German vehicle manufacturer Audi is to fully launch its new online sales platform in a bid to entice consumers to purchase cars without having to leave their sofa.
The company is offering used vehicles via a website in Germany, and expects around 200 dealer partners to participate in the platform, following a pilot phase which saw 70 dealerships take part. The scheme is expected to launch in early 2018 and can be accessed via dealer websites and the central Audi used car exchange site.
‘It is important for us to have a digital solution that covers all the steps from start to finish and from which dealers and customers stand to gain equally,’ says Martin Wallenborn, head of digitalisation sales in Germany, ‘For Audi partners online sales are a useful addition to dealership outlets. For the first time, customers can complete all the steps involved in the car purchase, including finance, conveniently, simply and securely online.’
Buyers can have the car delivered through the Audi partner to wherever and whenever they like in Germany. If the customer is looking for finance, a creditworthiness check, loan decision and drafting of the finance agreement are completed in real time. The customer also has full flexibility to decide at the end of the term whether to give back the automobile for a fixed residual value or whether they would like to continue financing the vehicle afterwards.
The online platform has been developed as part of the extensive campaign to create the digital dealership – as a joint, agile project between Audi, dealerships and Audi Financial Services. ‘By involving all project partners from the outset, we managed to integrate the requirements directly and practically into the project,’ confirms Wallenborn. ‘The result is a practical, intuitive platform for customers and dealers.’
Meanwhile, Korean company Kia has seen a steady growth in customers in Germany, with 600,000 vehicles registered. The company has now launched a consumer portal, mykia.de, providing information and individual offers. Customers are granted access by signing in using their chassis number to confirm ownership.
After login, the homepage shows the Kia model of the user, selected on the basis of the chassis number. An interactive schedule provides an overview of all customer related data
such as the next inspection, the next main inspection or special Kia actions. Also earlier dates are available, as well as the latest news from the manufacturer. There is also the opportunity to arrange workshop visits.
The customer platform is a ‘tailor-made and service-oriented brand experience,’ says Steffen Cost, Managing Director of Kia Motors Deutschland. The platform is to be continually developed and expanded.