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Hagerty
Hagerty Employee

Insider Insight: Will the return of in-person auctions crash Bring a Trailer's party? | Hagerty Media

You might have heard that online collector car auction platforms are having a bit of a moment. Car enthusiasts, stuck at home for much of 2020, bid online at an unprecedented rate. The biggest and best-known site, Bring a Trailer, sold more than $400M in classic cars last year.
https://www.hagerty.com/media/market-trends/hagerty-insider/insider-insight-will-the-return-of-in-pe...
8 REPLIES 8
OLDERbastard1
Detailer

HHHhhhhhmmmmmmm. Interesting article.
hyperv6
Gearhead

Depends on the car. High end high profile cars will still go to auction. But the average cars that make up the fill at auctions will remain on line.

If you have a very rare and exclusive car the marketing is what brings out the buyers. But if you have a nice but average Impala SS you don’t need the publicity or the added shipping cost.

Just depends on what you are selling. Now this in the end will still hurt the live auctions.
az57chevy
Pit Crew

I am impressed by the comments that are posted by the followers. Pretty knowledgeable group of fans. Plus BAT does bring out and sell some high dollar exotics. With a reserve, the seller can always be protected. Wonder how the new owners of BAT will handle the site.
Cheetah8
Pit Crew

On the other side of the coin, when I contacted BaT about consigning my ex Alan Green Chevrolet, Bill Thomas Cheetah, it took them 2 weeks to get back to me. Then when they did they weren't really interested unless I was was willing to do a no reserve. This is a car with a known history and FIA documentation.
MariaRemarque
New Driver

I love reading the comments on BaT. In general they are a very knowledgeable group.

BaT skews towards sports cars and the unusual. I'm guessing they turn down far more cars than they accept.

The buyer's premium is only 5% with a minimum of $250, and capped at $5,000. It's only $99 to list ($250 premium).

I recommended the site to my brother, who wanted to sell a 1978 International Loadstar. A rare crew cab, it was a solid low-mile truck with some minor issues. I also recommended that he sell it at no reserve.

He documented the issues and took dozens of photos, and worked with the BaT staff on the listing. During the week long auction, my brother answered any questions that were posted in the comments.

It brought more than expected and probably twice what we would have gotten locally. Some wanted it as a work truck, but the winning bidder was a well-known car collector who was going to restore it and use it as a car transporter.
RW68RSConv
Intermediate Driver

I followed Bring-a-Trailer well before they launched online auctions. They fixed everything wrong with the typical online auction from the start.The community that follows each auction is experienced and insightful. I've had friends sell 6 figure cars and they thought the experience was excellent, better than other sites and better than live. I have no affiliation to BaT but I only see them continuing to be a premier auction site and continuing to grow. They will be my first choice.
ChevyDave
Intermediate Driver

IMO, one of the biggest turn-offs to BAT is the almost complete lack of moderation in the comments. I’m not talking about objectionable content, but rather the non-stop stream of inane, non-relevant comments that typically occur in the last two-minutes of the auction - particularly when a high-dollar car is involved - which BAT does nothing to suppress. Many of these comments/commenters seem solely interested in the number of “thumbs-up” reactions they can acquire and during yesterday’s RS200 Evo auction https://bringatrailer.com/listing/1986-ford-rs200-3/ the problem was so bad it completely froze my phone. Had I been a bidder or were I a collector of high-dollar autos, it would drive me crazy (I have purchased a much less valuable car on BAT where this wasn’t a problem btw); it would literally be like people at Mecum asking the auctioneer if the AC blew cold right before the hammer fell. We know BAT can mute these spurious comments - we’ve seen it in a few mega-dollar auctions previously - but why they don’t do it more in the last minute or two of each auction is a head-scratcher to me.
PSguy
New Driver

I totally agree. What cracks me up is that nine times out of 10 the people offering their stupid comments or asking stupid questions are not even serious bidders.