At Manheim we understand the terms used when buying or selling at auction aren’t always familiar to everyone. Automotive and automotive auction jargon can be confusing, which can make the whole auction process a little daunting.
We want you to feel comfortable when buying at auction so we have put together a list of terms so you can be well informed before heading to an auction.
Auctioneer – trained professional up on the ‘rostrum’ (see below for term). The Auctioneer will start the sale of a lot by describing the item and will get the bidding started. Throughout the process of the auction, the Auctioneer will call the bids and announce when the item is sold or, if the item doesn’t meet reserve when it is ‘passed in’ (see below for term).
Bid – when a potential buyer signals the Auctioneer they wish to put in the amount he is asking.
Bid Increment – the amount by which the Auctioneer increases the bidding. For instance, if the bidding opens at $5000, subsequent bids of $5500, $6000, $6500, etc. would follow. The figure is generally rounded up or down at the Auctioneer’s discretion.
BidNow – an online timed auction service which is a convenient way to bid on vehicles in an online-only auction 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Vehicles are listed in silent, time-based auctions and bids are placed until the auction closing time is reached. You can submit a maximum bid and our system will bid for you and if another bidder outbids you, we’ll send you an email notification once this has occurred. If you’re successful, we’ll automatically email you an invoice which you are obligated to pay.
Buyer Number – this number will allow you to bid on vehicles at any Manheim public auction being held on that day. You will need to apply for a new number for each auction location on the day you attend. There is no cost involved in registering to bid and you are under no obligation to bid once you receive a buyer number, however you cannot bid on a vehicle without this number.
Block – the auctioneering and business transaction station in each auction lane.
Block Clerk – the person who records transaction information in the lanes.
Buy Back Guarantee – an exclusive product you can purchase that allows you to return the vehicle, for any reason, for a full refund within five business days. It is designed to give you the comfort and confidence to buy from Manheim auctions. At this stage, the Buy Back Guarantee is available on all vehicles (unless otherwise stated) sold in the Super Saturday Public Auction (Manheim Melbourne and Manheim Sydney), Tradie Day Auctions (Manheim Melbourne and Manheim Brisbane) and on all vehicles sold in our weekly Passenger and Commercial vehicle auction in Adelaide. For more information refer to our website.
BuyNow – at Manheim locations there are vehicles available for immediate purchase. You can select from a great range of vehicles including sedan, hatch, station wagon, utility (ute), SUV and 4WD, many are government and end of lease cars which are late model, low km’s and some even come with the balance of new car warranty. With BuyNow, not only do you get the ease and convenience of purchasing a vehicle ready to take home, you also save time and money. The fixed price for BuyNow vehicles includes all fees, charges and GST. It excludes stamp duty and any government charges.
Buyer’s Fee – a fee paid to the auction house by the winning bidder. The amount of the fee varies by auction.
Buyer Registration Card – the form a potential buyer is required to fill out to register to buy and obtain a buyer number (see above for term).
Clearance – vehicles can be any passenger vehicle with an estimated value under $5,000. A typical clearance vehicle would be an older model or higher mileage used car.
Commercial – vehicles are predominantly utes and vans. Normally used for trade and commercial use. Commercial vehicles include single and dual cab utilities, cab chassis, tray tops, those with canopies, mini buses and transit vans.
Condition Report – a written description of the condition of an item, prepared by Manheim before the auction.
Dealer Only – these are auctions open to Licensed Motor Vehicle Dealers only.
Deposit – a sum payable as a first instalment on the purchase of the car or item. A deposit may be required at the time of the sale at auction.
End of Lease – cars that have been used by fleet and lease companies. They are generally less than three years old, well maintained and have had only one owner. These vehicles can be any make or model.
Government – vehicles that have been used by a state or federal government department or a local council. Government vehicles are often late models and some even have the balance of new car warranty. These cars are generally sedans, hatches, SUVs and station wagons.
Inspected write off – a car that was listed as repairable on the Written Off Vehicle Register (WOVR) and was fixed & validated by the Vehicle Identity Validation (VIV) inspector to be registered and used on the road again.
Lane – the passageway in front of the auctioneer where the vehicle travels to the block to be offered for sale. Our auction lanes are listed in numeric order 1, 2, 3 etc.
Lot – an individual vehicle or item offered for sale at auction as a single unit.
Motorcycles – auctions include all types of motorcycles, such as postie bikes, quad bikes, road bikes, cruisers, roadsters and dirt bikes.
Online Auction – an auction held on the internet via our ‘Simulcast’ software (see below for term).
Passed In/Unsold – terms used by the auctioneer when an item fails to reach its reserve price at auction.
Prestige – auctions include late model luxury vehicles from prestige makes. Makes vary but can include: Audi, BMW, Chrysler, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche and Range Rover etc.
Recreation Vehicles and Marine – auctions include all types of caravans, boats and jet skis.
Referral – This happens when the bids have not met the reserve price set by the seller. The highest bidder wins the right to negotiate with the seller via a Manheim team member. This gives Manheim the opportunity to consult the seller with the best offer on the item and gives them the opportunity to accept or decline the offer.
Reserve or Reserve Price – is the confidential minimum price agreed upon between the seller and Manheim. If bidding ends before the reserve is reached, the item will not be sold but will be negotiated. The reserve is never disclosed.
Repossessions – these vehicles are owned by finance institutions and banks. They can be any make or model.
Rostrum – the raised platform the Auctioneer conducts the auction from.
Sale – a sale is final when the item is sold under the hammer during the auction.
Salvage – vehicles are damaged cars or other items. They can be sedans, hatches, station wagons, utes, SUV’s, commercial vehicles and even trucks and machinery. The type and degree of damage varies and can include accident damage, storm, hail or flood damage.
Simulcast Auction – a live auction that is simultaneously transmitted online so buyers can watch and bid in real time from wherever they are, and on any device, without having to attend in person.
Statutory Write Off vs Repairable Write Off – all salvage vehicles are checked on the ‘WOVR’ (Written Off Vehicle Register). A Statutory Write Off vehicle is recorded on the WOVR and cannot be registered in Australia. Repairable Write Offs can be registered, provided the vehicle has been satisfactorily repaired (except NSW). Each vehicle clearly marked.
SUV & 4WD – now covers 4×2 and 4WD vehicles with maximum power, towing capacity and off-road capability, SUV vehicles that list maximum passenger and cargo capacity, comfort and style among their features and people movers designed to seat seven or more.
Truck, Trailers & Machinery – auctions include trucks, trailers, machinery, plant & equipment and general goods as well as recreation items.
Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) – a 17-digit mixture of letters and numbers that identifies an individual vehicle. In cars it is located on the driver side of the dashboard at the base where the windshield glass and dashboard meet. In trucks it is located on the side panel of the door.
WOVR – Written off vehicle register. A nationwide register of all vehicles that have been written off.