Most auctions (and some stock dealers) have a grading system which uses numbers and letters to tell the buyer what condition the vehicle is in. Often on inspection sheets, this includes an overall, interior, and sometimes, exterior ratings. This system is a useful way to categorize in general the quality of the vehicle while quickly searching car listings.
In most cases, you will see either numbers or a letter or two:
- 6 or above – New and never been driven.
- 5 – Near new. Everything is in top condition.
- 4.5 – Excellent condition. May have some minor issues (small scratches/dents).
- 4 – Good condition. Normal wear and tear at max.
- 3.5 – Average condition. All areas are at an acceptable standard.
- 3 – Various scratches or dents. Some paint missing.
- 2 – In bad condition
- 1 – Very bad condition OR has been modified and in good condition.
- 0, A, A1-A5 – Involved in Accident. If there is a number, higher is worse.
- RA or R – Had accident and repaired.
- R1 – Repaired modified car. For example, adding after-market parts for performance or appeal.
- B or C – Had large accident and repaired.
- *** – Good for parts only.
Other Special Overall Grades:
- S – Perfectly new.
- T – Special Purpose vehicle.
Most auctions will also provide you will a grading of the interior’s condition.
- A – Good condition
- B – Normal wear condition
- C – Needs cleaning/repair
- D – Needs much cleaning/repair
The Car Diagram:
All inspection sheets have a diagram of the car’s body. There will be a lot of different marks inspectors will place over this diagram to describe what they see. The following is the most common marking scheme:
- A – Scratch mark
- A1 – About a thumb’s width
- A2 – About a palm’s width
- A3 – Larger than A2
- B – Section that needs repair work
- C – Corrosion exists
- M – Repaired mark
- W – Repaired wave. Very common to see 1-2 on older cars.
- R – Rust exists
- P – Repainting needed
- X – Body panel needs replacing
- XX or XXX – Panel is replaced
- – A line is generally to show where a scratch is.
- U – Dent
- U1 – Thumb’s width
- U2 – Palm’s width
- U3 – Larger than U2
Japan has one of the most developed USED CAR AUCTION system in the world. There are literally 100+ auto auctions in Japan. Auctions are used as a major source to find cars to export; by the exporters.
Following are major Auto Auctions in Japan.
AAA (Asnet Auto Auctions)
Description: Same as ARAI.
Locations: Bayside, Fukuoka, Oyama, Sendai
Note: There are 2 auctions in Oyama: one for cars on Thursday and one for vans/trucks on Saturday.
Other: AAAi Inspection Sheet
Description: “Leading On-Line Construction Equipment Exchange”.
Description: Auctions about 3,000 vehicles a week. Also has many network locations with +10,000 vehicles in stock.
Locations: Saitama (Fukaya) – auction site
Link: www.bcnaa.jp (auction); www.bcn-chubu.jp (network of other services)
Other: BCN Inspection Sheet
Description: Owned by Gulliver Inc. Each week there are about 6,000 vehicles auctioned a week. Also sells fixed-price.
Auction time: Mondays: 10am to 7pm
Locations: Nagoya, Tokyo, internet
Other: GAO! Inspection Sheet
Locations: Fukuoka, Hokkaido, Kansai, Nagoya, Sendai, Tokyo
Description: Every Saturday
Location: Kobe, Kyushu, Makuhari
Description: Online auction search system connecting multiple auction sites for used heavy-equipment (construction and industrial). Auctions 24/7 every day.
Notes: JU auctions have higher resolution level images at 640*480 compared to the 300*225 average.
Locations: Aichi, Akita, Aomori, Asahikawa, Chiba, Ehime, Fukui, Fukuoka, Fukushima , Gifu, Gunma, Hakodate, Hiroshima, Hyogo, Ibaraki, Ishikawa, Iwate, Kagawa, Kagoshima, Kanagawa, Kitami, Kochi, Kumamoto, Kushiro, Kyoto, Mie, Miyagi, Miyazaki, Muroran, Nagano, Nagasaki, Nara, Niigata, Obihiro, Oit, Okayama, Okinawa, Osaka, Saga, Saitama, Sapporo, Shiga, Shimane, Shizuoka, Tochigi, Tokushima, Tokyo, Tottori, Toyama, Wakayama, Yamagata, Yamaguchi, Yamanashi.
For more info: visit HERE which has map on the bottom.
Link: www.juaanet.jp ; Useful link: Translated JU Group Link Page
Other: JU Tokyo Inspection Sheet
Auction Days: Wednesday (Ebino), Thursday (Fukuoka), Friday (Yamaguchi)
Locations: Ebino, Fukuoka, Yamaguchi
Locations: Kansai, Okayama, Shikoku
Location: Nagoya, Osaka (Takatsuki, Tokyo (Kawasaki)
Description: Open Saturdays and Thursdays.
Locations: Nagoya, Osaka, Tokyo
Description: Auction for local dealers. Once a month on Fridays
Locations: Nagano, Shiojiri
Description: Specializes in Heavy Equipment.
Description: Every Monday.
Description: Tuesday: Kobe, Wednesday: Atsugi, Thursday: Nagoya
Locations: Kobe, Atsugi, Nagoya, Fukuoka
Description: In 2005, USS acquired RAA and renamed USS Ryutsu Auto Auction.
Locations: Hamamatsu, Kanto
Locations: Fujisawa, Fukuoka, Kobe, Nagoya
Description: Held on Saturdays
Locations: Kanagawa (The meeting place is Tokyo meeting place of NAA)
Description: Auctions for Toyota dealers to sell off trade-in cars they receive.
Notes: TAA has higher quality images than the average: 640*480 compared to 300*225.
Locations: Chubu, Fukushima, Hiroshima, Kanto, Kinki, Kyushyu, Kyushyu South (Kagoshima), Okinawa, Yokohama
Link: taaweb.jp, TAA Web (Japanese)
Description: Specializes in Construction Equipment.
Description: Auction motorcycles and vehicles. Tuesdays
Description: Largest used-car auctioneer with over 30% market share. Through its ‘USS Globe Network’, all 19 auction sites (including 2 USS-R sites) and an additional 14 affiliate auction sites are connected through satellite.
Locations: Fujioka, Fukkuoka, Gunma, Hokuriku, Kobe, Kyushu, Nagoya, Niigata, Okayama, Osaka, Ryustsu, Sapporo, Shizuoka, Tohoku, Tokyo, West Tokyo, Yokohama.
Description: Auction dedicated to reusable (older-model, high-mileage) cars.
Locations: USS-R Tokyo, USS-R Nagoya
Description: Every Friday
Description: Tuesdays for Tokyo, Thursdays for Osaka
Locations: Osaka, Tokyo
How to understand Japanese user car AA Sheet
Auction inspection sheets are the primary way to provide prospect buyers an idea of the car’s condition. Without them, you would have a hard time knowing any vehicle’s condition until you have your bidding agent inspect it on the morning of the auction. While inspections sheets are not always accurate, they help ease the searching process.
These inspection sheets have “Inspector’s Notes” which are written in Japanese that can provide you a wealth of knowledge of the condition of the car. Try to have such notes, and possibly all information, translated.
Each auction house can have a different inspection sheet form. Differences are usually in the variations of formating and symbol usage, but there is also sometimes variation of what information is available.
Additionally, some auto auctions do not use inspection sheets – e.g. NAA (Nyussatus Auto Auction). You will find that an agent with good experience at inspecting vehicles is a must when using this kind of auto auction. This is often the case when cars are sold as-is.
|Year of Manufacture:||Japanese use the Western Calendar (WC).|
Conversion to the International Calendar (IC) is as follows: WC – 12 + 2000 = IC. Therefore, Western Calendar Year 18 means International Calendar 2006.
|Odometer Reading:||Odometer reading is 99% genuine. When the auction inspectors suspect that the odometer has been modified, they mark with an ” * “on the auction sheet.|
We can also provide odometer inspections by private companies such as Jevic (www.jevic.co.jp) at the buyer’s expense.
|Exterior Grade:||Grade S||New car but registered|
|Grade 5+||Like new condition|
|Grade 4.5||Immaculate condition|
|Grade 4||Very good condition – minor dents or scratches|
|Grade 3.5||Good condition with noticeable dents or scratches|
|Grade 3||Fair condition – repair needed|
|R / A / 0 / RA||Accident-ed & Repaired|
|The most acceptable grades by most importers are Grade 3.5, 4 & 4.5. Body damages can be fixed either by us (at an additional cost) or by the importer.|
|B||Dent with other defects,deep scratch|
|G||Window screen Stone chip and /or scratch|
|1 – 4||E.g. U1 – This is a small dent (barely visible)|
E.g. U4 – Very big dent – needs repair