Auction Car Shipping Guide In 2023

Have you ever thought that almost eleven million cars are sold at auctions every year? Even though most of them are sold at the largest and most popular auctions like Manheim, Copart, IAAI. And a lot of these cars need auction car shipping services

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best auction auto transport

If you are a proud owner of collector’s vehicles or are only planning on purchasing the vehicle at an auction, this article is exactly what you need. We gathered the most important facts and details about some of the most popular auctions, ways of shipping cars from auctions, and of course price for shipping.

You can click on the following points to find the exact information or look through the whole article:

How to ship a car from the auction?
What documents are required for auction car shipping?
How much does it cost to ship a car from an auction?
Shipping inoperable vehicles from auctions
What company to choose to move a car from an auction?
Top 5 best auctions to buy a car
Auction car shipping for dealers
Auction car transport

How To Ship A Car From The Auction?

How Does The Car Shipping Process Work?

Car Shipping is a service provided by auto transport companies in order to help people move different kinds of vehicles within the US (including overseas territories) and internationally. 

Car transportation is a very easy process if you deal with the best shipping company. To have your car transported from the auction to your location, you only need to request a quote (you can do it here) from the 5-star shipping companies, choose one of them and negotiate the dates. 

how auction car shipping works Auction Car Shipping Guide In 2023 3

Info required to make a quote

At first, the only information that is requested is the year, make, model, and condition (operable or inoperable) of the vehicle, pick-up, and delivery zip-codes, and also your contact information (name, email, phone number).

After you choose to proceed and place an order with the exact company, you will need to provide exact pick-up and delivery addresses as most of the carrier companies provide door-to-door delivery. 

Searching for a carrier and shipping process

When you close the deal with the auction and finalize the purchase, the carrier company will check the available drivers on your route and assign one of them to your order. He will go to the auction location on the negotiated date, load the vehicle, and head to your delivery address.

A day before the delivery, the driver will call you (or the person who will be at the drop-off location) to negotiate the exact time. Once he is in the area, he will call once again to make sure everything is fine and he can drop off the vehicle as negotiated. 

When the driver arrives, he will load the vehicle off the trailer. After that you have to check the vehicle for any damages and if you notice anything you need to note them down in the Bill of Lading.

If the damage is new and it wasn’t noted down in the Bill of Lading at the time of the pick-up, you need to contact your shipping company and they will help you submit a claim to the carrier’s insurance company. Please note, that if you do not fill in the Bill of Lading at the drop-off location, the insurance company will reject the claim. 

What Documents Are Required For Auction Car Shipping?

You won an auction, found a reliable company, and finalized the deal with the auction. You are probably worried about everything going on as scheduled and wonder what to do next. 

So after you close the deal with an auction and pay for the vehicle, it’s high time to schedule an exact driver to pick up the car. To negotiate the deal with the driver and transport the vehicle the following details are required:

Your name, email address, phone number, and exact delivery address;
The address of the location where the vehicle is;
The buyer ID number;
Lot or stock number;
VIN code;
Gate pass (for Manheim only).
what info do you need to move a vehicle from the auction? Auction car shipping

Please note that without the buyer number, lot number, and VIN code the auction will not allow the driver to pick up the vehicle. 

How Much Does It Cost To Ship A Car From An Auction?

The shipping cost for moving an operable vehicle from an auction may differ a lot from the price for shipping the vehicle from any other location. Even though it also depends on the size of the vehicle, mileage, carrier availability, weather conditions, the time frame for shipping is limited. 

Since the cars going from auctions should be picked up within 1-2 days after a deal is confirmed, it affects the search for the carrier. Some routes are pretty popular and the driver can be found within a few hours, but if the route is not that popular, negotiating the price with the drivers may take a few days. And while waiting for a better shipping cost, storage fees may be applied. 

That is why in most cases the price for shipping the car from an auction may be higher than expected. To evade that, we advise you to check prices before the deal is confirmed so you will have a few extra days to schedule the driver and will have the lowest price available.

In the table below you can find the estimated rate for moving different kinds of vehicles:

average auction car shipping rates

Shipping Inoperable Vehicles From Auctions

This process may be quite complicated sometimes but definitely not for the top US companies we work with. 

The inoperable vehicle may be moved in 2 ways:

• Using a winch: if the vehicle runs, breaks, and steers but doesn’t start it can be loaded on the trailer using a winch. 

• Using a forklift: in case the vehicle has wheel issues or does not steer (cannot be put in neutral), the forklift is used to load the car on and off the trailer. Some auctions may offer the forklift service at the pick-up location, but once the vehicle is delivered to your location you will need to have a forklift to assist the driver with unloading. 

inoperable auto transport from the auction

What Company To Choose To Move A Car From An Auction?

When you are surfing the Internet looking for a company to move the vehicle from an auction, we advise you to avoid the companies that are advised by the auction. Shipping companies that are advised by the auction usually have a higher rate as they have to give some percentage to the auction authorities for the collaboration. 

auction auto transport rates

We advise you to request a quote from some of the top-rated companies and then choose one. By choosing a good company, you will be sure that your vehicle gets picked up on time and you will not have to pay storage fees waiting days for the driver to come. 

Of course, you may receive some extremely low quotes and will be tempted to proceed with them, but before booking and signing any documents, make sure they guarantee you the exact time frame and exact price, so the car will not get stuck at the auction location. 

Some great companies you can work with without any fear you can find in this top best auto transport companies.

Furthermore, when you are planning to ship a car, it’s important to mention what kind of trailer is required. If you are purchasing a luxury or antique vehicle in good condition, we would recommend an enclosed trailer. But you need to understand that enclosed trailers are more expensive and also harder to schedule on some routes, so you need to find a company before closing a deal with an auction.

On the other hand, enclosed trailers also have some advantages such as extended insurance coverage and the fact that your vehicle will not get exposed to weather conditions while being in transit.

For enclosed auto transport services you can check this top of companies.

enclosed auction car transport

Transportation companies we work with have all the necessary experience transporting vehicles and offer both open and enclosed shipping. Simply provide some details on the car, zip-codes for pick up and drop off here and you will get information from the top-rated companies within a few minutes.

Top 5 Best Auctions To Buy A Car

If you are planning to purchase a car online (whether from an auction or private seller), you need to pay attention to the following:

• The vehicle should have the Vin Number and it should be the same as on the photos of the advertisement. We advise you to ask your driver to ch double-check the win before picking up the car in order to avoid any misunderstanding;

• The advertisement should have photos of the vehicle from different angles. If there are no photos or only a couple of them, it’s better to pass on this car as there may be some details that the seller wants to hide;

• Choose only those auctions and marketplaces that you have heard about before and that have good reviews. 

By the way, we have checked the reviews and popularity of the US car auctions for you, and here is the list of the Top 5 US auto auctions:

top USA car auction list
World’s Greatest Collector Car Auctions by Barrett-Jackson;
Worldwide Auctioneers;
IAAI (Insurance Auto Auction, Inc.);

World’s Greatest Collector Car Auctions by Barrett-Jackson and Worldwide Auctioneers

World’s Greatest Collector Car Auctions by Barrett-Jackson and Worldwide Auctioneers (h3)

These auctions are the largest and the most popular auctions of the legendary automobiles. 

For more than fifty years, Barrett-Jackson has attracted car admirers from all over the country. World’s Greatest Collector Car Auctions give participants unique access to the most stunning cars in world history. Besides the auction itself, the events held by Barrett-Jackson also offer test rides, celebrity appearances, symposiums, and much more. We are totally sure you won’t regret visiting this auction!

Worldwide Auctioneers

If you are looking for collectibles such as pre-war vehicles, vintage muscle cars, or European race cars, Worldwide Auctioneers is exactly what you need to visit. These auctions offer the most extraordinary vehicles ever auctioned in the US and pay more attention to quality and emphasize customer satisfaction.

The auctions themselves include personal inspections, receptions, chances to test-drive a vehicle. Participating in the Worldwide Auctioneers auction is an unforgettable experience.

Manheim, Copart, and IAAI are the top 3 great auctions for those looking for modern cars that are more about the use, not the status. 


Manheim is the largest wholesale marketplace of used vehicles in the country. Almost all types of undamaged vehicles are available at this auction: motorcycles, cars, SUVs, pickup trucks, RVs and travel trailers, boats, different kinds of trucks, and even heavy equipment.

Besides that, you can buy the vehicle online or in person at one of the 75 Manheim locations. The auction also offers the service of assurance, financing, and reconditioning. 


Copart is another leader among the online auctions in the US. It specialized in the resale of all kinds of used, wholesale, and salvage vehicles. For the last year, Copart auctions have sold over 3 million vehicles and their website usually has almost 300 000 cars available so you definitely have something to choose from. 


IAAI is also a famous online auction but it sells only slightly damaged and clear-title vehicles. Besides that, the auction also sells parts of vehicles, so if you purchase a damaged vehicle you can also find a detail to repair it. IAAI also sells almost 3 million vehicles per year and you can find all the makes and models of sedans, motorcycles, SUVs, trucks, RVs, buses, and trailers.

Auction Сar Shipping For Dealers

If you are an owner of a dealership or you have a small business of repairing cars and then selling them, we have some great news for you. The companies we collaborate with have special offers from businesses like yours. 

For carrier companies, it is always more convenient to load and deliver all (or at least several) cars at one place, so they don’t have to spend time and gas traveling to different locations and negotiate time with lots of people. That is why they always offer a very nice discount for shipping several vehicles at a time so that the more cars you are transporting, the more profitable price you get for each vehicle.

Besides that, since the vehicles are going to a business location, companies usually do not request any kind of prepayment: a part of the total amount may be charged after pick up at an auction, and then the remaining balance is paid at the delivery address. Or you can also pay the total amount at the delivery. 

After requesting a quote with our website, you will get:

• The detailed information from the TOP shipping companies;

• Best prices you can ever find for a 5-star service; 

• A shipping agent that will find the best deal for you; 

• 24 / 7 customer support service keeping you updated with all the details of shipping.

Auction auto transport benefits for car dealer companies


What is the insurance coverage for vehicles that are shipped from auctions?

The insurance coverage does not depend on the place the vehicle is shipped from. For an open trailer, the insurance coverage varies from $100 000 to 200 000 and for an enclosed trailer insurance coverage is $250 000 per vehicle on the trailer.

Is it possible to deliver the inoperable vehicle right to the body shop instead of my house?

Yes, you can choose any address you need to deliver the vehicle to, but you need to provide it at the time of booking with the company since drivers plan their routes in advance. 

How many cars should I ship per month to have a special discount as a dealer?

It depends on the company you choose to collaborate with. We advise you to request a quote here and check it directly with each company. Sometimes, it starts from as low as 3-4 cars.

Are there any discounts for private buyers?

Yes, some companies offer discounts for military members, first-aid workers, and regular customers.

Can you ship my car from an auction to Alaska/Hawaii?

The vehicle from an auction can be shipped anywhere within the mainland, to overseas territories, and even internationally. We can provide you with any service you need.

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Best Auction Auto Transport [2022] - Compare Car Shipping
9 months ago

[…] you can ship your car yourself, but there are cases where this is not possible at this time. This is where the auction car shipping companies come […]


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