Car Soup.com went live for the first time in December 1997. For the past decade and a half, the company owners have put their years of automotive marketing experience to work on their website with the mission of serving one market, one dealership, one car at a time. Offering shopping lists of more than 100,000 new cars and over 60,000 used cars nationwide. CarSoup serves local buyers and sellers of various vehicle genres across the United States.

 

Rank Chart
Cars Listed
Car Loan Service
Our Score
#1
3+ million
Yes
7.6
#2
3+ million
Yes
7.4
#3
2.5 million+
Yes
6.7
#7
thumbnail-4
109,000+
Yes
5.7

The Good

At CarSoup.com, they have many services with one goal: to connect buyers and sellers. CarSoup dealers dramatically lower their cost of acquisition for each car buyer and the website’s private party listings remain one of the best values online. CarSoup.com has a local focus through local broadcast media partnerships that give the website a more results-oriented approach.

Unlike popular car finder websites like Edmunds and Kelley blue book, Car Soup offers a broader spectrum of vehicle pricing research options. For instance, Kelley blue book specializes mostly in car prices, but Car Soup reviews cars plus trucks, motorcycles, ATVs, personal watercrafts, boats, snowmobiles, RVS and campers and classic vehicles.

CarSoup’s relationships with local dealers is a bonus for car sellers, since Carsoup can connect them directly with local dealers in their area who can appraise their vehicle and make an offer. This is great for people looking to cash in fast on their vehicle. It is a bit more reassuring to be connected with a dealer through a Carsoup referral than to simply search for one independently with no recommendations. This also comes in handy with car repairs and maintenance, as CarSoup is able to connect customers with recommended local dealerships with auto repair facilities. Customers can sign up to receive the latest deals and coupons for car accessories like tires by providing their email address on the site page.

A useful feature for car sellers is CarSoup’s Price Your Car Calculator. By plugging in the car’s make, model, year and zip code that the car will be sold in, Sellers get a baseline estimate or general market value of their car. They can then determine whether to sell it for more or less, depending on improvements, dings, dents or rust.

A unique feature is the Free New Vehicle Express Quote. By plugging in the car’s make, model and year, shoppers can get fast, free price quotes from dealers of their choice with no obligation.

The website uses cookies to determine your location, providing specific deals, car listings, and offers based on your local area. CarSoup’s recommendation tool comes in the form of their Top Ten Lists found in their site’s Buyer’s Guide. Some of their recent Top Ten Recommendation Lists include:

  • 7 Affordable Convertibles For a Little Summertime Fun
  • 10 of the Best Auto Buys With Third-Row Seating
  • 10 Cars With Small Exteriors Yet Surprisingly Large Interiors
  • 10 Cheapest New Cars With V-8 Engine

One last honorable mention falls under the umbrella of CarSoup’s relationships with local dealers. If someone is looking to sell their vehicle for cash, CarSoup’s free tool allows them to skip cold calling to find a local dealer to sell their car to directly. This referral tool just requires the car make, model and year and once clicking the NEXT button, customers can select a local dealer they want to possibly sell the car to. All that is expected is to mention to the dealer that CarSoup was the one who sent them.

The Bad

CarSoup does a good job with features to help individuals looking to sell their vehicle but lacks the full toolbox to help buyers. For example, the website does not offer a payment calculator to help buyers assess the true cost of the car. This feature is offered by other websites in the car finder niche, which puts CarSoup at a disadvantage. CarSoup also does not offer a comparison tool to compare the cars side by side.

The potential down-side to the free dealer quote is that customers have to submit an email with their first and last name, email, phone and zip code. Oftentimes people shopping online for car deals want to remain anonymous. They also want to take the time to get prepared before communicating with a dealer. This is where tools like the Compare tool, True Cost to Own and Payment Calculator would come in handy.

Additionally, the site “outsources” its vehicle history tool to CarFax.com by having a live link to the site under the phrase “Get Your Vehicle History Report”. Perhaps they should have a competitive vehicle history tool of their own, since CARFAX, although a popular and trusted brand, their Vehicle History Reports are based on information supplied to CARFAX. CARFAX does not have the complete history of every vehicle, a hole that CarSoup could possibly fill for its customers.

When it comes to car loans, the good news is that Carsoup offers them. The “bad” news is that they advertise it as “Bad Credit? No credit? NO WORRIES!” Regardless of the problem, be it Bankruptcy, Bad Credit, Divorce, First Time Buyer, Job Loss, No Credit History, Medical Issues, Repo, or other credit challenges, Carsoup promises that its dealers will assist customers seeking loans. Superfluous at best, too good to be true at worst.

The Bottom Line

Overall, CarSoup.com gears most of its useful tools and services towards car sellers. If buyers are seeking to find a referral to a dealership in their area, this is a good site to try. It could use a few more tools such as a comparison tool and a payment calculator. That being said, buyers looking to connect directly with local dealers and car repair and maintenance hubs would greatly benefit from what CarSoup.com has to offer. For buyers, CarSoup does have a buyer’s guide with useful information, including tips and Top Ten recommendation lists. Most of all, Carsoup shines when it comes to searching for all vehicles, not just cars. Since CarSoup is one of the few “carfinder” sites that offer new and used listings and research tools for motorcycles, RVs, boats and snowmobiles, to name a few.

Are there any inaccuracies in this review? We take our accuracy very seriously and would love your feedback. Give feedback here.

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    10

    July 3rd, 2016 Pensacola, FL

    This website was by far the most help in my search for my new used Toyota Prius V.

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