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What is Auction

The Japanese used car auctions are a place where dealers, not the public, sell used and new vehicles (though technically these are “used cars”) to each other.  Many exporters have done the 2 step process to become members of these auctions.  First, they became used car dealers and acquired a second-hand dealer license.  Next they have built up memberships in each of the auctions.  That process in itself is lengthy and often involves guarantors, an antiquated system that still remains in Japan. Only then do they attain bidding rights to purchase from the auctions.


Are they a place where anyone can go and buy a car?

Only registered licensed dealers in Japan have the rights to attend and bid on vehicles. Often you will be required to wear an ID identifying you as one of the “employees” of the dealers’ company.  The auctions know foreign buyers are a major (30 to 40% of sales) influence to the selling price of vehicles in the auctions.

What are the main auction groups?

The larger auction groups in Japan are as follows:

The USS auction group
The JU auction group
The JAA auction group
The HAA auction group
The maker or x-rental tender auctions
The TAA auction group (Toyota Auto Auction)
The Honda auction group
The CAA auction group
The MIRIVE auction group

These are not the only auctions in Japan but rather the major groups.

The auctions are situated all over Japan from the top island of Hokkaido in the North to the small islands of Okinawa in the South.

NEXCO JAPAN is the registered member and regular buyer from all these auction houses.

We offer dealers and individuals overseas the opportunity to buy from tens of thousands of vehicles auctioned daily in Japan. We help them overcome the language barrier and smooth the export process, taking the stress out of buying from Japan.

As a customer of NEXCO JAPAN, you can see the cars, trucks and buses that are coming up for auction in real time on your screen. We provide you with translations of the auction inspectors’ comments so you have a good overall understanding of the condition of the vehicle, and our experienced and helpful staff will also assist you with advice.

How many vehicles go through the auctions & who supplies to them?

During peak months (March and April) there may be up to 150,000 cars and trucks per week going through these auctions.  During the quieter periods (January, August and December) the number would be about two thirds of this.

Supply of vehicles to the Japanese car auctions comes from various sources. The main source for the “Maker” auctions such as Toyota, Honda and Nissan are traded-in vehicles.  When a customer purchases a new vehicle the “Maker” usually gives the customer what looks like a good bargain for his used vehicle (when actual fact this cost is already built into the price of the new vehicle).   The Maker dealers are not restricted to their own auctions and regularly sell their cars into the mainstream auctions as well.

The second supply of vehicles comes from the normal used car dealer network.  The largest of these being companies like “Gulliver” etc. who sell their trade ins through the auctions.

How is bidding performed?

The most common style of bidding is done live electronically by clicking a button, though the process is a lot more complicated than it seems.  This form of bidding is similar to a “war of attrition”, you keep on clicking on the button until the other party cannot afford another cent (yen), and the car is bought at the top price to the seller.

The largest of these is the USS Tokyo auction, where 8 lanes of cars are sold at the same time non-stop until the auction finishes.  No brakes for lunch.

Other means of bidding occur in the “Nyusatsu Auctions“.  This is a tender type of bidding.  A registered bid is secretly placed with the auction.  At a set time the auction declares the winner.  Bargains are often made in the “Nyusatsu” auctions though cars can be lost to another party by just a few yen.

The “oral” auction system led by an auctioneer at the front no longer exists since decades. There is no way to get the volume of vehicles on sale through the auction in one day in this sales method.

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View what is available
You will see cars and trucks from new to very old ones as well as various models and colors.
Foreign cars, JDM vehicles, Japanese cars, left hand drive imports, right hand drive cars and trucks sold locally in Japan.
This is where Japanese used car dealers sell their stock.
This is where the exporters buy their stock from for export.
This is the raw wholesale car auctions.

Receive a free “auction sheet” even though you cannot read Japanese Our expert auto sourcing specialists will guide you through it.

Get access to videos on how to search for a vehicle, how to find its market price.

How to buy car from Japanese Auto Auctions. you can take a view on our VIDEO GUIDANCE in 3 parts.

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