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8 Essential Tips for Buying a Car Online

The way we buy cars is evolving. It used to be that the only way to buy a car was to visit a car dealership or a used car showroom; however, in recent years things have changed as more methods of buying and selling cars have entered the scene.


No matter what your background or your lifestyle, buying a car online is becoming a popular way of car shopping. Particularly at this time, you may prefer not to visit a site. The good news is that many dealers have a range of options that have been put in place to support you remotely. From a more practical perspective, it offers everything you need – a showroom and often car financing options – within just a few convenient clicks.


It is now possible to pick and choose your ideal car online, getting everything you need, specified the way you want it. What is more, it is even possible to get it delivered directly to your doorstep or collect from the nearest dealership. Thanks to online showrooms, buying a car has never been easier, safer, or more convenient than it is today.

What are the Pros and Cons of Buying a Car Online?

Buying a car online is safe, comfortable, uncomplicated, and convenient. In the future, buying online is the way a large portion of the car market will go. It saves you valuable time and energy that you spend in visiting different dealerships or arranging car collection. But there are other significant benefits too.


You can compare savings from across the country with fixed prices, so there's no awkward haggling. It's quick and convenient. You can find and order your car, then apply for finance in just 30 minutes if you so wish. It gives you an option to choose from a bigger range, while freeing you from geographically restrictions, as most of the dealerships can deliver the car to you and offer a reasonable return policy.


The most significant disadvantage of buying a car online is not being able to drive and feel it before the purchase. But this problem can be solved by arranging a test drive or visiting manufacturer's virtual tours. If you do want to get behind the wheel, be sure to book an appointment in advance as vehicles are being thoroughly sanitised between customers to keep everyone safe and well.

Is it Safe to Buy a Car Online?

Fortunately, you are not purchasing a car online without backup and support from consumer organisations. In fact, due to how these work, there are more protections in place when you make an online purchase than when you buy a car 'face-to-face'.


While vehicles and other goods bought at retailers fall under the Consumer Rights Act, the Government has set out online consumer protection regulations in the Consumer Contracts Regulations (2013). Chief among the legislation included in this is that there's a 14-day 'cooling-off' period when a buyer can decide whether or not they want to keep the goods. Within the 14 days they can hand back the product with no questions asked. The law applies equally to both new and used cars.


In a current Covind-19 pandemic, most of the dealerships have social distancing measures in place. You can expect that all vehicles will be thoroughly sanitised before and after use, whether you are picking up from dealership or it is delivered to you. Watch this short video about Jardine Motors Group approach to vehicle sanitation.

How to Buy a Car Online

Here at Jardine Motors Group, we want to make it as easy as you to find the perfect car for you. If you're going to get your hands on your ideal vehicle as quickly as possible, the biggest question to ask is: how do you choose your dream car online?


We've put our heads together and collated some of our best tips and pieces of advice for purchasing your perfect vehicle.

Tip 1: Understand the Car You Want To Buy Online

As with all large purchases, before buying your car online, it is essential to do your research. For many people, buying a vehicle is not a small deal. Before thinking about purchasing a car online, it is vital to fully understand all the core elements that surround the decision you are about to make.


The good news is that everything you need to understand is easy to find out. Some of it is a personal preference, and most of the rest of the information will be listed online. You can be flexible in your buying journey and decide whether you want to refine your search by budget or type and make of a car.


The first thing you need to understand is about the make and model of the car. When choosing a car, nothing is more important than ensuring the car fits all of your needs. This means it is crucial to undertake the same level of research into various different types of cars that you would do if buying the car in person. Read reviews and get feedback from other drivers of the vehicle you are looking at purchasing, and make sure all the options are there that would make your car driving experience a satisfying one.


There is nothing too small when it comes to buying a car. If you want to have a car that has 5 doors, then make sure you are looking at cars with that option. If you want heated seats or an auxiliary port, then make sure you are including those elements as important ones in your car search. There is nothing that is too picky or small to be considered when buying a new car.


If possible, it is always a wise decision to ensure you have test driven the car before, just to make sure you have a pleased with it. For more information about picking the right car for you, you can visit our full guide to buying a car.

Tip 2: Research the Dealership, Company, Or Website You Are Buying Your Car From

When buying a car online, it is vital to buy from a reliable seller.  What this means is that it is a good idea to research the dealership and get an opinion of what they are like – whether that is through word-of-mouth or whether it is through online review sites. Always make sure the dealership you are purchasing a car from gets good reviews as it can help put your mind at rest when making a large purchase. 


Once you have found the car that you want, listed at a dealership you like the look of, the next step is to make sure that the showroom or company you are buying your car from lists everything you need to know about your new vehicle.


A lot of online dealers make this next task more manageable, as they allow for you to configure or filter options to get the specific model you want. If you are ever unsure, however, of what comes with a car or what a vehicle includes, then it is a simple task to call, live chat or email your questions to the dealer. They will be only too happy to help.

Tip 3: Get a Vehicle History Report

When you have chosen your car and your online dealership, you can always ask for a vehicle history report to fully understand the vehicle you are about to purchase. Having clear records is very important if you are buying a nearly new or used car.


Experian report is the standard for used vehicle history reports. The service provides a detailed report of how many owners a car has had. It will also review whether a vehicle had an accident. I can also include sales or transfers between different dealerships. Our dealerships will provide Experian reports for used cars to demonstrate transparency about the car's history, so you don't usually need to buy one yourself.

Tip 4: Think About Part Exchange

Your current car can be an incredibly valuable resource when wanting to purchase a new one. The fantastic news is that part exchanges are still possible when buying a car online. This means that if being able to part exchange your vehicle matters to you, then it is vital to make sure that the showroom or dealer you are buying from offers a part exchange option.


Part exchanging is often a large part to being able to purchase a car, so the right dealer will offer you a price on your old car to put toward something new and fresh. Some dealers can offer virtual appraisal tool so you can show the condition of your car with detailed photos to make sure you get a fair and accurate price.

Tip 5: Understand Your Financing Options

Once you have chosen your car, chosen your dealership, and understood if you can part-exchange then the next step is to research the various financing options available. When making decisions about large purchases, like when buying a car online, it is vital that you fully understand the financing options available – whether that is a car loan through a third party, through the dealer, or a personal loan from your bank. Alternatively, you may want to part exchange or move your current finance deal to your new car.


The great news is that getting car financing online is incredibly easy, and it is often just a few more clicks within the purchasing journey. Consider whether you wish to own the car at the end of the finance agreement, keep payments low with a balloon at the end or spread the cost evenly. Many websites will have a finance calculator so you can adjust the deposit and the term to find the right deal for you. Just make sure you choose the right finance scheme for you and your situation.


Aside from the base finances, one thing worth looking at is what kind of money-back guarantee or return policy is offered by the dealership or website. It is vital that you are happy with your car when it arrives, and a money-back guarantee or return policy can help ensure your complete satisfaction.

Tip 6: Consider Your Delivery Options

Once you have found the car you wanted, chose a reliable seller, understood your financing options, and got ready to purchase your car, there are a couple of basic ideas that are still worth considering. The first of these is around the delivery of the car.


When buying a car online, there are usually two different options available for you. The first is to pick the car up from the chosen dealership. Alternatively, it is often more convenient to get the car delivered to your home or place of work. This helps take the hassle out of having to pick your car up. Instead, you get it dropped off at your location. Simple as that

Tip 7: Read Through The Returns Policy

When buying a car online, always carefully read the return policy. Being able to return your car hassle-free is a considerable part of your buying satisfaction. It allows you to buy, safe in the knowledge that it will be the right car and the right deal for you


After your purchase, you will automatically have a 14-day 'cooling-off' period. If during that time, you do want to return a car, then you will need to check the small print to ensure there are no extra costs to pay when returning a vehicle. Buyers are liable for any damage and diminished value for the goods, that means car's mileage would be taken into consideration if you're intent on returning it.

Tip 8: Feel Free to Ask Questions

Making a large purchase can be a daunting experience, both online and in person. Never be afraid to ask people their opinions or help when choosing your ideal car. When browsing a car online, the sales assistant is always on hand to answer any queries you may have.

Always feel free to fire any questions off to the dealer, showroom, our website, or social media to make sure you make the most out of your purchasing journey.

In summary

That's it! Buying your car online couldn't be simpler!


Here at Jardine Motors Group, we have an extensive collection of experts on hand to answer any questions you may have about buying one of our cars online. No matter how big or small your question is, we are here to help make you finding your ideal a car as easy as possible.


No matter what kind of car you are after, we have a large selection available for purchase, with part exchange available and money-back guarantees on all of our cars. We want to help you find a car that suits your every need, for a price that is right for you. Why not visit our current brands, offering a buy online service: Aston MartinAudiBMWJaguar, Land Rover, Mercedes-Benz, MINI, Porsche, smart and Jardine Select.