Buying And Selling Cars

Les Kelley Kelley Blue Book Auto Black Book

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When it comes time to buy a car, consumers often want to use their cars as trade-ins to offset the cost of the new purchase. If you're not sure what your car is worth, you can consult Kelley's Blue Book to find the cars appraised value. Wholesalers who buy a fleet of cars look to the Black Book to find the latest selling prices.

The cars are valuated on two different decisive factors.

The main difference in the two publications is that the Black Book offers current pricing trends from actual sales, while Kelley's Blue Book offers an appraisal or judgment of what the car is worth. Both publications are guides for the automotive industry and are recognized nationally.

Kelley Blue Book

Les Kelley the founder and publisher of the Kelley Blue Book was a man of vision. He didn't set out to become the authority on used cars, but his knowledge and appraisal of used cars led him to develop a list of cars he wanted for his used car lot with the prices he wanted to pay.
Car dealers and banks alike picked up on his idea and the unofficial Kelley list was born.

A few years after the first list was distributed, Les Kelley's judgment on the value of used cars was so trusted by the auto industry that he produced his publication of the Kelley Blue Book in 1926. It quickly gained national recognition.

Today the Kelley Blue Book is the authority on used car values. Dealers and consumers alike use this the Kelley Blue Book to value used cars. Kelley left the used car business in 1962 and turned his full attention and dedication to the Kelley Blue Book.

At the official Kelley Blue Book website [] you can find used car trade-in, private sale, and retail value information. Generally you can make $1000 to $2000 more if you sell your car yourself. If a dealer resells your car, he makes about $4000 to $5000 more than the trade-in value for cars in good condition.

Cars in poor condition are often sold to wholesale dealers who sell them at auction.


The Black Book made its first publication appearance in 1955 and like Kelly's Blue Book had a humble beginning starting with three businessmen from Gainesville, GA. They made frequent visits to dealer-only auto auctions and each began to keep handwritten records tracking the actual auction prices on a weekly basis.

Other dealers learned of their price lists and began to request copies of their prices and soon the Black Book came into existence. Like the Kelley Blue Book, the Black Book gained national recognition within a few short years of its launch.

The Black Book is able to update auction data, print the information, and send it to the customer within 7 to 10 days for a quick turnaround. In addition to cars and light trucks, you can find presale auction information on motorcycles and other vehicles.

Black Book is considered the leading source in of used car valuations. It's a Division of the Hearst Media Group with a market that includes auto auction dealers, wholesale buyers, and the re-marketing industry. []

Consult the Kelley Blue Book to find your cars trade-in and resale value, but should you decide to buy a used car at an auction, you'll find your best guide from the Black Book. If you buy from an auction, learn the ins and outs of the process so you won't be stuck with a car that is not titled or has an invalid VIN.

Become familiar with the Kelley Blue Book and Black Book publications to learn how to find the best car and truck deals available. They're the authorities.

More about this author: Mona Gallagher

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