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Edmunds selling long term tester: Shocked by lowball Carmax offer

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Old 08-24-13, 11:25 PM   #1
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Default Edmunds selling long term tester: Shocked by lowball Carmax offer

2013 Lexus GS 350: Carmax Appraisal
http://www.edmunds.com/lexus/gs-350/...appraisal.html

Carmax likes to place its luxury cars front and center in all its car lots. The first two rows are always filled with cars from Audi, BMW, Lexus and Mercedes. So, I figured our long-term 2013 Lexus GS 350 would bring in big bucks when I took it in for an appraisal the other day. Boy, was I wrong.

Before you hit the jump, take a guess as to how much we were offered. For reference, Edmunds.com's trade-in TMV was $44,907. Keep in mind the car has just over 20,000 miles.

"I'm guessing you're going to offer me $45,000," I said to the Carmax sales representative. She turned her monitor toward me and showed me a price of $40,000.

"The car's options were great, but the miles really hurt this car," said the appraiser who popped in to the cubicle we were in. He added that he couldn't improve on that price because it would get too close to the price of a new car.

This lowball offer caught me off guard. I've brought in cars with similar mileage and it usually wasn't an issue. Plus, I don't think the appraiser accounted for the F Sport package. There was no mention of adjustable suspension anywhere on the "features considered" section of the page. It seemed as though he treated it like a "regular" GS 350.

Here are some other numbers to put the $40K in perspective:

MSRP at purchase: $63,427
We paid: $58,377 (plus tax and title)
Private Party TMV: $47, 431
Carmax offer: $40,000

I'm going to try to improve on the Carmax offer by selling the Lexus myself. I'm considering listing it for somewhere around the private-party TMV price.

I'll let you know how it goes.

Ronald Montoya, Consumer Advice Editor @ 20,329 miles
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Old 08-25-13, 12:28 AM   #2
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I'm not surprised. Carmax is for people with no time to sell their own cars so they don;t mind looking few thousands.
Want the best money for your car sell it privately.
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Old 08-25-13, 12:33 AM   #3
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Carmax "buyers" are a joke. Very inconsistent appraisals with a trend to low balling beyond comprehension in my recent experience. You are better off trading in at a dealer motivated to sell and thereby willing to give you a fair price.
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Old 08-25-13, 05:40 AM   #4
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Carmax has to make a profit so I'm not surprised at all.
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Old 08-25-13, 07:46 AM   #5
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When I traded my 2011 GS in for my 2013, I got a quote from the dealer. I then drove down the road to CarMax. They weren't able to beat the dealership's offer, so I traded with the dealer.

Disclaimer: I didn't stick around for the full hour appraisal, just the very basic ballpark figure they could give me based on options/mileage/condition/market saturation.
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Old 08-25-13, 10:24 AM   #6
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Really hit or miss from CarMax. I've sold them cars for truly ridiculous prices, where nobody else could touch it...and had them really lowball.
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Old 08-25-13, 10:45 AM   #7
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I know this is a totally different comparison, but I couldn't resist. Last month I took my mom's all original 2000 Honda Accord V6 (original owner) with 59,000 miles to Car Max. Please note this car never had any paint work, dents or dings and in near perfect condition. Car Max offered me $3,000. I sold it the following week in autotrader for $6500! I had 2 people interested at the same time.
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Old 08-25-13, 04:39 PM   #8
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I've NEVER found CarMax to be a good deal. I've always found a motivated dealer far superior on the trade in price
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Old 08-25-13, 05:31 PM   #9
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I certainly have had situations where Carmax was a good deal...
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Old 08-25-13, 06:49 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SW13GS View Post
Really hit or miss from CarMax. I've sold them cars for truly ridiculous prices, where nobody else could touch it...and had them really lowball.
What I was gonna say... Hit or miss.. I've heard good stories and bad...
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Old 08-25-13, 08:34 PM   #11
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That's a pathetic lowball offer by Carmax there. Not at all surprising but still shockingly bad.
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Old 08-28-13, 11:29 AM   #12
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I paid around $45k for my nearly loaded CPO'd F-Sport with 15k miles about four months ago, so sorry to say, but the Carmax offer sounds about right.
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Old 08-29-13, 07:40 PM   #13
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The other thing to think about when selling to Carmax rather than trading for another car through a dealer is that you will pay full taxes on the new car. If you trade your car for a new one at a dealer you will only pay taxes on the difference in the value of the new car less the trade. So, even if Carmax offered a slightly BETTER price than the dealer you still might come out even.

And, yes... they low-balled me too on an '06 M45 Sport. Sewell Infiniti offered me a better trade-in price.
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Old 08-30-13, 06:02 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dseag2 View Post
The other thing to think about when selling to Carmax rather than trading for another car through a dealer is that you will pay full taxes on the new car. If you trade your car for a new one at a dealer you will only pay taxes on the difference in the value of the new car less the trade. So, even if Carmax offered a slightly BETTER price than the dealer you still might come out even.
Varies state to state.
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Old 08-30-13, 06:43 AM   #15
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The offer does not sound too far off, I looked at used 2013 gs350 and there are 46 used 2013 gs350 within 200 miles of me..46!!! The cheapest 2013 is $42,995 and cheapest awd f-sport was $43,888.
I find this VERY weird that there are soo many of these cars pre-owned all ready. There is no other car out there that you can find so many pre-owned on the market after only 16 months..
Do you guys think that a lot of older folk are buying the car and then can't figure out how to use the mouse?
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Old 08-30-13, 06:43 AM
 
 
 
 
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