DETROIT – SmartAuction, Ally Financial’s online vehicle auction website, announced that it has added two of the leading valuation guides, Black Book and NADA Used Car Guide, into its suite of auction tools. The addition of the industry’s two top guide books reinforces SmartAuction’s position as a leading online auction.
SmartAuction customers, which include nearly 10,000 franchise and independent dealers, now have access to values from both guides on all vehicles listed on the site. Once a default guide is selected, its values are listed as part of the functionality of the site and allow the user to filter and sort vehicle search results based on the spread between the opening price of a vehicle and its book value.
Mark Newman, SmartAuction managing director, said the addition of the valuation guides was a function dealers indicated would improve buying and selling online.
“Our dealers value the tools and user experience that SmartAuction provides because it enables them to buy and sell used vehicles with ease and confidence from the comfort of their dealerships,” said Newman. “Based on their experiences, many dealers on our Client Advisory Board have told us they also wanted the ability to view valuations on vehicles posted to the site and we are pleased to launch that functionality today in a way that will be intuitive and seamless to the user.”
Other recent enhancements to SmartAuction include the launch of “Dealer eVantage,” which provides buyer and seller alerts that use real time information to assist dealers in sorting through the 14,000 daily postings on the site.
The Dealer eVantage buyer alert uses a sophisticated analytics model to match a dealer’s buying propensity with selected vehicles in SmartAuction’s inventory. The daily seller alert provides information on the likelihood of a vehicle receiving multiple bids based upon a comparison of the seller’s initial pricing against SmartAuction’s own proprietary pricing model. SmartAuction’s model takes into account more than 500,000 wholesale transactions annually from both physical and online auctions as well as current third-party market value data.
“SmartAuction has helped change how dealers buy and sell used vehicles since its launch in 2000 by making the process easier and faster,” said Newman. “By enhancing the site with data streams, we’re also making it smarter.”
In 2010, SmartAuction saw an increase in dealer-to-dealer transactions of more than 14 percent to 76,000 units, a new record for the company. “There is a shortage of high-quality used vehicles in the market as the number of off-lease and fleet vehicles continues to stay below demand. Dealer-to-dealer transactions are critical to help dealers keep their used inventories stocked with the right vehicles for their local markets,” said Newman. “Dealer-owned vehicles have represented the majority of our daily postings for most of last year as dealers find online remarketing to be the best source for buying and selling their used inventories.”
Overall, U.S. dealers purchased approximately 412,000 units on SmartAuction in 2010, with approximately 104,000 units, or more than 25 percent of its volume, from dealers, and leading consignors of rental, repossession, and independent auction inventory. Additionally, Canadian dealers purchased a record 89,000 units on the SmartAuction Canada site bringing total North American purchases to approximately 501,000 units.