The online car sales experiment of Renault has failed in Russia

The online car sales experiment of Renault has failed in Russia


Vedomosti.- The online car sales experiment of Renault has failed in Russia. Renault has become the first car manufacturer amongst the foreign companies to try to organise vehicle sales through the internet this year. The French company has offered its new product manufactured in Moscow: the Renault Arkana coupe-crossover to the clients. 300 limited series Edition One vehicles were put on the market with prices starting from 1,419,990 rubles. For comparison: the regular Arkana costs 1,015,000 rubles.

The main condition of the online car sales experiment was that the client had to pay the full price of the automobile through the internet. Free home delivery of the vehicle was the bonus of the purchase. The company began to take pre-orders in May and the official sales (including 100% prepayment) have started in July. “A special interface has been developed for the convenience of the clients, which enables payments from a number of bank cards within the duration of a few days,” as told by the Renault representative. “Thereby, the clients are given the option to use either a debit or a credit card”.

However, the online car sales service has not been appreciated by the clients. According to the representative, only 2 cars have been sold out of 100. The remaining 298 Arkana limited series have also been sold through the internet, however, according to the usual online purchase scheme, rather than 100% prepayment, the representative added. The clients have visited the dealer’s online showroom, paid a symbolic deposit of 10,000 – 15,000 on the website, then went to the dealer centre, where they drew up the contract of sale, paid the balance and received the vehicle.

The representative has neither told what conclusions were drawn from the testing of the new service, nor whether it will be extended on the other models of the company. “We will study and analyse the results of the online car sales experiment” – he said. “We will give information about the plans for the further development of online business”.

As a rule, the clients are only persuaded to pay for the car after they have examined it personally, said Oleg Moseev, the chairman of the Association of Russian Automobile Dealers. The high costs of acquiring and transaction, amounting to 1.5% – 2% of the price of the car, are other factors hindering the sales of the new cars through 100% payment over the internet, as pointed out by Moseev.