Auto Trader launches the UK’s first car buying vending machine

  • UK’s first car buying vending machine launched in London
  • Is the worlds first contactless car vending machine
  • Part of a test being run by Auto Trader

This ground breaking vending machine gives motorists a chance to buy a brand-new car via contactless payment on their phone. It has been set up to illustrate Auto Trader’s pre-haggled prices and transparent price offering, something also featured on CarGurus website via the Good Price feature. The vending machine contains a Renault Zoe with a pre-haggled price, meaning it can be purchased on the spot.

Auto Trader has pushed the pre-haggled pricing as a result of a new study by the brand of 2,000 UK motorists that found over nine in 10 people (92%) admitted they are bad at haggling when it comes to buying a car, and 89% said they find haggling embarrassing and uncomfortable.

Haggling on prices (41%) topped their list of anxieties about buying a new car, along with hidden costs (39%), worrying about making the wrong decision (28%) and having to wait a long time to receive a car after buying it (25%).

The machine allows purchases up to £21,000, showcasing how consumers can “buy and go” without having to worry about any haggling on the price.

The vehicle comes with a price of £16,000 (RRP of £22,470) that has already been agreed with the dealer, meaning drivers don’t need to worry about trying to get the best price themselves. The price reflects the significant discounts buyers can find on new cars with Auto Trader’s pre-haggled prices.

Nearly seven in 10 (68%) buyers believe that if cars were sold online, pricing would have to be clearer and more consistent – like with the pre-haggled Renault Zoe installation.

A team of six engineers spent three months designing and building the contactless car dispenser. A custom-made point of sale system and key release function was created, alongside an integrated payment and door release mechanic.

A spokesperson for Auto Trader said: “Buying a brand-new car is an exciting experience, but it can often be tarnished by anxiety around haggling and knowing whether you’re looking at the right price.

“So today we’re showcasing a real-life version on what can be found on Auto Trader; brand new cars at transparent pre-haggled prices that you can drive away today.

“The only difference is that this Renault Zoe can be purchased at the touch of a card, testing London car buyer’s appetite for electric cars as well as a more instant car buying future.”

The car vending machine is a concept that has been done before, notably by Carvana in the US.

This example was used to pick-up already purchased cars by entering the buyers name and inserting a coin to release the vehicle.

Carbuco ask the question: Would you buy a car without visiting a showroom? I personally would as it removes the sales patter and certainly seems to be the way the market is moving towards with Volkswagen and Volvo offering an online purchasing journey and also a number of Car Stores being added to shopping centres and retail outlets.

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