this.
  5. Smiles

    Smiles Moderator
    Moderator Owner

    Nov 20, 2003
    13,586
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Full Name:
    Matt F
    I’d say that if you demand a $105k reserve that both you and your car are a bad fit for BaT.

    You might be a great fit here or at a live auction.

    Matt
     
  6. F355 Fan 82

    F355 Fan 82 F1 Veteran
    Silver Subscribed

    Jul 22, 2006
    7,207
    The thing is the superamerica luggage set I have, one guy sold a set on here asking $14k alone. As a trader for a living the stock market has been destroyed this week in particular, I would hate to list it no reserve and it goes for $86k bc of the stock market carnage. I’m just saying what upset me is countless cars go rnm on there, hell
    The Gullwing that just got $1.1m and didn’t sell, that car needed a $500k restoration and tons of nice Gullwings are $1.1m now. It’s just funny bc they’re not remotely about representing cool cars and they’re all about money now.
     
  7. Smiles

    Smiles Moderator
    Moderator Owner

    Nov 20, 2003
    13,586
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Full Name:
    Matt F
    I’ve sold both an MG TD and a BMW M3 Convertible on BaT. I got less for the MG than I expected and more for the M3 than I expected.

    The nice thing about BaT is that buyers don’t back out.

    Matt
     
  8. energy88

    energy88 F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed

    Jan 21, 2012
    11,861
    Fredericksburg, VA & Sarasota, FL
    Full Name:
    John
    Pretty much the same here. I don't think I've opened a morning BAT email in over a year now.
     
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  9. F355 Fan 82

    F355 Fan 82 F1 Veteran
    Silver Subscribed

    Jul 22, 2006
    7,207
    FWIW that's not true, the black 575 listed on there now is relisted bc the buyer backed out. I've seen a few cars where thats happened.
     
  10. Smiles

    Smiles Moderator
    Moderator Owner

    Nov 20, 2003
    13,586
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Full Name:
    Matt F
    I didn’t sell two cars on BaT? LOL!

    :)

    Matt
     
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  11. 19633500GT

    19633500GT F1 Veteran
    Rossa Subscribed

    Nov 9, 2010
    6,791
    Connecticut
    Full Name:
    Ken S
    It’s not worth the aggravation man. I’ll maintain it’s a good platform to sell cars, because it is. But they also play games, and that’s the frustrating part. The issue is some manager type is behind the scenes making snap decisions, and you’re dealing with some 26 year old who may be a car guy, may know a lot about Porsche 911’s and Subaru WRXs, but doesn’t understand the value added in a full luggage set, or the difference between a car with full books, tools, paperwork from day 1 and all keys etc.

    But, from their perspective. They look at HUNDREDS of submissions a day. Are they cocky? Sure. Add up what they make a week, even with a large overhead, they are making hand over fist. They can “afford” to be *******s at this juncture. It sucks a bit when you’re arguing a sensible reserve, but like you said, move on, sell it here, and don’t sweat it.
     
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  12. LorenzoOO

    LorenzoOO Formula Junior
    Silver Subscribed

    Sep 21, 2017
    567
    Italia, US NE
    Full Name:
    Lorenzo LaMattina
    I always got excellent results selling, and buying, through Ferrari Market Letter, and also FCA website.
     
    F355 Fan 82 likes this.
  13. Jim Taggart

    Jim Taggart Rookie

    Feb 18, 2019
    14
    Cary, NC
    Full Name:
    James Taggart
    I have to chime in on this discussion after an *awful* experience with Bring a Trailer, BaT. After jumping through a bunch of hoops to list my 2005 Ferrari 360, I agreed to their reserve and started the auction. I own a car dealership and of course the car is in the showroom and listed on my dealer website.... BaT knew this!

    Then the bashing started. OMG. It was brutal. You'd think this car was a rust-bucket about to fall apart. It was a very clean, not without it's issues, 14 year old Ferrari. One guy in particular, SAANIK.... Then I figured out his game. He makes a low bid, then starts the bashing to scare others away, hoping to get a steal. Then I think there a just a bunch of 20-somethings with nothing more to do than pick apart your ferrari.

    But it got worse.... While the bashing was going on, a very nice gentleman showed up at the dealership wanting to see the 360, he saw on our website. Small discount and he bought it that day. Yea for me right? Being upfront, I informed BaT and they said that was "strictly against the rules". Sorry, But I didn't know. And moreover, they definitely knew it was listed on our website. At least their local rep did. He used to work for us.

    Well, they said I have to undo the deal and direct the customer to BaT. Ha. Deal was done. So the threat was that I would be banned for life (like the soup nazi!), and he would tell the community disparaging things about me as a seller. Ok, I still sold the Ferrari.

    So they let the auction go on for two more days. More bashing. Then a day before the auction was to end, they told the community that the seller had broken the rules and misrepresented the car, so they were closing the auction and banning the seller for life. What? Who wouldn't do what I did? Due to the bashing the car was at 40k. I sold it for over 80k. And the guy has stopped by several times since and loves the car.

    I would give a big caution to anyone thinking about putting their car on that site. Lies will be told and it will follow you after the auction is over and I guarantee the reserve won't be met! They keep the community forums for each car open forever on each car. So a search will find all of the bashing while you try to sell it somewhere else.

    Don't use Bring a Trailer to sell a Ferrari, or any car for that matter. Maybe buy one there.... good deals because of the derogatory comments. And I haven't even started with the arrogant attitude of their "ambassadors"!

    Thanks for letting me vent. Good luck to all.
     
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  14. Dr Tommy Cosgrove

    Dr Tommy Cosgrove Two Time F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    May 4, 2001
    29,817
    Birmingham, AL
    Full Name:
    Tommy
    You agreed to "their reserve"?

    THEY told you the least amount you would sell your car for??
     
  15. Jim Taggart

    Jim Taggart Rookie

    Feb 18, 2019
    14
    Cary, NC
    Full Name:
    James Taggart
    Yes, that's right. They make the reserve and you have to agree to it. It was low, but I was ready to move the car. So, yes they are so arrogant that THEY tell you what the reserve price is for your car.
     
  16. Dr Tommy Cosgrove

    Dr Tommy Cosgrove Two Time F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    May 4, 2001
    29,817
    Birmingham, AL
    Full Name:
    Tommy
    Lovely
     
  17. carnutdallas

    carnutdallas Formula Junior
    Rossa Subscribed

    Nov 11, 2010
    793
    Dallas Burbs
    Full Name:
    Rob
    So done with them.....But I did bid on Plugzit 's car last night :)

    Ferraris have to be one of the top 5 hardest cars to sell. My buddy has an extremely nice and sorted 1997 355 Gated Spider with 8700 miles and completely serviced. wants $89K for it and should get it. Dealers call all day long saying no one wants the car. Will give $65K for it. They are old school and people want modern. Crazy statements to try and steal the car. In the meantime, real buyers get scared by stupid comments in the public forums, on BaT, etc. Truly a bunch of no-body, non-owners who are clueless. Not trying to bash my fellow man/woman/?, but we as a society are being ruined with the internets. I participate to, so just a guilty, but after 30 years in the car business, buying, selling, enjoying is becoming way less fun. And I have the most expensive non-challenge 355 in the country, I know I will never sell it now, but someday the right butt for the right seat will come along. In the meantime, I enjoy :)

    TO HELL WITH BaT!!!!!!
     
  18. 308gtsqv

    308gtsqv Formula Junior

    Feb 12, 2008
    605
    Mass/Cape Cod
    Full Name:
    Mike
    One of the main reasons they often set the tone for the reserve is they (like most auctions) want a high sell through rate. They don't really care about the seller as they only charge $100 fee, but they make their money when a car sells and they get the % from the buyer on the sale price. You can often negotiate with them to a degree on their suggested reserve but if you're looking to set the reserve at top retail they often won't list it.
     
    killer58 likes this.
  19. Dr Tommy Cosgrove

    Dr Tommy Cosgrove Two Time F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    May 4, 2001
    29,817
    Birmingham, AL
    Full Name:
    Tommy
    I was thinking about this on the way to work this morning and that had occurred to me as to why.
     
  20. M. Brandon Motorcars

    Sponsor

    Sep 4, 2007
    1,430
    Houston, TX
    Full Name:
    Michael Foertsch
    I have to chime in here guys. I've sold many cars on BaT, and I've also bought many cars (and items) on BaT.

    When you consign a car on BaT, it's no different than consigning a car to one of the major auction companies (RM, Gooding, Bonhams, etc.). You agree that once the car is consigned, you will remove all advertising of the vehicle from all venues, and you agree that you will not sell the car yourself until the auction is complete. You agree that the auction company has the exclusive right to sell your car in their venue. BaT is no different in this regard, and they have language in their contract that you agree to stating these terms.

    Jim, if you would have consigned to a major auction venue, and you sold the car before the auction was complete, you would be on the hook for both the buyer and seller commission of whatever the low reserve was, and I assure you that you wouldn't be doing business with that auction company again.

    As for the setting of the reserve: again, BaT is no different than any other auction company. I've consigned and sold many millions of dollars of vehicles with the major auction companies, and I assure you that they want that reserve as low as possible and will negotiate hard for it, IF they will even give you a reserve at all. Yes, BaT only really makes money if the car actually sells, so of course they will be aggressive on the reserve. But, you certainly don't have to agree to their reserve, and if you can't negotiate a mutually acceptable reserve, you don't have to list your car.

    Finally, as for the bidding and commenters on BaT: realize that the vast majority of commenters on there have no intention (or usually even the means) to purchase your car. It's the same as everywhere on the Internet; everyone is an expert, and there are thousands of people out there with nothing better to do than share their (usually erroneous) expertise and/or trash your car. You just have to let it roll off, realize that the serious buyers will ask serious questions, and you do everything that you can to answer these questions if you want a good price for your car.

    And, you have to realize that bidding is almost always far below market value right up until the end of the auction. That's just human nature; no one wants to show their cards until the end. I've learned that I actually prefer bidding to stay low right up until the last day, because when that email comes out in the morning with the daily auction closures, everyone thinks that they will get a bargain, and you get more eyes (and potential bidders) on your auction. BaT has gotten popular enough that cars almost always sell for the "current market value". You may not agree with that value (and, believe me, it's a tough pill to swallow sometimes), but the market is speaking loud and clear to you.

    Bottom line is that if you want to play the game, you agree to the rules, and you can't change those rules once the game begins. If I was a serious bidder on your 360 auction, and I found out that the auction got cancelled because you sold the car out from under me, I would be pretty ticked off too, and I wouldn't want you selling on BaT again either.
     
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  21. Cuddy K

    Cuddy K Karting

    Oct 30, 2017
    115
    Full Name:
    Ian Karr
    #96 Cuddy K, May 3, 2019
    Last edited: May 3, 2019
    BaT was cool when it started. The idea of a knowledgeable “community” helping to evaluate cars was a really unique feature. Now it’s a mature platform, so people have figured out how to game the system. Negative comments designed to throw people off the trail are everywhere. Really tough to fix, too...since any restrictions on bidder comments can be circumvented by shills. The only real defense is a reasonable reserve.
     
    carnutdallas likes this.
  22. Cuddy K

    Cuddy K Karting

    Oct 30, 2017
    115
    Full Name:
    Ian Karr
    ...thought it’s true that the market speaks loudly and cars usually sell within a range of their true worth....
     
  23. Brian A

    Brian A Formula 3

    Dec 21, 2012
    2,157
    SanFrancisco BayArea
    Full Name:
    1983 US 308 GTS QV
    It always strikes me though that it is different for exotic cars. How many buyers are in the marketplace at any one time wanting to buy a 308 because they have always wanted a 308? How many general buyers are just bottom-trawling 308s for "investment" purposes?

    I don't have experience selling a 308, but it seems like they would be harder to sell than to buy. Unlike commodities, I wouldn't expect price affects market size much.
     
  24. vaccarella

    vaccarella Formula 3

    Apr 16, 2011
    2,288
    Full Name:
    Paul
    Every car bought has a seller. Every car sold has a buyer. By definition, the equation is balanced.
     
  25. m5shiv

    m5shiv Formula Junior

    Feb 25, 2013
    840
    SF Bay Area
    Full Name:
    Shiv
    I pointed out some obvious issues on a couple of cars. I got flagged and was told that all my comments would now be reviewed. Often my comments don't show up. I asked how long I was to remain in purgatory...and there was no answer.
     

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