kelley blue book
kelley blue book

Table of Contents

Kelley Blue Book

Kelley Blue Book, headquartered in Irvine, California, is a leading vehicle valuation and automotive research company well-regarded by consumers and the automotive industry alike. Owned by the Cox Automotive subsidiary of Cox Enterprises, Kelley Blue Book provides trusted insights and expertise in the realm of vehicle valuation and automotive research.

Kelley Blue Book, often referred to as KBB, stands as an authoritative source in the automotive world, offering invaluable insights for both consumers and professionals alike. Established in 1926, this venerable institution has evolved from a simple car dealership price list to a comprehensive digital database, providing detailed information on vehicle pricing, automotive reviews, and ratings. Its reputation for unbiased, accurate valuations makes it a go-to resource for anyone looking to buy, sell, or trade a vehicle. By meticulously tracking market trends, depreciation rates, and wholesale prices, KBB ensures that both buyers and sellers can enter transactions with confidence, armed with reliable data.

The platform’s user-friendly interface allows individuals to effortlessly navigate through a wide array of services, including new car prices, used car values, and vehicle condition assessments. Whether you’re in the market for a brand-new SUV, a reliable family sedan, or a pre-loved compact car, Kelley Blue Book provides a wealth of information to help make informed decisions. Its valuation tools are particularly notable, offering personalized estimates that account for factors such as mileage, condition, and regional market differences. This level of detail empowers users to understand the fair market value of their vehicle or a potential purchase, ensuring transparency and fairness in the buying or selling process.

Moreover, Kelley Blue Book extends beyond mere valuations and sales advice. The platform also features vehicle reviews, comparison tools, and a suite of articles and videos aimed at educating consumers on various automotive topics. From in-depth analyses of the latest electric vehicles to tips on vehicle maintenance and financing, KBB serves as an all-encompassing resource for anyone interested in the automotive industry. Its commitment to providing accurate, up-to-date information cements Kelley Blue Book’s status as an indispensable guide in the complex world of car buying and selling, making it a trusted advisor in automotive matters for nearly a century.








Steve Lind

Leslie Kelley


Subsidiary of Cox Automotive

Irvine, California, U.S.

Cox Automotive

Key People

  • Les Kelley, Founder
  • Buster Kelley
  • Steve Lind, President


  • 1918; 106 years ago (as The Kelley Kar Company)
  • 1926; 98 years ago (as Kelley Blue Book)


Information services, E-commerce software, Automotive


The origins of the company trace back to 1918 when Les Kelley established the Kelley Kar Company. Starting with just three Model T Fords, Kelley, alongside his brother Buster, laid the foundation for what would become a pioneering venture in the automotive industry. Utilizing data gathered from their dealership, Kelley compiled the first Blue Book in 1926, a seminal guide used extensively in the automotive trade for assessing car values. Over the decades, the Kelley family continued to operate their dealership in Southern California while evolving their business focus.

By the 1960s, the company transitioned from a traditional car dealership to a specialized publisher, honing in on the production of their automobile price guide. Notably, Kelley Blue Book was at the forefront of innovation, being the first publication to incorporate mileage as a determining factor in a car’s value. In 1995, recognizing the growing importance of the internet, Kelley Blue Book launched its company website, offering valuable tips and pricing information from its established hardcopy guide.

In December 2010, Kelley Blue Book underwent a significant development as it was acquired by, subsequently operating as a subsidiary of, Inc. This strategic move facilitated synergies between two prominent entities in the automotive sector. Furthermore, in 2013, Kelley Blue Book expanded its reach by forming a strategic alliance with Bitauto Holdings Ltd., paving the way for its entry into the Chinese market and signaling its commitment to global growth and innovation.


Kelley Blue Book inked a two-year deal with Hendrick Motorsports in 2014, becoming a primary sponsor for Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s No. 88 Chevrolet SS NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team. This partnership marked a significant collaboration between the renowned automotive resource and one of the leading names in motorsports.

From 2012 to 2014, Kelley Blue Book garnered accolades for its excellence in online auto shopping. The Harris Poll honored the brand as the Online Auto Shopping Brand of the Year for three consecutive years, showcasing its commitment to providing top-notch services to consumers. Furthermore, the company’s dedication to innovation and user experience was recognized with a WebAward in the automotive category for two consecutive years, highlighting its outstanding website design and functionality.


The company offers market value prices for various types of automobiles, including both new and used vehicles, as well as motorcycles, snowmobiles, and personal watercraft. Kelley Blue Book provides a fair market range and fair purchase price for both new and used automobiles, which are regularly adjusted based on actual transactions to reflect changing market conditions. Additionally, for new automobiles, Kelley Blue Book furnishes information regarding the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) and dealer invoice price. As for used cars, Kelley Blue Book provides data on typical listing prices, certified pre-owned prices, trade-in values, and private party values. Moreover, Kelley Blue Book offers expert and consumer vehicle reviews and ratings, along with 5-year cost-to-own information for new cars.


What is the Kelley Blue Book used for?

The Kelley Blue Book, often referred to simply as KBB, is an essential resource for anyone involved in the automotive world. Whether you’re buying, selling, or just window-shopping for cars, KBB offers up-to-date information on car values. It helps you determine the fair market price for new and used vehicles, ensuring you get the best deal possible or receive a fair amount when selling your car.

What does KBB stand for?

KBB stands for Kelley Blue Book. It’s a trusted source for automotive pricing and value information, named after its founder, Les Kelley.

How do you calculate the book value of a car?

Calculating the book value of a car involves considering several factors, including the vehicle’s make, model, age, mileage, and condition. Kelley Blue Book provides a user-friendly interface where you can input these details to get an estimated market value. It’s a blend of science and art, using historical transaction data and adjusting for current market conditions.

Who publishes Kelley Blue Book?

Kelley Blue Book is published by Cox Automotive, a leading provider of automotive services and solutions. The company has maintained the tradition of providing accurate and impartial car values since the brand’s inception in 1926.

What is the Canadian version of the Kelley Blue Book?

In Canada, the equivalent resource for car valuations is the Canadian Black Book. It offers similar services, providing values for new and used vehicles, and is widely used by consumers and professionals in the automotive industry across Canada.

Who wrote Blue Book?

The term “Blue Book” generally refers to a guide or manual on a specific subject. The Kelley Blue Book was initially compiled by Les Kelley, a car dealer, to provide an authoritative guide to car values. However, if we’re talking about “Blue Book” in contexts outside of automotive, it could refer to various guides or manuals authored by different individuals or organizations, depending on the subject matter.

Which country publishes Blue Book?

If we’re discussing the Kelley Blue Book, it’s published in the United States by Cox Automotive. However, the term “Blue Book” can also refer to official government publications in several countries, which are typically comprehensive reports on government or parliamentary matters. Each of these would be published by the respective country’s government or authoritative body.

What are the four main parts of the Bluebook?

The “Bluebook” mentioned here seems to refer to the legal citation guide known as “The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation.” This guide, essential for legal writing and scholarship, is divided into four main parts:

  1. Bluepages – Practical legal citation guidance tailored for practitioners.
  2. Whitepages – Advanced citation rules for academic publications.
  3. Tables – A collection of tables used to find the correct abbreviation for citation sources.
  4. Index – An extensive index to help users quickly locate specific citation rules.

Each part plays a crucial role in ensuring that legal documents and academic papers are cited accurately and consistently across the legal profession.

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