Demonstration vehicles up for sale

Published: Sunday | January 13, 2013 Comments 0
Demonstration plates on a Mercedes-Benz. - File photo
Demonstration plates on a Mercedes-Benz. - File photo

Chad Bryan, Gleaner Writer

It is not uncommon to find demonstration vehicles - units used for test drives by potential customers at new car dealerships - being put up for sale at the end of the model year. Often times, they have been used as a salesperson's personal vehicle and can have a few hundred to several thousand kilometres or miles on the clock.

On the road, these vehicles are easily identified by their blue licence plates.

Kent LaCroix, chairman of the Automobile Dealers Association (ADA) noted that selling a demonstration vehicle early would be nonsensical and it makes more sense after the value has declined. "There is no specified period of time for when these vehicles can be sold. They can be sold at anytime. It does not make sense to sell it early. When it becomes more economically viable then we sell it," he said.

Howard Foster of Toyota Jamaica also seemed to echo LaCroix's sentiments on the issue. Toyota Jamaica recently advertised that a few of their models, a 2012 Toyota Hilux pickup, a Toyota Camry Hybrid, a 2010 Toyota Camry and a 2009 Daihatsu Terios sports utility vehicle are up for sale.

"Different dealers set different times as to when a vehicle can be sold. Sometimes two months but, for the most part under a year," he said. Demonstration vehicles usually tend to be discounted. Foster explained that from the vehicle's market value, discounts can be applied.

Finding a used car to compare with one of these vehicles is difficult, as one used car dealer pointed out that used car dealerships rarely stock pickups.

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