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Edmunds VS Kelley Blue Book – Which Provides The Most Accurate Car Values?

Edmunds VS Kelley Blue Book

There are massive resources across the web related to car information to make car selling and buying more transparent.

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These resources include tools and websites, allowing the customer to predict their current car's value or the price of their future car.

While this is amazing, people might find it confusing about which pricing guidance to trust.

Two of the biggest names in the car pricing industry are Edmunds and Kelly Blue Book. Each of these websites has its own customers who never use any other platform for buying or selling cars.

Our team conducted a thorough review of each website by analyzing almost all available customer reviews to get you the final conclusion and reveal the hidden truth. 

In this article, we provide the results of our thorough study on Edmunds VS Kelly Blue Book as guidance for car pricing. We first start with a high-level overview of how each website calculates its final values. Then, we highlight top true stories directly from real customers about their experience using Edmunds and Kelly Blue Book.

Edmunds VS Kelly Blue Book – How are prices calculated?


Both Edmunds and Kelly Blue Book are well known and trusted as the top places to check car prices. 

Each of those websites uses its price calculations criteria, making it hard to say one is better. 

In general, and according to automotive experts, there is no major difference between the final car value based on both websites. 

According to Bestcompany.com, Edmunds is one of the great websites to use for car pricing. “Certain functions can be tweaked to be even better, but overall, its variety of tools and services make Edmunds one of car buyers' favorite go-to resources.”

The same resource highlighted how great Kelly Blue Book is “Kelley Blue Book has been a trusted resource for car buyers, private sellers, and dealers for many decades and continues to be today. It is an easy, fast way to determine how much your current vehicle is worth if you are looking to sell your car and how much any car is worth if you are buying and want to make sure that you are getting a fair purchase price. KBB's reputation speaks for itself in this regard.”

It is still important to understand the criteria used to calculate cars values at each website.


  • Edmunds car values calculations



Founded in 1966, Edmunds started by publishing printed resources to guide car prices in the automotive world, including the Secrets of a Used Car Salesman and the “Inside Line” website.

Edmunds is well known and trusted by Kelly Blue Book themselves as they reported in their site: “Today, Edmunds maintains an excellent reputation as an independent source of care information, vehicle reviews, and vehicle pricing. They offer many resources for helping consumers buy a car.”

Regarding to car value calculations, Edmunds uses what’s called the “Car Value Appraisal Tool” and Kelly Blue Book said: “It can help tell you what your used car or truck is worth and can be used as comparison to other valuation sources like the Kelley Blue Book® Trade-In Value. When assessing vehicle condition, Edmunds asks owners to rate their car as one of five categories: “outstanding”. “clean,” “average” or “rough” or “damaged”


  • Kelly Blue Book car values calculations



Kelly Blue Book is considered the “Golden Standard” for car pricing in the car industry using their Blue Book Value.

The company started around 1926 by Les Kelly, who collected information about car pricing to generate the first published guidance on car pricing.

When it comes to car pricing criteria, Kelly Blue Book revealed the exact procedure they follow to evaluate car prices as they stated here “Blue Book Values reflect the automotive market, the season, and, especially, the part of the country where you might be located. Kelley Blue Book offers regionalized values and pricing for over 100 different areas of the US. Many of these differences may be subtle, but they help vehicle buyers and sellers come to consensus about what the car is worth. Transparency helps create consensus – and consensus is good.”


Edmunds VS Kelly Blue Book – Customers Reviews

Since both Edmunds and Kelly Blue Book provide great resources and tools to best help the customer predict car values, it might be challenging to determine which is better. 

Thus, many people find it helpful to listen to other people’s experiences and recommendations about using Edmunds or Kelly Blue Book for vehicle value estimates.

As we analyzed the main pros and cons of each website, we reviewed hundreds of customers' stories and feedback about their experience with both websites.

This section highlights the top stories that other people rated as helpful in larger review websites like ConsumerAffairs.com, dealerrater.com, trustpilot.com, and others.


  • What do people think of Edmunds?



Here are the top reviews related to Edmunds:


  • Customer #1


As I have so stated, this is a good place to start, for it will arm you with much need information to guide you through a buy. Having a fair price in mind before you arrive at a dealership gives you a lead on getting a fair deal, not to be one of those who paid too much. However, I caution you on the integrity of many of the referred dealerships, for many will do all they can to get every penny you have and can afford to spend, using surprise (unheard of, unadvertised, hidden) fees, to even rolling back into to the price standard delivery fees and inspection fees. Anyway, Edmunds.com is extremely helpful and educating for the consumer.”


  • Customer #2


Edmunds is a great place to not only buy cars but also for car reviews. In their reviews, they show the pros and cons of the vehicle, what’s new for 2020, (I forgot to mention that for car and driver) pricing and which one to buy. They have some specs of the car on the side. I just wish they had more specs like 0-60. There’s also a wildcard grading system. Edmunds also shows the trims they recommend. You can also read reviews about the car you’re researching. If you’d like, it’s also possible to write a review on your car to share with others your experience.”


  • Customer #3


I don't and don't plan to go thru Edmunds to buy my car. I'll do my research on Edmunds on quality and pricing, then go armed with the info to the local dealer. For research, I don't know of any better place to read about the good, bad, and ugly, without having to pay for it like Consumer Reports. I've not had any website technical or latency issues in the past, so I can't weigh in about problems like that that others have experienced. Could be Internet provider, clogs in the internet core, etc, something other than their website servers.”


  • Customer #4


Edmunds was helpful when I wanted to compare cars as well as information on certain models or brands. Gave me a bigger picture view on the market before I narrowed down my decision.”


  • What do people think of Kelly Blue Book



Here are the top reviews related to Kelly Blue Book:


  • Customer #1


Kelley Blue Book is perfect way to sell your car if you don`t want to deal with tire kickers, time wasters and no showers. Their process is fast, simple and easy to understand. Most of the reviews here are posted by people who tried to lie in their ICO statement about the condition of the vehicle and got mad because the damages that they tried to minimize or hide were discovered by the appraiser. I will give you a simple advice. Do not put false information and you will not get false numbers for your car! Be honest and your offer will be honest. If you hide something thinking that you can scam and lie the participating dealer be ready to realize that you lie yourself.”


  • Customer #2


I wanted to share my experience using the Kelly BB cash offer. I recently used the site and was very pleased. I had a 2007 Toyota Sienna XLE AWD with high mileage and non-working air conditioning. I submitted all the info that was asked via Kelly BB. I was very thorough, specific, and forthcoming regarding the condition of the van. I was the original owner. I immediately received 2 messages from dealerships. I took it to the closest dealership ( which was a very respectable Honda dealer) and received exactly what the “instant cash offer quote” had been. When I arrived at the dealership I had a check and was out the door in less than an hour. The person I dealt with at the Honda dealership was quite pleased with the accurate information I submitted. Using this method was perfect for me. I wasn't interested in the hassle of selling the car myself..the Kelly BB route saved me time and was super easy.”


  • Customer #3


I recently considered trading my car in for a new one. I got a great price on the new car, but the Dealer offered $2000 less than I was willing to accept for my trade. I purchased the car, but did NOT give them my trade.

Despite reading so many negative reviews, I reluctantly gave KBB cash offer a try. The KBB cash offer was $3,000 more than what the dealer had offered me for my trade. I received messages from 3-4 dealers, 1 of which seemed genuinely interested. I took the car in, reluctantly, fully expecting (and prepared) to be low-balled by at least $2,000 or more.

All I can say is that I was absolutely stunned when the dealer's offer was the same as the KBB instant cash offer. NOT AT ALL WHAT I WAS PREPARED FOR. The entire transaction took about an hour.

No one is more surprised than me at the outcome. My experience with KBB could not have been more positive.

I do not hesitate to post a negative review and call a company out when they've treated me badly. Likewise, it's only fair that I post a positive review and sing a company's praises when they treat me well.”


  • Customer #4


So I had an offer from Carvana, which was higher than the insult I'd received from CarMax on my Mercedes. While waiting for my appointment with Carvana, I pulled up KBB because I had nothing to lose–if I didnt like what they offered, I could keep my Carvana appointment.

KBB offered 19% more and I immediately had 2 dealerships contacting me. In less than 2 hours from getting the KBB online offer, I had a check in hand and was on my way.

The people who have been saying negative things about dealerships low-balling them, well, if you had been honest in your assessment of your car's condition, then you would have gotten what KBB said the value of the car was.”



Luckily, if you are shopping for a new car or would like to sell your old car, you no longer need to visit dealerships and waste your time reviewing paperwork.

Thanks to the great tools and websites that guide car pricing in the automotive industry. Two of the biggest names are Edmunds and Kelly Blue Book and many people wonder which website should they trust more.

The results of our thorough review showed that customers from both websites are satisfied with their experience. Furthermore, many people did not find a huge difference between car prices when using both websites except for very few situations where Kelly Blue Book might be slightly higher and other situations where Edmunds might be slightly higher.


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