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Selling a Car in Los Angeles, Where Vehicles are Plentiful

Most people when they start thinking about selling a used car begin to wonder, “Is there a buyer nearby?”

Especially in the Los Angeles metropolitan area, where up to 17 million people live within about 4,850 square miles.

Used car sales aren’t always the most lucrative, so how does someone who is trying to sell a car in Thousand Oaks market to someone in Irvine?

Los Angeles skyline at night

Selling a Car Can be Expensive

Obviously, selling a used vehicle is easier when the two parties involved can meet, look at the car and go for a test drive.

That isn’t always easy when selling a car in Los Angeles. Driving to meet prospective customers means shelling out gas money.

Governmental bureaucrats refer to the area reaching from Ventura County to the southwestern area of San Bernardino County as Greater Los Angeles.

Greater Los Angeles contains more than 14 million drivers – an estimated 3.1 vehicles per household.

That’s good and bad when you’re selling a used car. 

Good because it’s a huge market and that increases the odds that someone out there will want your year, make and model.

Bad because the odds are also good that someone else has exactly the same car for sale that you offer – possibly in better condition, and probably with a lower price tag.

Most Popular Cars in Los Angeles

Selling a car in Los Angeles successfully means pricing accordingly, for a start it’s nice to know which cars Angelenos prefer.

A limo with a red carpetThere are several sources that keep track of this, and in general, the Toyota Camry is the top seller in the region (just like everywhere else), followed by the Ford F-Series truck (only in America) and Honda Accord.

Granted, these sales were logged at the end of 2007, so who knows how large trucks are faring as we near the end of 2008.

Other cars that sell well in Greater Los Angeles are the Honda Accord, Honda Civic, Toyota Corolla, Chevrolet Silverado, Nissan Altima, Dodge Caravan /Grand Caravan, Ford Mustang, and Chevrolet TrailBlazer.

Interestingly enough, the most-popular vehicle colors are silver, white and black. Seems rather amusing that such a diverse population prefers the most non-colorful hues for cars.

Maybe Angelenos believe the rumor that bright colors are more likely to attract the attention of law enforcement officers. When you have to drive a lot (and in the Los Angeles area this is generally the case) cutting the odds of getting pulled over is a good idea.

Our point is: learn whether your car is popular in the region, and price it accordingly.

Using Demographics in Your Favor

Selling a car in Los Angeles is easier if you take time to discover demographic traits and target your marketing appropriately.

A girl in a bikiniWhat someone in Pasadena prefers can differ greatly from the car a resident of Oxnard is looking for.

Some of the most affluent communities in America are in the Greater Los Angeles area, but sports and luxury cars like Mercedes-Benz and Porsche are not included in the top 10 top sellers there.

Probably because the size of the middle class dwarfs that of the poor, and the rich.

Think about what most people need in Los Angeles. Probably topping that list are good fuel economy and reliability, since public transportation is limited and commuters need dependable vehicles.

Today you’ll have a hard time selling a used car that gets 12 miles per gallon.

So make a list of your used car’s best traits, and push them hard when marketing the sale.

Great fuel economy and reliability are both strong selling points. So is maintenance, especially if you kept your service receipts.

On another front, Angelenos are known for a desire to look cool, so if your paint job is perfect, or you customized your vehicle, don’t forget to point that out.

Fourteen million drivers means at least that many cars. The trick is making yours stand out.

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