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How to Sell?

Cargurus vs. Truecar Offer in 2024

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Written by: Michael Becker
Last Updated:

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Which is Better for Selling the Car?

Between CarGurus and TrueCar, CarGurus is the better choice for selling your car. The company offers you two options: by claiming their instant offer or listing your vehicle on their platform. This allows you to choose how to get more cash for your car.

Suppose you go CarGurus instant cash route. Their offer is valid for 7 days or 250 additional miles, which is better than TrueCar’s 3-day validity. Once you accept their offer, you don’t need to bring your car anywhere since they provide free pick-up service. 

As for receiving payments, TrueCar only pays in check, whereas CarGurus has two payment methods: check and bank transfer. Even if Cargurus’ payment processing can take up to 3 business days, the overall turnaround time is still the same as TrueCar. 

CarGurus Summary

  • Receive payment within 3 working days
  • Find out the market value of your car
  • List your car for sale in under 5 minutes
  • Up to $75,000 in protection for your sale

TrueCar Summary

  • Enter VIN to instantly get a car estimate
  • Offer is good for three days
  • TrueCar pays through check
  • Offer comes from one of Certified Dealers

CarGurus vs. TrueCar Comparison

Logo cargurus logo truecar logo
Cars acceptedAny cars, subject to restrictionCars in most types of conditions
Fees$0 for instant offers, $4.95 listing fees$0
Requesting quotesOnline applicationOnline application
Offer validity7 days or an additional 250 miles3 days
Payments offeredCash via bank transfer or checkCash or trade-in value
PayoutWithin 2 business daysSame day
Car pick-upFree pickupDrop off
Physical locationsNoneOver 10,000 certified dealers
Turnaround timeUp to 3 business days48 to 72 hours
Customer serviceChat, phone, and social mediaPhone, email, and social media channels

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Cars Accepted

CarGurus accepts vehicles in most conditions, but with consideration to their age and aftermarket customizations. To confirm whether the company can purchase your vehicle, you’ll need a valid Vehicle Identification Number or a license plate number. 

Suppose your car is ineligible for their instant offers. You can still sell it on CarGurus by listing it on their website. Or, you can sell it to TrueCar as it buys vehicles in most conditions, including wrecked, damaged, or junk cars


CarGurus doesn’t charge any fees when you use its website to get an instant offer for your car. If you claim the offer and have it picked up by their representative, you won’t have to pay anything, either. 

But if you’re using its website to sell your car to private buyers, CarGurus will charge you a $4.95 listing fee. Your listing will be active on the website for 30 days. 

Like CarGurus, you can use TrueCar’s website to get an instant offer for free. Their certified dealerships won’t charge if you bring your vehicle in for inspection and claim their instant offer. 

Requesting Quotes

With CarGurus, you can request a quote by going to their website and finding the option to sell your car. Once there, you’ll see the section where you can enter the VIN or the license plate number and state registration. 

Either way, the website will take you to another page where you can describe your vehicle in terms of its mileage, trim, transmission, condition, and history. Finally, you will need to provide an active email so CarGurus can contact you with an instant offer. 

Requesting a quote with TrueCar is quite similar to CarGurus’ quick and easy process. On their Sell Your Car webpage, enter your car’s VIN or license plate number and state of registration. If you don’t have any of these, you can enter the following instead:

  • Make, model and year
  • Trim
  • Style

From there, you’ll need to provide additional information in the succeeding pages to help TrueCar calculate the best offer for your car. Some of the details that can affect the pricing are mileage, zip code, optional features, and conditions. 

Once the website generates an offer, you can claim it at their certified dealers. Note that the offer might change after the certified dealer inspects your vehicle. 

Offer Validity

CarGurus offers are valid for 7 days or additional 250 miles, whichever comes first. Meanwhile, TrueCar offers are valid for 3 days only. 

Payments Offered

After accepting their offer, CarGurus will pay you cash through a check or bank transfer. TrueCar offers payments through checks, but you can also use your car’s trade-in value to purchase a new vehicle at the certified dealership.


CarGurus normally takes 2 to 3 business days to process payments once you accept their offer and finalize the sale. TrueCar, on the other hand, will hand your check payment the same day you accept the offer. 

Car Pick-up

CarGurus advertises allowing car sellers to do everything online, thus offering free pick-up service. With this, you won’t have to drive your car anywhere and just schedule for their representative to pick it up. 

Physical Locations

To claim a TrueCar offer, you’ll need to bring your vehicle to their certified dealer and have it inspected for the final price. Currently, the company works with over 10,000 certified dealers across the country. 

Turnaround Time

Selling your vehicle to CarGurus or TrueCar can take up to 3 days or 72 hours. The entire process already includes getting an instant offer through their online application, having your car picked up, or with TrueCar, bringing it to a certified dealership. 

Once their representatives inspect your car, the rest of the transaction can take up to an hour, assuming you have all the necessary paperwork ready. These include the vehicle registration, title, and your driver’s license or ID.   

Customer Service

CarGurus has a chat option on their website that you can use to contact their customer service team. Just click on the blue chat bubble at the bottom right of the window. 

Besides that, the company hotline 877-492-4737 accepts queries from potential customers. If you’re on Twitter or Facebook, you can also send them a message there. 

TrueCar also offers customer support through:

  • Phone: 1-888-878-3227 
  • Email:

You can also connect with them on social media through their Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter accounts.


Logo cargurus logo truecar logo
Better Business Bureau1.462.89
Consumer Affairs3.74.1

Looking over review sites like Trustpilot, BBB, and Consumer Affairs, customers liked that CarGurus 

  • Provides a convenient option to sell their vehicles 
  • Has a straightforward and hassle-free online process
  • Has no charges when claiming instant offers

However, others didn’t like that the company charged $4.95 in listing fees, and some claimed they couldn’t sell their cars at all despite paying for this.

TrueCar, on the other hand, received impressive ratings at these legit review sites. Customers liked their optimized car-selling process and that their website was easy to use. 

Some customers, however, disliked that car dealerships started contacting them after applying for TrueCar’s instant cash offer.

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Michael Becker


About the author:

Michael Becker is a car enthusiast and expert who has been working in the automotive industry for over 15 years. He started his career as a salesperson at a local dealership, where he learned the ins and outs of the car market. Then he moved on to flipping cars for a profit.

Michael has also helped many of his relatives and friends to sell their cars, using his knowledge and skills to get them the best deals. He will guide you through the process and help you avoid the common pitfalls.

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