DealShield offers extra protection to Manheim auction buyers

Manheim MustangDealers buying vehicles at Manheim auctions can rest easier.

That’s because the Pennsylvania-based auction company recently introduced a product that allows dealers to return vehicles to the auction they were bought from for a full refund, including buyer’s fees.

The product, known as DealShield, gives buyers of most vehicles sold at Manheim auctions the opportunity to return vehicles for any reason. DealShield operates as a sister company to Manheim.

“The mission was to improve the confidence in the marketplace,” says Stu Dressler, DealShield’s interim COO. “What product would provide buyers with confidence on the lanes?”

The idea was hatched in 2011 by DealShield founder Matt Trapp, who observed that dealers, unlike retail consumers, are often required to act fast and make quick decisions when buying at auction.

The program is a way Manheim is trying to guarantee the value of the cars on their lanes in a business where, historically, buyers have “bought with their eyes” and the notion of “buyer beware” applied.

The auction company began testing the service at its Statesville, NC, facility in 2012 and rolled it out nationwide in September.

DealShield covers up to 97 percent of vehicles crossing the lanes at Manheim locations, the company says. Vehicles that don’t qualify tend to be higher risk vehicles that would be out- of-the-norm purchases for most dealers anyway, such as salvage vehicles, pre-1995 models, or cars with extremely high mileage or price tags.

Buyers can opt for coverage for individual vehicles or sign onto the DealShield360° program, which provides purchase guarantees on all vehicles and carries no up-front charge.

For more on this story, see Greenlight Remarketing magazine, available at some auctions, or the online PDF at the Inside Lane blog.

– Alex Kwanten

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