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Alibaba’s Car Vending Machine due to launch next year

By Chris Dawson December 11, 2017 - 10:15 am

Alibaba’s Tmall e-commerce platform is offering select customers a chance to take out cars they’re thinking of buying for a three-day spin.

Tmall said it’s opening two “Super Test-Drive Centers,” one in Shanghai and one in Nanjing, as a prelude to the online-offline experience customers will soon have when it launches its “Auto Vending Machine” in January.

Tmall say that they will launch an ‘Auto Vending Machine’ to make “buying cars as easy as buying a can of Coke.” The so-called vending machine model will allow consumers to browse vehicles on their smartphones and purchase their new ride in only five minutes. Tmall’s idea with the two centers is to pair the ease of buying with a simple and convenient way to test-drive cars ahead of time.

Test Drives

Users can search for the keyword “Super Test-Drive” the Mobile Taobao app, which brings them to the event page, where they can select a model they want to test-drive. After submitting their basic information and confirming they are eligible, users can head to the designated physical test-drive center to pick up their potential new ride, via a log-in code or facial-recognition.

Users with good credit scores can sign up for three-day free test-drives of over 100 models from participating brands, including premium automakers Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Volvo and Audi.

Tmall Car Vending Machine

Alibaba have a new “new automotive retail model” which will be the key to making car vending machines a reality. Introduced during Tmall’s “6.18” mid-year sale in June, the model allows mobile shoppers with good credit scores to purchase a car in only five minutes.

Anyone with over 750 points on Sesame Credit, Alibaba’s credit-scoring system for consumers will be able to select a car model online, pay a 10% initial fee and pick up their new car. Then all they would need to do is to make monthly payments through Alipay until it is paid in full.

Then of course why hang around waiting for your car to be delivered? Just pick it up from the car vending machine and drive away immediately!

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