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Used Cars: Market is Red Hot, Experts Say

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Used Cars (Pictured: 2010 Toyota Prius)

Fresh statistical research has found that used car inventories will be smaller in 2013 than originally thought. Because so many consumers are holding on to their cars, used lots have fewer cars for sale, and private sellers are able to ask more for their used cars. Another trend that seems to be sweeping the used cars’ industry is Internet listings by private sellers. Some experts predict that within 5 years, the standard way to purchase a used car will be via an online seller or listing service.

Used Cars: Video

Car dealers say that one of the most effective ways to prep used cars for sale is to steam-clean the engine. There is no better way to remove gunk, debris, grease, and dirt from an engine compartment than steam cleaning. Used cars’ engines look almost like new afterward. Though the process itself will not necessarily improve engine performance, it will alert you to any loose parts and will possibly remove harmful junk that has lodged itself inside the compartment. The video clip above uses a specific product, but keep in mind that you can buy or rent numerous brands of cleaning equipment to do the job, so please do not take this video as a specific brand endorsement. We show it here just to illustrate the process.

Used Cars: Amazing Factoids

National U.S. data for the sales of used cars shows what a huge piece of the economy the business comprises. Consider this: For just one month in 2012 (July), the value of used cars sold in the U.S. was $43.4 billion. And that is just for one month! Even more intriguing, of that total, franchised auto dealers only accounted for about half the dollar value of used cars sold, while independent dealers and private parties each accounted for approximately one-quarter of the total. Used cars are a massive part of the American economy.

Larry Bell writes about cars, gadgets, business, and history. He has been a professional writer and editor for over 20 years and enjoys all car-related topics, especially electric and hybrid vehicle news. Larry covers the auto industry for MPA and often reports live from the floor of major shows in Detroit, LA, San Francisco, Phoenix, Las Vegas and elsewhere.

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