Denver government hoping for sweet deal when it auctions Toyota Priuses
The time is right, says the City of Denver, to dispose of 24 hybrid Toyota Priuses in its fleet. So, come Jan. 23 and Feb. 6, Denver will auction off the vehicles—all of them 2001 or 2002 models—in two lots.
The cars still are under an eight-year-warranty. One vehicle has just 14,407 miles on it, and the car with the highest mileage has 46,159 ticks on the odometer.
“This is the optimum time for us to surplus these vehicles,” City Fleet Manager Ernie Ivey told GovPro.com. “We optimize our money if we sell them now before their warranties expire.”
According to Ivey, the City bought the Priuses six years ago for about $20,500 and benefited from a $3,900 rebate from the State of Colorado. Their residual (sale) value is around $11,000, Ivey said.
“If we wait another two years before disposing of them, the hybrid warranty goes off and the residual price will drop,” Ivey told GovPro.com.
Should be plenty of interest
City Surplus Administrator Kris Deutmeyer estimated that the used hybrids could fetch at least $8,000 to $9,000 each at auction.
“Motorists are interested in them because they get almost 50 miles to the gallon,” Deutmeyer told GovPro.com. “They are dependable vehicles, and they still have a lot of life on their warranties.”
Deutmeyer predicted that the hybrid sell-off will attract twice as many bidders as the City’s usual auctions of abandoned and confiscated vehicles.
“I’ve had a lot of individuals call about the used hybrids, and all the Denver taxi companies and dealers have expressed interested in buying them,” Deutmeyer said.
Ivey, a 36-year veteran in public fleet management, asserted that local government officials need to keep their fingers on the pulse of the market to determine when the time is right to move surplus vehicles.
“I think you have to do an analysis,” Ivey said. “Obviously I’m always doing calculations like this one. We forecast their life cycles, and sell them to maximize our money.”
For information on the Denver hybrid auction, click here.