Volkswagen Financial Services and Daimler Mobility have expanded online used-car marketplace Heycar into the U.K., bringing an inventory of more than 100,000 vehicles across 1,400 dealerships. The U.K. used-car market is valued at $60 billion, and financing is valued at $21.2 billion, according to Heycar.
Heycar’s platform, which launched nearly two years ago in Berlin, partners with select dealers — listing vehicles, with warranties, that are less than 8 years old with fewer than 100,000 miles. In Berlin, the company has an inventory of 400,000 used cars from more than 4,000 dealerships.
“The U.K. used car industry works inefficiently for consumers and dealers,” Heycar Chief Executive Mat Moakes said. “Buying a used car can be like a lottery — you don’t know what you’ll get.”
Plus, European dealers are typically “burdened with rising fees for listing used cars online, squeezing their margins without a guarantee of leads or sales,” Moakes added. To that end, the Heycar online platform is ad-free and doesn’t charge dealers a listing fee. However, after the “launch phase,” the company will charge on a lead-generation basis, the company noted without providing a timeline for the launch phase.
Volkswagen Financial Services secured Daimler Mobility as a partner and investor for its used-car platform late last year. Daimler Mobility holds a 20% stake in Mobility Trader Holding GmbH, which operates the Heycar platform in Germany via subsidiary Mobility Trader GmbH.
Daimler Mobility also holds a seat on the advisory board of Mobility Trader GmbH and as Heycar expands beyond Germany – the captive will hold one seat on the advisory board of each additional international subsidiary, according to VWFS. Both companies have agreed not to disclose the purchase price.