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Discussion Starter #1
Possibly needing to ship a car from CA to AL.

Anyone have any suggestions? Good or bad experiences?

Thanks!
 

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Relapsing Honda fan
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Whatever you do, don't ask for an online quote. I literally got 20 calls a day and just as many emails for two whole weeks. Everyone's price was within $100 so I'd just use whatever company someone here has already happily worked with. Just my $.02.
 

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I made the mistake of asking for an online quote and got flooded with phone calls and emails. Must have been at least 15-20 messages/day on my phone and about 30 total emails. Don't do any online quotes. Keep in mind they are just the brokers you see online and many of them are just putting the car up for quotes on the dispatch bid board for any driver.

Luckily, I had a friend that owns a used car dealership and he had access to the central dispatch and acted as my broker and screened the quotes. Saved me a few hundred dollars and more importantly, everything was on time (delivered to within 15 minutes of the estimate given 3 days earlier).

The important thing was to read the reviews of the shippers and pick one that has good ratings (note, they accept sponsored reviews). If the car you are buying is extra special, consider enclosed shipping but that costs a lot more. I did not do it with my 2005. As stated by my friend - if you had driven it across the country, you would have gotten the same road dirt and the cost of a professional detailing when it arrives is a hellavalot less than then cost of an enclosed carrier.

Reviews below:
Transport Reviews.com - Ratings and Reviews of Auto Transport Companies - Your Source For Finding a Quality Auto Transporter!

With my friends help, I ended up with NPS Auto Transport out of Upland, California. Total cost (had to be paid in CASH to driver) was $650 from Tuscon, Arizona to my local WalMart (truck would not fit in subdivision) in Stone Mtn, Ga.

If that had not worked out, I was going to go with one of my 3 finalists (after screening the phone calls and emails):
Mercury Auto Transport
South Beach Transport
Parker Trucking

Keep in mind, many of these guys are just using the same trucking companies and they are just brokers so you may not see much difference. It comes down to payment terms, timing, and trust.
 

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Possibly needing to ship a car from CA to AL.

Anyone have any suggestions? Good or bad experiences?

Thanks!
I live in Enterprise too :cool:


Use a weekend to drive it back!


Let me know if you get a Lotus... we'll have to meet up. Then you can teach me about the AH-64D, sir.
 

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Passport. Never a problem.

Whatever you decide: NEVER use a broker. You can wind up with Bubba and his girlfriend Darlene with a broken-down open truck using dodgy loading methods. Unless the car is bound for a scrapyard, use a reliable enclosed outfit that does the whole job from answering the phone to all the physical work.
 

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My car was picked up today in NH and is on the way to me :)

When deciding on open or enclosed think about if the driver will be stopping to sleep. When the truck is staying somewhere overnight a lotus may draw unwanted attention. Also a delivery driver where I work told me about when he was a kid he and his friends would throw rocks at the transport trucks. Stupid kids lol

It's more expensive but for a lotus I wouldn't ship open
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Went with Mercury. Broker was great to deal with. At first it was going to be $1800 then somebody bid $1200. Seems cheap for covered transport. I'll let everyone know what kind of shape my Exige shows up in.
 

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I shipped my 05 Elise 3300 miles to me last year. Enclosed, tied down, car cover on and first on the trailer. Make sure you specify that the car does not move until it gets unloaded at destination. All will go well. They even took pics of the car secured on the trailer at shipping location. Just ask all the questions.
 

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Gamera The Atomic Turtle
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My car was picked up today in NH and is on the way to me :)

When deciding on open or enclosed think about if the driver will be stopping to sleep. When the truck is staying somewhere overnight a lotus may draw unwanted attention. Also a delivery driver where I work told me about when he was a kid he and his friends would throw rocks at the transport trucks. Stupid kids lol

It's more expensive but for a lotus I wouldn't ship open
An elise shipping from NH? Where from, what did you buy?
 

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I used DAS to ship my Esprit from Texarkana to Tampa. Most definitely pay for the enclosed transport. As stated above, it's worth every penny for a number of reasons.

I checked the tracking of my car every day and when it was picked up it sat in the tow company's lot in Shreveport for 7 days until it started it's 3 day journey to me. This was my first experience with auto shippers- is this normal?
 

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Here's one to consider: Stewart Transport. They handle a majority of Factory Five Cobra kits going out to customers in an enclosed trailer. As such, returns from west to east can end up empty. They are an owner, not a broker. The best rule I've heard is that you want to deal with someone who owns a truck.....not a broker. The problem with going with a broker is that you can have your deal all set and be standing in your driveway expecting a truck any minute and the actual truck owner found another haul worth $20 more and is taking that one instead, leaving you standing there. They've simply bid with the broker, so don't care. They have no real vested interest with you and a one time haul.
 

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I used DAS to ship my Esprit from Texarkana to Tampa. Most definitely pay for the enclosed transport. As stated above, it's worth every penny for a number of reasons.

I checked the tracking of my car every day and when it was picked up it sat in the tow company's lot in Shreveport for 7 days until it started it's 3 day journey to me. This was my first experience with auto shippers- is this normal?
I sold a Forester through ebay some years ago, and the buyer used DAS (aka Dependable Auto Shippers). They are a big outfit, and recommended by ebay as a default. Huge pain in the butt for both parties. Multiple missed deadlines. The car has a long narrow storage compartment that I planted a cheap umbrella in as an integrity check. They failed. The umbrella didn't make it and the buyer said the car had clearly been rifled through. There were a few odds and ends I had overlooked when I emptied the car, and they were rolling around loose in the footwells - they didn't even try to hide the behavior. The agent on my end canceled the original drop off date, and dragged their feet when we did drop it off. After numerous further delays, the delivery was over two weeks late.
 

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Went with Mercury. Broker was great to deal with. At first it was going to be $1800 then somebody bid $1200. Seems cheap for covered transport. I'll let everyone know what kind of shape my Exige shows up in.
My dad, my friend, and I all went through Mercury for our cars. We all had a good experience shipping them from California to Wisconsin.
 

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I used a company called Exotic Car Transport out of FL. They were great. My car was last so it was first on the truck. No shuffling. they dropped off a Veyron and an Enzo before mine. The driver even called me to let me know his location as he was getting closer and provided a estimated date of arrival. Cost was 1500 FL to CT. Here is a video and pictures of my delivery if your interested in seeing how they handle and deliver the car. Lotus Delivery
 

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I got my subaru shipped by Pilot transport... not sure how much it cost (I didn't pay it... the shop did), but they communicated very well and went from AL to MI.
 

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i used direct express auto transport

great pricing, solid turnaround (took about a week from MO to WI, but would have been quicker if the car was coming out of a bigger city)

the truck driver was a nice guy too... made me feel way better about how the car was handled after the fact (i was pretty nervous up until then)
 

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