As the Salisbury Journal's Motoring Blogger, I'm often (okay twice) asked how much a specific vehicle is worth. This may sound like a simple question, but valuations are not as straightforward as some motorists assume.

Let's consider an example. The current value of a 2008 Jaguar XJ8 4.2 V8 Sovereign ranges from £24,000 to £28,000. This is because vehicles actually have four distinct values. These are:

1. franchised dealer, i.e. sale price at manufacturer branded garages,

2. independent dealer, i.e. sale price at non-manufacture branded garages,

3. private sale, i.e. sale price between members of the public,

4. trade, i.e. the price dealers pay for stock.

The highest valuation is franchised dealer. This is due to the perceived quality of vehicles, model specific knowledge, glamorous premises, and warranties. Independent dealer prices are therefore lower, as buyers lose some of these perks (in theory).

Private sale values are lower than both franchised and independent dealers. This is because private buyers receive no after sales service and very little legal protection. Finally, the lowest valuation is trade. This rock bottom figure allows dealers to buy vehicles cheap enough to sell them for a profit. This is the price you will be offered for a trade-in.

Please also consider the significant but little known 'Stephen valuation'. So, please let me know if you have a new Jaguar to sell – I value it at £50.

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