Cars.com vs Kelley Blue Book

Kelley Blue Book Logo

It is now easier than ever to jumpstart your car research. Kelley Blue Book (KBB), the sister company of Autotrader, can help you find the value of your current car, a price for your next car, and so much more.

But just like KBB.com, there are several websites available to you to answer just about any question you may have about a car. Want to know the value of your car? You can find the answer online. Looking to sell your car? Find out how online. Ready to buy your next car? Get all your car questions answered online. You can find anything from specifications and photos to reviews and fair pricing.

Both Cars.com and Kelley Blue Book provide valuation information to consumers and the automotive industry. There are some commonalities between the two, but there are also some differences. Let’s highlight these differences, so you can better understand exactly how these valuations are calculated.

If you would rather move forward and get the value of your car, research a new or used car, or find a car for sale using that trusted Kelley Blue Book information, Autotrader is ready to help you right now.

About Cars.com.

Cars.com entered the digital auto marketplace in 1998. Since 1998, Cars.com has quickly emerged as one of the leading digital auto marketplace sites for car shoppers to visit for car research and classified listings. They help car shoppers connect with automotive retailers and private sellers. They also provide digital tools, resources, and data to help shoppers along their car research journey.

Black Book Vehicle Valuations.

When it comes to vehicle valuations, Cars.com uses Black Book. Black Book has been providing vehicle data and insights since 1955 and is a competitor to Kelley Blue Book. Dealers often use Black Book as a source to determine the used car price an owner might receive for their vehicle as a trade-in.

The Black Book used car values are calculated by considering the vehicle’s equipment, age, mileage, condition, vehicle transactions, and other factors to determine how much the car is worth. The Black Book value is basically the auction value or wholesale value of a car. Used car prices are updated on a weekly basis, plus they adjust their prices to reflect seasonal changes, regional factors and the ups, and downs of the auto market.

To get an estimate of a car’s value, Cars.com only asks for the Year, Make, Model, Style, Mileage, and ZIP. Then, specific equipment and condition information about the vehicle is automatically completed by the system, and you are provided with an estimated price range of what your car is worth. It is important to note that the estimated price range given is based on Black Book’s average to rough car condition.

There are a few divisions of Cars.com like Auto, PickupTrucks, NewCars, and RepairPal.

None of these sites are affiliated with Kelley Blue Book or Autotrader.

Valuation Comparisons

About Kelley Blue Book (KBB).

Kelley Blue Book has been considered the gold standard for vehicle pricing and estimated value for used vehicles consumers want to sell or trade. KBB.com is also known for helping car buyers learn what they should expect to pay for their next car.

Kelley Blue Book Vehicle Valuations

KBB ‘s data intelligence and valuation process utilize an enormous amount of data to determine car value and pricing. They start with more than 250 data sources which provide 3 trillion data points. They also use predictive analytics and industry and field analysis to review automotive trends. While this great data, they also use the following:

  • Regionalized values and pricing.
  • Economic conditions.
  • The current automotive market.
  • Seasonal changes in prices.
  • Car information: condition, trim, car age, car features, and mileage.

With all of this data, you can see how Kelley Blue Book provides the most current, market-reflective information. Their data-driven information inspires consumer trust and peace of mind. KBB.com generates 40 million unique pricing reports every month. Let’s look at the pricing reports Kelley Blue Book offers.

Used Car Value Reports:

Trade-In Value: The amount you can expect to receive when trading a car at a dealership.

Used Car Fair Purchase Price (retail value): The amount that a consumer reasonably expects to pay to buy this used car at a dealership.

Private Party Value: The amount you can expect to receive when selling your car to another consumer. This value number is typically higher than the trade-in value because dealerships have overhead costs to consider.

Certified Pre-Owned Price (CPO): Dealerships may offer a factory-backed certification process. The price is usually higher than a conventional used car, but many people like the perks of buying a certified car.

New Car Pricing:

New Car Fair Purchase Price: The amount that a consumer should expect to pay when buying a new car at a dealership.

These values are displayed both on Autotrader and KBB.com and dealer websites nationwide. Just look for the Kelley Blue Book® Price Advisor. It has recognizable white, green, and red zones. The Green Zone price on the Price Advisor lets you know that it is a fair price for both buyers and sellers.

In addition to vehicles of all types, Kelley Blue Book also reports values for motorcycles.

Kelley Blue Book Quick Facts

Kelley Blue Book is a part of Cox Automotive, which owns Autotrader and 25 other auto brands, so they have access to a substantial amount of auto-related data and resources.

The company has been providing car value pricing information for almost a century; Les Kelley started the company in 1926.

KBB.com provides numerous products and services that help car buyers, car sellers, and car owners.

FAQ’s

Which is more accurate, Blue Book or Cars.com?

Kelley Blue Book and Black Book don’t use the same exact same data to calculate car values and pricing. Cars.com uses Black Book, which focuses heavily on auction data. KBB looks at many other factors.

Kelley Blue Book Car Data

KBB.com uses the following to create car values:

  • Predictive analytics.
  • Industry and field analysis trends.
  • 250+ data sources with 3 trillion data points
  • Regionalized values and pricing.
  • Economic and auto market conditions.
  • Car details: Trim, car age, car features, car condition, and mileage.
    Seasonal trends.

Black Book Car Data

  • Black Book uses the following to calculate car value.
  • Pricing data from both wholesale auctions and actual vehicle transactions.
  • Market insights.
  • A vehicle’s equipment, age, mileage, and condition.
  • Market fluctuations, seasonal adjustments, and regional factors.

Is Cars.com a public company?

Yes. You can find “CARS” on the New York Stock Exchange.

Where is Cars.com located?

Their corporate headquarters is located at 300 S. Riverside, Suite 1000, Chicago, IL 60606.

Are Autotrader and Kelley Blue Book the same company?

No. Autotrader and Kelley Blue Book are two separate companies, but they are both owned by Cox Automotive.