Speed Reads

  • American Auto Transport offers open and enclosed shipping for businesses and consumers across the U.S., plus internationally.
  • There aren’t many reviews on American Auto Transport, which shows that it isn’t a popular provider, despite its age. 
  • Customer reviews for American Auto Transport are mixed. 
  • Our team was unable to reach the company for a quote or to get more information in our review process.

If you’re looking to ship a car, you may have come across American Auto Transport in your search. The provider has been around for nearly 20 years, but how does it compare to other auto transport companies?

Our reviews team has spent over 300 hours researching the best car shipping companies in the country. We’ve analyzed hundreds of online reviews and surveyed customers ourselves to learn about their experiences. In this article, we take an in-depth look at American Auto Transport’s costs, services, reputation, and reviews to help you determine whether it’s a good choice to ship your vehicle.

Our American Auto Transport Review And Methodology

You have many choices to ship your car, but not all offer the same services or customer experience. That’s why our team dove into American Auto Transport from multiple angles. Below is a summary of our research and how American Auto Transport fares in each category. Overall, we rate American Auto Transport 3.2 out of 5.0 stars.

Reputation: 4.1 Stars

This category takes into account how long a business has been in play, any accolades or awards the business has won in the past, and its ratings and reviews on the Better Business Bureau (BBB) website. The BBB is an organization that evaluates a company’s business practices, customer satisfaction, and licensing information.

American Auto Transport gets a high score for its reputation because it’s been in business since 2004 and has an A+ rating on the BBB site with no complaints.

Cost: 2.5 Stars

To compare auto shipping companies on competitive pricing, our team gets multiple quotes for various vehicles and distances. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to get quotes from American Auto Transport’s website or on the phone, which is a huge red flag in our book. That lack of transparency on cost is why give this company a much lower rating for the category.

Services: 3.1 Stars

Services from American Auto Transport include open and enclosed transport with door-to-door delivery. These are very standard services for the industry, which helps raise the score for the company. Open transport leaves your car exposed to the elements but is cheaper than enclosed transport. Having both options makes American Auto Transport more versatile and accessible for customers with different needs.

But this company also offers special services like GPS tracking and insurance add-ons. American Auto Transport doesn’t offer many extra services beyond the standard shipping options found with most companies. This is why the auto transport broker gets a middle-of-the-road rating in this category.

Customer Experience: 3.3 Stars

To get a clear outlook on the customer experience of a shipping company, our Motor1 reviews team combs through customer reviews on sites like the BBB, Trustpilot, and Google. We also  perform our own shopper analysis, which involves calling customer service representatives and shopping online to get a sense of the responsiveness and helpfulness of each car transporter. 

Unfortunately, American Auto Transport doesn’t have many reviews to comb through – just two on the BBB and a handful on Google. Reviews are mixed, which is why the company scores 3.3 for this category.

American Auto Transport Overview

Founded: 2004
Headquarters: Downers Grove, Illinois
Service area: United States
BBB rating: A+

Located in Downers Grove, Illinois, near Chicago, American Auto Transport Inc. is approaching two decades in the car shipping industry. The company offers a variety of auto shipping services for both individuals and car dealers.

Note: We are reviewing the company with the website American-Auto-Transport.com. There are a few other companies with the name American Auto Transport around the country.

Pros Shipping services for dealerships and individuals Transport options for alternative vehicles including ATVs and motorcycles No complaints to the Better Business Bureau (BBB) in the last three years
Cons Very few customer reviews online Difficult to contact Website lacks details

American Auto Transport Reviews

American Auto Transport doesn’t have many reviews online. The company has an A+ rating from the BBB but has only two reviews from customers on the website. Both of those reviews are negative, resulting in an average rating of 1.0 out of 5.0 stars. One review mentions that not being able to contact their driver was their main source of frustration. Another cites constant sales calls after submitting their contact information as their main issue.

It’s worth noting that American Auto Transport has zero complaints filed through the BBB over the last three years.

American Auto Transport does have a few more reviews on Google with an average rating of 2.2 out of 5.0. We’ll summarize trends from these below.

Positive American Auto Transport Reviews

Customers with a positive experience praise American Auto Transport for good communication and fast shipping. One reviewer from a dealership said they’ve shipped thousands of cars with the company and that the drivers were always on time.

American Auto Transport Complaints

According to responses from American Auto Transport, several customers reviewed the wrong company and should have contacted American Auto Transport based in Florida. Discarding those reviews, there are still a few negative reviews for the company based in Downers Grove, Illinois. Some customers had a hard time reaching agents during business hours and others experienced added fees during transport.

American Auto Transport Services

The American Auto Transport website doesn’t share many details about the car shipping services the company offers. However, the company offers at least the following service options:

  • Door-to-door transport: American Auto Transport offers door-to-door shipping services, meaning you can get your vehicle picked up and delivered close to locations you choose.
  • Tracking on all shipments: A full-time transit clerk tracks each shipment, allowing you to check your car’s status during transit.
  • Auto auction shipping: American Auto Transport can help arrange shipping for cars bought at auction.
  • Multi-vehicle shipping: The company provides shipping options for car dealerships and other businesses that need to move whole fleets of vehicles.
  • Oversize shipping: American Auto Transport offers shipping services for oversize loads, something not all providers offer.
  • Expedited shipping: The company’s website mentions that the company can ship vehicles sold at auction within one or two days.
  • Alternative vehicle shipping: The company allows customers to ship alternative vehicles like 4x4s and motorcycles.

Because we were unable to reach anyone at American Auto Transport, we couldn’t confirm whether the provider offers other shipping options. If you don’t see a service for your transport needs listed above, it’s possible that the company offers it, so it may be worth calling to find out.

How Much Does American Auto Transport Cost?

Our team reached out to American Auto Transport for quotes to ship a 2018 Toyota RAV4 from Los Angeles to Houston using open and enclosed transport services. We submitted requests through the site’s quote tool and called the company’s service phone number. In both cases, we didn’t get quotes or a response.

Average Car Shipping Costs

While we didn’t receive a quote from American Auto Transport, it might be helpful to know what other providers charge for car shipping services. The table below shows car shipping quotes we’ve received for an open container shipment for the same vehicle from Los Angeles to Houston.

CompanyDistanceCar Shipping Quote
Montway Auto Transport1,556 miles$1,369
AmeriFreight1,556 miles$1,575
Sherpa Auto Transport1,556 miles$1,199
Easy Auto Ship1,556 miles$1,589

Our team conducted an auto shipping consumer survey that polled 1,000 people who had experience shipping cars or shopping for auto transport services. When asked how much they paid for their vehicle shipments, just over 41 percent of respondents said they paid between $1,000 and $1,999.

Bar chart showing car shipping costs according to consumer survey participants.

Factors That Affect Car Shipping Costs

Car shipping quotes can only give a general idea of how much you might pay for vehicle transport services. That’s because many factors go into calculating your car shipping costs, including:

  • Shipping distance: The vast majority of car shippers charge by the mile. The per-mile rate tends to go down as the distance increases. That means that while cross-country shipments cost more overall, the per-mile rate is less than for short shipments.
  • Shipping time: Many auto shippers can expedite your shipment, but doing so will cost extra. Customers who can be flexible and book further in advance typically find better rates.
  • Transport type: You can save money by shipping your car via open carrier, but doing so leaves your car at higher risk of being damaged. Enclosed carrier shipping offers greater protection for an additional fee.
  • Delivery method: Some shippers give you an opportunity to save money by allowing terminal-to-terminal shipping, which is between two points chosen by the company. Door-to-door shipping is more convenient but usually more expensive.
  • Vehicle type: Larger vehicles, such as trucks and SUVs, cost more to ship than smaller cars, like sedans and coupes.
  • Time of year: Car shipping is a seasonal industry. Rates tend to be at their highest in January and during summer months.
  • Insurance: Many car carriers have their own insurance policies to cover damages during transit. However, you may want to purchase additional coverage for peace of mind.

How To Ship A Car With American Auto Transport

American Auto Transport’s website doesn’t list specific steps for how to ship a car. However, using an auto transport company to move a car is a relatively straightforward process.

  1. Get a quote: You can request a free quote from American Auto Transport through its quote tool or by calling the company directly. We were unable to get a quote using either method, however.
  2. Book a shipment: Once you receive an auto transport quote that works for you, you can book your shipment with a representative from your shipping provider. This typically requires a deposit.
  3. Prepare your vehicle: To get your vehicle ready for shipping, remove all your belongings. Some shippers allow you to pack personal items in the vehicle as cargo but may have weight restrictions. Take photos of your vehicle’s exterior for your records in case it’s damaged during transit.
  4. Meet your driver for pickup: On the day of your shipment, you or a representative who’s authorized to sign paperwork need to meet your driver at the time of pickup. The two of you will go over details, note any existing damage to your vehicle, and sign the bill of lading.
  5. Meet your driver for delivery: You or a representative will meet the truck driver at the point of delivery. Once again, you’ll inspect your vehicle and note any new damage. You’ll also need to sign the bill of lading upon delivery and pay the remainder of your shipping fee.

Some car movers accept credit cards or online payments like PayPal, but many only accept cash upon delivery. Confirm what payment methods are available before meeting with your driver.

What To Know For A Successful Shipment

Unfortunately, shipping a car isn’t as simple and easy as sending a package in the mail. If this is your first experience with auto shipping, there are some things you should know. First, the industry is made up of brokers (like American Auto Transport) and carriers, which are independent businesses that own hauling trucks.

Carriers Vs. Brokers

Transport carriers can choose not to do a job if the rate isn’t high enough or if the customer starts out being difficult to work with. The carrier will give you a window of a few hours for pickup and delivery, but they can’t give an exact time down to the minute. A shipping schedule with a carrier is also somewhat unpredictable, because the carrier will be moving other vehicles at the same time.

It’s usually much easier to ship your car when you do it through a broker, because a broker will have access to an entire network of carriers. This way, the broker can find a suitable carrier that can work for your particular shipping dates and needs. Brokers manage the entire shipping process for you, and some even have special tracking services to keep you updated on shipments.

Door-To-Door Shipping

Door-to-door shipping is only approximate. You may need to meet the truck driver at a nearby parking lot if they can’t drive a semi into your neighborhood comfortably. The driver will make the final decision on where to park the truck – not the customer. Carriers would rather drop your car off in a safe location than risk their neck violating any parking or street laws, so it’s important to be flexible.

Our Take On American Auto Transport: 3.2 Out of 5.0 Stars

American Auto Transport is somewhat difficult to pin down as a shipping provider. The company’s website is short on details, making it hard to know exactly what it offers. The car transport company’s lack of response when we requested quotes is also concerning.

We have a hard time recommending American Auto Transport to individuals. However, the company may be a good source of shipping solutions for businesses that deal with fleets or large inventories of vehicles.

Other Recommendations For Car Shipping

While we don’t give an enthusiastic recommendation for American Auto Transport, there are plenty of great options for auto transport providers. Montway Auto Transport and AmeriFreight are two of the companies that made our list of the best car shipping companies in our industry-wide review. We recommend getting car shipping quotes online from providers so you can compare and find the best rates.

Montway Auto Transport: 4.7 stars

Montway Auto Transport topped our rankings of the best car shipping companies for its low shipping rates and celebrated customer service. After 15 years in the shipping industry, this broker has served over 900,000 customers and delivered over 1 million vehicles. Combined with a number of useful shipping options, these factors were enough to earn Montway the title of Best Overall in our industry-wide review.

Read more: Montway Auto Transport review

AmeriFreight: 4.5 stars

AmeriFreight is one of the biggest car shipping providers in the country. While the company’s competitive rates, excellent customer service reputation, and wide range of shipping options are selling points, our team loved AmeriFreight’s numerous discount opportunities. You can find saving opportunities for students, first responders, active-duty military, and more.

Read more: AmeriFreight review

American Auto Transport Review: FAQ

Below are the most frequently asked questions about American Auto Transport and car shipping in general: