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Hyundai and Amazon to let people order test drives online

Hyundai and Amazon have partnered up to let customers order test drives of the Hyundai Elantra, right from Amazon’s website. The pilot program — called “Prime Now. Drive Now.” — is under the umbrella of Amazon’s same-day delivery service and it’s basically just a way to schedule test drives in advance.

Given how much of a nightmare car dealerships can be, it’s actually an excellent idea. Unfortunately, the program only runs for two weekends (August 20th–21st and August 27th–28th) and only in LA and Orange County. And only for the 2017 Hyundai Elantra.

Prospective buyers can head to Amazon’s website and schedule a 45–60 minute test drive — with the car brought to their work, home, coffee shop, or wherever — and a “trained expert” will be onboard to answer any questions. If they’re interested, participants will be sent to their local Hyundai dealer to buy the car. (What, I can’t buy it on Amazon?)

It’s all a bit of a marketing stunt, coordinated by Hyundai’s advertising and media agencies, but that’s okay. I recently ordered a new Chevy Volt and was deeply disappointed with my dealership experiences until I was able to complete the entire transaction over email with a friend-of-a-friend at a dealership six hours away.

Anything that can improve the dealership experience (which isn’t hard to do) sounds good to us — but when will I be able to just buy a car straight through Amazon?


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