Vehicle grading will create more confusion, says CD Auction Group boss
21 September 2012
Author: Rachel Burgess
Plans to introduce a standardised, specific grading system for vehicle condition at auction are likely to cause more, not less, confusion in the market, according to the Roger Woodward, boss of CD Auction Group.
Woodward's comments come after the physical auction houses revealed plans to introduce a common grading system across National Association of Motor Auctions members, which excludes pure online auctions.
The grading system will be A to E or 1 to 5 and is scheduled for introduction this autumn. It was first announced by BusinessCar last month.
He continued that his company operated a specific grading system when it first went into online auctions more than 15 years ago, but dropped the idea after it led to disputes over interpretation.
Instead, the auction firm now uses high quality digital images and a detailed condition report to describe the vehicle up for sale.
"It's easy to assume that a specific grading system makes the vehicle condition clearer for buyers and vendors, but our many years' experience of online trading has proved it's not like that," said Woodward.
"Even with sophisticated software to back it up, one man's 'condition 3' can be another man's 'condition 5' and that means unhappy buyers and sellers.
"Forcing vehicles into specific categories can also reduce prices achieved because there's a natural tendency to downgrade if the true extent of any damage is not obvious."
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