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Buyers market now?

13 September 2001
Lake Mathews (Corona), Ca
With the economy and consumer confidence sliding downhill with no let up in sight, would it be logical to assume that used NSX prices will be falling fast and soon (law of supply and demand). In your opinion, is inventory growing and moving slower? I'm particularly interested in 91/92 year models with 60 to 80K miles in very good (well maintained) condition. I'm just not sure if now is the right time to buy. I'm already feeling some softness (10%+ discount) in the used market just in the last month or so. Prior to that it was "take it or leave it, I'll just sell it to the next guy". But now attitudes are changing. Does the buyer have leverage now? How much lower could it go? What do you think?
I don't see any change at all in the '91-92 NSX's. They are already a bargain, with nice examples priced in the low to mid thirties, as they have been for the past five years. There are LOTS of buyers ready to jump in if the prices drop a few grand. I just don't see any change there.

Prices of the '97+ models, though, may be affected. They've been dropping over the course of the past six months and you can now find some in the mid to upper fifties, whereas a year ago you had to pay over sixty.
If I was offered twice the blue book on my 94, I still would not sell it. 3x or above, however, becomes a problem. Fortunately, this is an issue that deserves no further thought.
Absolutely it is. It is the end of the summer plus a new body style is on the horizon. As far as auction results go (dealer cost) 97' targas with about 20K miles are going for about 47-48 grand; 98' targas are going between 54-60; 99's from 60-62; and the 99 zanardi's are basically going for nothing (50K range)

I would consider any one of those numbers a steal. Earlier this summer, I purchased a yellow 98' targa and it literally took me forever to find one (I got lucky) so I ended up stepping up to it for $68,500 (which was rather high retail)

Thus, I would consider most of the deals I am seeing posted around now a really good deal. Remember thou, it is only a good deal if the car is exactly what you want. I would really suggest more than anything else- finding someone that has already done the comptech stuff and what not because otherwise it will never get done.

If anyone wants, I can post dealer auction results for the NSX or any other high line car you want every week on the forum.
There's a yellow 97 on Ebay right now for 50k, and nobody has bid on it yet. A few months ago this was a 57k car easy.

It might still wind up selling for $57K - or more, for all we know right now. Check it out when the auction is over.
I just picked up a '91 three months ago and prices seem to have held steady, even here in silicon valley where dot com millionaires are dropping like flies.

Before buying my NSX, I tracked 993 P-cars for a year. talk about no depreciation...
eBay is about the worst place on the planet to try and determine true fair market value for anything.

"But that's the very definition of fair market value, Lud!"

Really? Would YOU buy a $60k car via e-bay sight unseen? I wouldn't even bid $40k on a '97+ NSX on eBay unless I knew the car and/or the seller.

And how many copies of the NSX hardback book still available brand new from motorbooks.com for $20 have sold for $50+?

[This message has been edited by Lud (edited 21 September 2001).]
Lud it is a given that anyone buying any car on Ebay would have the car checked out by a reputable source. What kind of idiot would pay 50k for a car and not fly out and inspect it before purchase. Buying on Ebay should be viewed the same as buying off of autotrader, classifieds2000, cars, or hemmings. Crooked dealers and people advertise in all these sources.
Most of the NSX's I have seen on eBay are posted by private parties that are looking for an extra 5 grand over whatever their local dealer offered them. Thus, I wouldn't have a problem bidding on a car on eBay at all. Most vehicles in this range are sold due to financial reasons, not mechanical issues in my experience. Almost every car has a story- and a loan to go with it.

I would suggest only doing it thou if it is clearly stated that the seller will let you out of the sale if upon inspection you have any issues. Auctions asking for non-refundable deposits or wire transfers in 24 hours are a sham and a half in my book. Unless someone comes along that is really stupid the car is not going anywhere anyway.

All in all however, I find eBay to be an excellent source; and I've bought and sold more than one car over the internet-many of which were sight unseen up until the day of delivery and inspection.

It is importent to note that when good deals come up it is importent to move on them. I once purchased a car for 20K under dealer trade-in value on eBay just because I was the first one to click buy it now- sight unseen- while everyone else was telling their best friend's mother about how great of a deal this car on eBay was that their friend's dog saw the other night.

Happy bidding and good luck.
sabashiokaki - You say it is a given, etc. but that is not true. Right after you posted that, ravetek posted he's bought cars sight unseen. I know several people who have purchased high-dollar used cars sight unseen and never had it inspected by themselves or a third party. Some of them have gotten really burned. You may say they are idiots, but that doesn't change the fact that people do it.

ravetek is right that unless you have the option to pass on the sale if you find problems upon inspection, you should not proceed. But few of the NSXs for sale on eBay offer that - most want at least a nonrefundable deposit right away. So by setting up a sales deal skewed totally towards the seller, the average bid amounts will be lower than "fair market value" because many real potential buyers will be scared off of those cars.

And, if they do have it inspected and find problems before the auction ends, the buyer and seller may agree to a lower price than it would otherwise go for. Then the buyer may place a bid in the agreed amount and the seller then either ends the auction early at that price or cancells the auction with them as the high bidder. So once again the price you see on eBay does not reflect real-world pricing for a "clean" car.

The same goes for regular car auctions. Cars are a commodity at those auctions and volume buyers know that X percent of them will need Y dollars on average to be in "top" shape. That's why cars at auction are cheaper than other places. On average it will work out, but if you only buy a few cars that way (through a friend, etc.) then you have the chance to get really lucky by getting a mint car that needs nothing, but you also run the risk of getting burned by one that is a basket case.

And yes, there are PLENTY of '97+ NSXs that have serious problems on the used car market.
Ravetek, I didn't intend to start a debate on the merits of buying on e-bay, however, I would be interested in auction sales for early model NSXs. I understand that there are wide variations in the condition of these cars, and therefore, their ultimate value. But even a range would be more information than I currently have when negotiating with dealers who buy from such auctions. If you don't mind, you can send the data to me directly at [email protected]. Thanks in advance, Mark.
I don't know that the actual numbers really matters, my contention is simply that online services like eBay are not, in general, a reliable way to determine current market value for "specialty" cars because of the nature of the electronic marketplace vs. the need to physically inspect the condition of the car.

Though I would be interested to see the URLs of the 10 NSXs you say are currently on eBay explicitly offering a full refund on the deposit or purchase price, because I couldn't even find five of them.

Of course that's all just my opinion... but I have gone through the process of a nation-wide search and purchase of a "specialty" car more than once.

[This message has been edited by Lud (edited 21 September 2001).]
My hunch is that the MAJORITY of cars (NSX's included) on e-bay are bought without any sort of prior inspection. Suspect that MANY people have been burned buying cars this way. I'm constantly amazed at the number of bids that many NSX's seem to generate on e-bay.

[This message has been edited by westernb4 (edited 21 September 2001).]
I had agreed to purchase a NSX off of Ebay, but it did not pass inspection. The dealer did ask me for a deposit to hold the car, but agreed that I could have someone (Mark Basch) inspect it first. Turns out he was a somewhat shady dealer.

I had another Ebay NSX checked out from a Lexus dealer in Houston which turned out to be perfect, but passed because I couldn't take the time off to fly down there and drive it home. I ultimately found my car off of classifieds2000.com.

My opinion is that Ebay is an excellent source for used cars. Just don't always trust what you read in the auction.
Originally posted by nsxtasy:
There's a yellow 97 on Ebay right now for 50k, and nobody has bid on it yet. A few months ago this was a 57k car easy.

It might still wind up selling for $57K - or more, for all we know right now. Check it out when the auction is over.
Originally posted by nsxtasy:
There's a yellow 97 on Ebay right now for 50k, and nobody has bid on it yet. A few months ago this was a 57k car easy.

It might still wind up selling for $57K - or more, for all we know right now. Check it out when the auction is over.

Hey guys... I just saw this 97 yellow NSX posted at a restaurant for 50K... it was a printout on a bulletin board same picture
mileage etc... must be the same car...
I'm in Boston if anyone needs me to help
inspect the car...
I'm no 100% positive but I remember seeing this same car listed somewhere (maybe a prior listing on ebay) that stated that one of the doors (passenger?) had been hit and repainted. Of course, the current listing doesn't mention that but I'd make sure this isn't the same car before bidding on it. Just my .02.