Price Any Car: Car Price Guide

How to Value a Used Car will provide you with a free car valuation and a lot of background information, but  how do you use it to get a realistic valuation? 

All valuations are subjective - after all, a car is only worth what someone is willing to pay for it. The key is to do your research and get a good idea of hat the market conditions are.

First things first, Get a free valuation from Price Any Car with our free, fast and easy to use service.

Step-by-step guide to getting a realistic used car value:

1) Describe your vehicle exactly.

2) Be realistic about the condition.

3) Understand the used valuation definitions.

4) Make sure you use a reputable independent source.

Complete vehicle description

These are the minimum details required to get a valuation:

• Make (e.g. Ford)
• Model (e.g. Focus 2011–)
• Derivative trim (e.g. Zetec)
• Body style (e.g. five-door hatchback)
• Engine details (e.g. 1.6 TDCi DPF SS 115)
• Drive (e.g. two-wheel drive)
• Gearbox (e.g. six-speed manual)
• Year (e.g. 2011)
• Plate (e.g. 61)
• Mileage (to nearest thousand)
• Condition (clean or average)
• MOT certificate expiry date (if applicable)
• Road Fund Licence expiry date
• Colour  

Optional extras

Has the vehicle got any non-standard extras? If so they could make it worth more. The most common ones to look out for are:

• Metallic paint
• Wheels (larger/special alloys)
• Trim (leather)
• Enhanced displays (satnav, DAB radio)
• Xenon headlights

Additional description information

Other pieces of information that you may also wish to take into account at this stage are:

• Road Fund licence cost
• Mpg figures
• Insurance group
• CO2 output

How do I evaluate the condition of a car?

Ask most people what condition their car is in and you get the response “average”. To the trade this is great news as it may allow them to bid lower. A car’s condition should be linked to its age and mileage.

Buying tip – do your research. Know every-thing about the car before you buy.

Vehicle appraisal is an extremely skilled job, and can take years to perfect. This is why many people recommend using a professional outfit, such as the AA or RAC, to give a car the once over before you buy, but this comes at a price. Of course most private individuals will wing it, allowing the trade to take advantage.

Condition definitions

Each publication or website uses different definitions for vehicle condition, which results in confusing people more than ever. Whatever the definitions, it’s best to cut them down to four simple categories.


• This car should be almost as new and require no work whatsoever.


• Full service history, an MOT certificate and very minor or no work needed to the wheels, paint or bodywork. The car will be mechanically sound, and in a popular colour.


• The car will have some service history, an MOT certificate, and perhaps a less popular colour/trim combination. It is likely to be sound mechanically, but the wheels, paint or bodywork may need attention. It will require some profes-sional attention to bring it up to clean standard.

Poor/below average

• The car is unlikely to have any service history or an MOT certificate. It will be in poor condition all round. Consider-able work will need to be done to the wheels, paintwork and body. It may also have some mechanical problems.