Thinking of buying used luxury cars? We spoke to top Indian auto experts to get a close understanding of the case and its hidden factors.
âUsed cars are the absolute sweet spot in the automotive market. While most luxury cars are imported and subject to high import duties upon purchase, it is the second-largest buyer who pays these costs, which explains the massive depreciation in price over the years. This makes used cars highly sought after in India, âsays Ishaan Bharadwaj, automotive expert and editor-in-chief of The racing monkey. According to a survey of the Indian used car market commissioned by Volkswagen India from Frost & Sullivan, by fiscal year 2025, organized platforms will contribute 45% of the total Indian used car market. It also indicates a shift towards organized players offering better financing options to differentiate themselves from unorganized players and strong demand for used cars in Tier 2, Tier 3 and rural markets.
Facts to know
Here’s what you need to keep in mind before you consider buying used luxury cars, according to Bharadwaj.
âMake sure all the documents for the car, including registration, insurance, tax receipts and maintenance records, are in place. Periodic maintenance is extremely important, regardless of the odometer count. Make sure that all service and part replacements are performed according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Finally, the condition of the tires and the alignment of the wheels.
He added: âIt is also essential to do a thorough check of all the technology on board, just to make sure that no errors are displayed on the dashboard. Electronic fasteners can be expensive â. And finally, the corrosion of the base and the quality of the paint. âAny difference in color means the car has been repaired and the panel has been refurbished. “
Authorized resellers, always
âIt is very important to know from whom and where you are buying your used car,â says Ashish Merchant, partner at Brokerdalal Premium, one of Mumbai’s leading luxury used car dealers. âA good dealership filters out customers and that will affect the car sold. We prefer to buy cars from end users such as the city’s top business owners. The advantage of this is that the cars are generally well maintained, âemphasizes Merchant while emphasizing that non-flooded, non-tampered with and non-accidental cars are essential.
BMW and Mercedes-Benz currently dominate the used car market, according to Merchant. âAs a dealer, we save around Rs 25 to 30 lakh in a few years after purchasing your car. So you would have a car worth Rs 60 lakh, which would come to you at Rs 40 lakh, in the first two or three years. The fees charged are currently quite high, but with a used car you can write them off, âMerchant concludes, citing the example of Indian consumers paying 100% tax on CBUs, which often makes them unaffordable. This depreciation turns out to be a great incentive for buyers due to affordability.
The big names in the game
If you haven’t heard it before, the Mercedes-Benz Marketplace is a direct customer-to-customer platform offering great prices for sellers, a larger inventory of certified vehicles, and absolute transparency. With this, the automaker will help develop the used car industry by encouraging Mercedes-Benz owners / other brand owners to switch to a new or used Mercedes-Benz.
Likewise, there’s Audi Approved: Plus, the used car division of Audi India, available to customers as a showroom experience as well as on a digital platform. There are 7 Audi Approved: Plus facilities across the country with doubling plans in the near future. An Audi spokesperson explains: âWe often see entry-level customers looking to buy used luxury cars with a strong value proposition. Our used car business has grown steadily and is an important part of our overall business strategy. We clearly aim to sell each car twice, if not more. “
Another prominent player in the market is Das WeltAuto, Volkswagen’s used car sales platform with an impressive reach of 105 outlets in India. With its comprehensive multi-point inspection and digitally equipped services, DWA is a platform for buying, trading or selling used cars, complemented by the DWA Valuator app and dealer centers.
âThe growth of the Indian used car market is being driven by rural and tier 2 and 3 cities in India, particularly with the entry of manufacturer-backed channels. In combination with attractive financing options, this market will grow exponentially over the next 4-5 years, âconcludes Kaushik Madhavan, Vice President, Mobility (Automotive & Transportation) Practice, Frost & Sullivan.
All images: Courtesy of Shutterstock