Ford Looking To Move Away From Crowded Dealerships, Towards Online Ordering
The pandemic has changed the way people do things. From eating at restaurants to buying cars, the process has been modified. Ford thinks those changes are here to stay.
The automaker believes rather than dealerships, a build-to-order process is way to go for the car buying process. You can now spec and build the exact car you want online down to the trim level and color so why not take it one step further and purchase online as well? Europeans have been doing it for awhile now.
Ford CEO, Jim Farley, told Reuters that “We are really committed to going to an order-based system and keeping inventories at 50 to 60 days’ supply. I know we are wasting money on incentives.”
In addition to people not wanting or needing the dealership and test drive experience, supply issues have cause problems for dealerships as well. The latest issue is a chip shortage across the board for all automakers. The shortage of chips results in a shortage of vehicles on dealer lots. This results in people resorting back to browsing online to look at the inventory they want.
To accommodate this, Ford introduced Ford Express Buy. It’s an online-only way to purchase a Ford vehicle in the U.S. While it’s being tested, customers can only purchase the Mustang Mach-E however, other models will likely soon be added.
Ford’s President of the Americas and International Markets Group, Kumar Galhotra, elaborated on the process saying “You can start building your vehicle, pricing it, put it in the cart, and you can go all the way to make a transaction. Ford Credit can approve the customer’s credit in seconds, and you can make the payment and the dealer can deliver the car to your home.”
Before long, car dealerships may be a thing of the past.