Top Tips to Buying a Classic Car at Online Auctions


The collector automobile hobby is big business across the world, with classic car auctions taking the lead. SalvageBid and other leading car auctions online hold classic car auctions throughout the year where you can find beauties from different eras, brands, and countries. If you are a budding classic car enthusiast looking for pro tips to help you hit the ground running, this blog arms you with tips on how best to land a good deal.

Set a Budget

The forces of supply and demand take centerstage at car auctions online. It is easy to overshoot your budget when bidding on car that is being targeted by many bidders. Setting a budget ensures that you don’t get caught up in the moment and set aside money for any additional expenses associated with the transportation, restoration, and registration of the vehicle.

Lookout for Red Flags

While inspecting the classic cars on your shortlist, make sure to watch out for red flags. If you are not knowledgeable about cars, hire a mechanic or professional pre-purchase inspection service. Some of the red flags to watch out for include:


You must only buy a classic car that you can restore successfully unless you are in it for the parts. Look underneath the car and doors, as well as inside rocker panels and fenders for any signs of rot. Walk around the car looking for bubbles on the body. Only go for a car at car auctions online if it has little to no signs of rot.

VIN and Date Codes

It is advisable to go for a ‘numbers matching’ car when you go shopping at classic car auctions. There must be a link between vehicle’s VIN and the Date Codes on parts such as the transmission and rear axle. Look for the last 6 digits of your vehicle VIN on the motor and also check the date codes to make sure they match up with the car.

Noise, Smoke, And Vibrating

If the car runs, take it for a spin to ascertain the condition of the engine. Red flags that you may come across during a test drive include the vehicle emitting tons of white smoke and noises from the valve trans. Such a car will demand expensive repairs to get back on the road. Another sign that the car has a critical problem is the death wobble that occurs as you pick up speed.

Register to Bid

Participating in car auctions online is easy and convenient. SalvageBid conducts classic car auctions throughout the year for classic car enthusiasts and dealers. Browse through available classic cars and Register to start bidding on the one you wish to buy. Call us to get answers to your questions on registration, bidding, vehicle inspection, payment options, and shipping. You can reach us at +1 360 347 1300 or mail to

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