1) Rothwell, Leeds – 1961

Central Auction Mart (a precursor to today’s business) had firmly established itself in central Leeds during the 50s, but a compulsory purchase order of the site in 1960 left the owners searching for a new home for the business. A site in Rothwell, just outside Leeds, seemed like the right fit and the auction centre built there – which remains our headquarters to this day – was the first purpose-built motor auction centre in the whole of Europe.

2) CAM transport – 1970

The business’ knack for innovation also came to the fore once again when Central Auction Mart pioneered multi-deck transporters for motor auctioneers. The transporters collected and transported multiple units bought at auction to motor traders for the first time. Seeing the success of the transporters, CAM Transport was swiftly set up, operating nationally with 80 vehicle transporters. At its height, the business secured big contracts with the likes of BMW, Nissan, Rover and Lada.

3) Virtual auctions – 1991

The early 90s was rife with new and evolving technologies and the automotive industry wasn’t exempt from innovation, with Bristol & West (another precursor to today’s business) at the forefront. By 1991, buyers and sellers could now transact virtually for the first time through the satellite TV service AuctionVision. Auctions were streamed via satellite television, saving time for buyers who could now purchase vehicles at home or from the office.

4) Modern remarketing - 1993

The start of remarketing as we know it today - i.e. an end-to-end de-fleet sales proposition - can perhaps be traced back to 1993 with the start of a new de-fleet contract between CMA and Toyota. The contract involved the de-fleet and refurbishment of all Toyota’s daily rental vehicles. Once back to retail-ready condition, CMA then managed the sale of these vehicles into the Toyota dealer network.

5) Manheim Colchester – 2012

Inspired by the huge multi-lane auctions in the USA, Manheim Colchester became the largest auction centre in Europe—and also the first with four lanes—when it opened in 2012. The Thursday evening sale at Colchester remains one of the most famous and busiest motor auction events in the UK to this day.


Manheim at 100

Throughout the year we're celebrating Manheim's 100th birthday in the UK. We've set up a dedicated 'Manheim at 100' where we reveal some fascinating stories and photos from Manheim's past. Click here to learn more.