Hyundai Motor America CEO John Krafcik called the car-buying experience “so tortuous,” that consumers would rather go to a dentist appointment than visit a car dealership a couple years ago at an industry conference. In that spirit, Edmunds.com recently addressed these tough issues affecting dealer sales and service at a two-day Hackomotive brainstorming session and contest to rewrite the car-buying and ownership experience. More than 100 participants from inside and outside the auto industry participated to win thousands of award dollars. More than a half-dozen of the teams that presented ideas for improving car buying borrowed ideas from online dating and matchmaking services. ”Most of the ideas conveyed the theme that car shopping is not just about making a purchase but about creating a trust-based relationship,” said Edmunds.com CEO Avi Steinlauf.
The two winning teams each took home $10,000, and recommended a process that used social media and other input to match a car salesperson to an individual car shopper based on shared interests or a specific expertise. Some of the team names represented the intersection between online dating and car shopping – with Kar Match, eCarmony, Car Cupid and Car Match by Team Love-o-Matic, being among them.