🚗 Will car makers go direct-to-consumer like Tesla?
Plus, what will car buying look like in 5-10 years?
Today’s topic: Highlights from this week’s CarDealershipGuy Podcast
Was this email forwarded to you? Subscribe here to get real-time insights from the dealership floor.
Reading time: < 2 min
The Future of Car Buying with Steve Greenfield, CEO and founder of Automotive Ventures
Hear directly from one of the most knowledgeable and influential experts and thought leaders in auto-tech and mobility.
If you want to listen to the episode now, click the links below:
Steve is CEO and Founder of Automotive Ventures, an early-stage automotive technology and mobility VC fund that helps entrepreneurs raise growth capital and accelerate their businesses.
Steve served as TrueCar’s Senior Vice President of Strategy and Business Development, and AutoTrader’s Vice President of Product Management and Business Development, overseeing the acquisitions of vAuto, Kelley Blue Book, HomeNet Automotive, VinSolutions and DealerScience.
In this episode we discussed:
How will the car-buying experience change for consumers in 5-10 years?
Are smaller dealerships at risk of extinction?
Will auto manufacturers go direct-to-consumer like Tesla?
The most compelling investment opportunities in the EV space
The main trends that Automotive Ventures is focused on
“Everything-as-a-Service”: Will you really have to subscribe to your car’s heated seats?
Here are a few snippets from our conversation.
CDG: What will car buying look like in 10 years for consumers?
Steve: We're gonna see the majority of transactions happening face-to-face at the dealership. There'll be a lot of technology that enables transparency and negotiation upfront. But I think that the physical handoff of the vehicle and some of the negotiation for the majority of transactions will still be at the dealership.
CDG: Why has it been so difficult to change the car buying process?
Steve: Buying a car is a very large purchase and there’s a lot of uncertainty when it comes to financing and a consumer’s interest rate. Until dealers don’t bridge that gap…
CDG: What will happen to small dealerships? Will they survive?
Steve: I think that smaller mom-and-pop shops will have an increasingly hard time differentiating. Especially with everything that's going on with car manufacturers in many cases pushing towards an agency or a hybrid agency model — taking on more of the sale.
CDG: Is the agency model realistic?
Steve: Car manufacturers think that if they own more of the consumer experience they’ll be able to provide a more consistent and pleasant online buying process, while dealers will remain their point of distribution and will help service the cars afterward. These same car manufacturers are forgetting about something though... as they overproduce inventory and get slaughtered by Wall Street for doing so, they will realize the negative ramifications of holding inventory on the balance sheet and deal with massive losses.
CDG: Do you think we're kind of going too headstrong into the EV segment relative to demand? How do you see this playing out?
Steve: One in five chargers aren't working right now, according to JD Power. When the handoff between the car and the EV charger doesn't work effectively, then we're going to have massive problems with convincing consumers to buy these things at a certain point. Government will spend a lot of money stimulating demand but when incentives run out, the truth will be told in terms of what the actual demand is. My guess is EVs will peak…
CDG: Where do you see opportunities in the EV space?
Steve: Opportunities are anywhere you look. Battery chemistry, charging infrastructure, charging hardware and software, and more…
CDG: What's the most important areas that you're focused on when you're looking for companies and opportunities right now?
Steve: Vehicle features on demand, addressing vehicle servicing inefficiencies in the era of over-the-air updates, and more…
🎙️ Want deeper insights?
Listen to the full episode by clicking the links below:
Thank you for joining me again here on the CarDealershipGuy newsletter. See you soon!
Want to leave a review and tell me your thoughts about the newsletter? Reply to this email and let me know.
Did you like this edition of the newsletter?
Tell us what you think - we want to be the best.