There are a lot of scams played on car dealers by those who falsify employment records, residencies and even the mileage of used vehicles. There’s one point that’s almost impossible to forge, though – Vehicle Identification Numbers (VINs).
Each car has a unique VIN that manufacturers stamp in various locales inside a vehicle. They are often found in multiple places, including on the driver’s side of the dashboard, on a plate near the driver’s-side door jamb and on the engine.
Dealers and other buyers of used cars use the VIN to unlock a treasure trove of information, including recalls, registration, thefts and more.
Carfax, Bumper, AutoCheck and other vendors provide vehicle background history when VINs are supplied.
With shortages of new-vehicle inventories dragging on and used-car prices soaring, dealers are under more pressure than ever to choose the most valuable vehicles for their lots.
Now there’s a new VIN history player in town. EpicVIN is available to anyone but has features designed just for dealers.
“When we say we are a solution for dealers, the report is just part of the solution,” says Vasili Malei, EpicVIN’s head of business development. “We’re not saying we are better than Carfax. They have millions, they have budgets, they can buy all sources of information. But we try to make (EpicVIN) very friendly for dealers, money- and technology-wise.”
Malei says EpicVIN is the first vehicle-history report provider to gather information based on blockchain technology – basically a shared digital ledger with data compiled from various public sources. The information is trustworthy because data in the ledger is not easily altered. Vehicle-report data from other sources generally is culled from maintenance and repair records.
“Plus, we add some data elements Carfax does not enjoy, like sales history and photos of vehicles for sale,” says Malei. “So if you buy a vehicle, you see the whole visualized history of that vehicle. Carfax does not offer that. They probably don’t need it, but there is a demand in our niche.”
Single reports by EpicVIN cost $14.99 compared with the $30 average price of vehicle histories sold by other providers.