7 Best Used Cars to Flip For Cash

Marc Skirvin
Marc Skirvin

Table of Contents

For those looking to make a quick dollar or start a legitimate business, flipping cars is a great way to earn money.

Maximize your earning potential by knowing the best cars to buy and sell for profit. 

Look around and see if you can buy these used cars to flip.

1. Japanese Cars

If you’re new to the flipping game, Japanese economy cars are a great place to start. There are tons of these cars on the market and they are relatively inexpensive.

Japanese economy cars don’t have a lot of the same maintenance issues as the American economy counterparts.

Check out these Japanese models:

  • Toyota Corolla – It is easy to maintain and has excellent fuel efficiency. The Corolla consistently receives four and five-star ratings from Kelley Blue Book.
  • Toyota Prius – The only reason someone would get rid of a Prius is that the hybrid battery is dead. Don’t worry – the battery can be replaced easily.
  • Honda Civic – Like the Corolla, it is one of the best-selling cars of all time and remains in demand.

Remember, if a car is being listed, then you’ll probably have to fix or replace something. Target the Japanese economy cars to gain high-yields on your return.

2. Classic Cars

Cars from the 1950s and 1960s are the reason so many people turn out for car shows. They look good and remind people of a by-gone era. 

You probably won’t find someone willing to sell a classic car in great condition for a discount price. Your best bet is to find someone who is trying to restore one as a passion project.

Look for these classic cars:

  • 1965 Ford Mustang – You won’t have a problem finding a buyer after you finish restoring it. The parts are relatively easy to find. 
  • 1969 Two-Door Chevy Nova – It’s another stylish but popular model. 
  • 1950’s Chevy Bel-Air – This car defined the 1950s so it shouldn’t be a problem finding a collector.

Be ready to pay a little extra and make a small investment to replace batteries or detail the car. 

3. Minivans

As long as people keep having children, there will be a demand for minivans. There are numerous types of minivans available so you’ll have to do your own research. Find out which minivans have mechanical issues.

A lot of the best makes and models are from the Japanese market. Check out these vehicles:

  • Honda Odyssey – They have been known to have transmission problems, but maintenance is inexpensive
  • Dodge Grand Caravan – The Caravan was designed for growing or large families. Smaller families might like the big storage room.

Most minivans on the market have high mileage and need parts. Cosmetic work might also be a small investment you need to make. 

If you’re a novice seller, starting with these can help you make a quick profit to move on to bigger prospects.

4. Pick-Up Trucks

Location is a big factor when trying to flip pick-up trucks. If you’re in New York City, Los Angeles, or another high-density population city, then a pick-up truck might not be a great sell.

Places with lots of home-improvement contractors, farms, or manufacturing plants have a demand for trucks.

These trucks are great buys:

  • Ford Super Duty F-250 – New or used, Super Duty trucks sell fast. They have large beds and a spacious cabin for versatile needs.
  • Honda Ridgeline – A light truck with excellent mileage.
  • Ford F-150 – One of the most popular selling trucks of all time. Parts and demand are not a problem.

Flipping a truck takes a certain audience, but you can be sure they’ll sell quickly. 

5. SUV

Sport utility vehicles (SUV) have increased in popularity over the last 30 years. Combining passenger abilities with off-road capabilities, the SUV has a wide appeal to families, students, and professionals alike. 

Look for these SUVs to make a profit:

  • GMC Yukon – It has a long history and well-known demand. Some owners have noted their repair costs rarely exceed $500.
  • Toyota RAV4 – This SUV can be a cash cow for you. The RAV4 is widely available and enjoys popularity. After repair costs, you should make money quickly.

There are other vehicles like the Chevy Traverse; however, the transmission is usually the first thing that needs replacing.

If you can get an SUV for an affordable price, then you shouldn’t have any obstacles flipping it.

6. Pre-War Cars

It’s rare to find a pre-war vehicle in working order. Sometimes you might only find the chassis or frame. Parts are also extremely expensive to repair pre-war cars. 

Generally, the parts don’t exist anymore or are not deemed safe. You may have to install modern parts or systems (like air conditioning). 

Any car from the 1940s or earlier is considered pre-war. You’ll need to invest a good amount of money to purchase and restore. The pay-off has huge upside potential.

Look for iconic manufacturers like Ford, Cadillac, Bentley, or Aston Martin. The pre-war frame alone can fetch a nice profit.

7. Sports Cars

Normally, you want to avoid sports cars when it comes to flipping. There are a few that hold their value, and you can still make some money if you buy for the right price.

Here is a list of some sports cars worth checking out:

  • Audi TTS – It has good horsepower with a sleek design. It might take you some time to find the right buyer but will still cover your time.
  • Chevy Camaro – Fewer cars are more iconic than the Camarao. 
  • Chevy Corvette – The Corvette is a mix of luxury and sportscar. It is one of the more affordable options used.
  • Porsche – Any model is going to attract offers. It might be harder to find and margins are smaller, but you will sell it.

Sports cars are a category new car flippers should steer clear of until they are more seasoned. 

Picking the Best Cars to Buy and Sell for Profit

Do some research on your local market. What are people buying? What are people selling? Find a category or niche that works for you.

The best cars to buy and sell for profit are going to differ from place to place. 

If you are going to start flipping, see how much we’ll pay to buy your car.

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About the Author


Marc is the Co-Founder of Cash Auto Salvage and Director of daily operations. He retired from a leading Internet Marketing company in 2013 and has been involved in the automotive industry ever since.

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