General Motors has announced that it plans to expand its new online shopping tool that allows customers to bypass the showroom by purchasing their brand new vehicle online. The program, Shop-Click-Drive, lists a total of 48 participating dealers on its website, but GM reportedly plans to extend the new web-based application to its entire dealership network by the end of 2013.
According to the Shop-Click-Drive website, a vehicle can be purchased online from a participating dealer around the clock, 24/7, and in just five (5) short steps:1. Get Started - Select a vehicle from a participating dealership's website. Click here to find a participating dealer and click on "participating";
2. Estimate Payments - See available financing plans, the latest incentives, and estimate your trade-in value if applicable;
3. Apply for Credit - Complete your secure and confidential credit application online and hassle free;
4. Personalize & Protect - Shop for additional vehicle personalization and protection options, including GM accessories, extended warranties, and more;
5. Scheduled Delivery - Schedule a trade-in evaluation, arrange a test drive, sign the sales paperwork, and take delivery of the vehicle, all on your time schedule.
About 900 cars have been sold so far through the Shop-Click-Drive program. Of the 900, only 5 have elected to have the vehicle delivered directly to them, while the some 895 others have opted for a trip to the showroom to finalize the deal face-to-face.
As expected, many dealers are reportedly not fond of the new program, since it nearly eliminates their chance to sell consumers profitable service work, add-ons or finance and insurance products with their new cars. The option is still there to purchase these items, but the decision to purchase is more "pressure free" than at the dealership. Other dealers, however, reportedly see it as just another way to reach millennial purchasers who increasingly seek to make many purchases online.
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