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Ford And Alibaba Have Launched A Giant Car 'Vending Machine' In China

28 March 2018

Customers can keep the auto for three days. Alibaba plans to release the vending machine technology to the entire auto industry.

Alibaba and Ford signed a deal to form a partnership past year that would see both companies working together on new technological opportunities.

Ford Motor (F) and Alibaba (BABA) unveiled a giant vehicle vending machine in China, part of an online car-shopping push with far-reaching implications for the automotive industry.

They will thus have plenty of time to get used to the new vehicle and decide whether or not they want to purchase it.

The concept of storing cars in mechanical facilities isn't new, in fact, its roots date back to the early 1900s but this system has rarely been used to sell cars.

Gu Wanguo, general manager of Vehicles at Tmall Auto, said the auto vending machine is an important step in Alibaba's new retail push. They then enter their information, pay a "small" fee and take a selfie. Test drives, by the way, come free, but you got to have a very respectable credit score on Alibaba's Zhima credit-scoring service.

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Ford's Giant "Car Vending Machine" Is Now Open for Business in China.

There is no salesperson at the location of the vending machine and everything is done through the app.

"We are looking for ways to simplify customers' lives and give them the ultimate try-before-you-buy experience", said Dean Stoneley, vice president of marketing at Ford Asia Pacific, at a launch event.

"Consumers can use the internet to access more accurate, convenient services and get a deeper understanding into particular vehicles". "If we lengthen the duration of test-drives, consumers can make buying decisions with more confidence and ease", Cao Zhenyu, a senior executive at Changan Ford Automobile, a Ford joint venture headquartered in Chongqing said. The U.S. based dealer Carvana also uses a similar method of operation and has set up a popular auto vending machine.

Alibaba is no stranger to selling cars online and via mobile apps: in 2016, a flash sale on its site saw 100 Maserati cars sold in 18 seconds. Incidentally, the company had recently made it to the headlines for its plan to construct a seven-storied auto vending machine in Chesterfield.

Ford And Alibaba Have Launched A Giant Car 'Vending Machine' In China