Online used car seller company Carvana, based in Arizona, USA, have launched the world’s first fully automated, coin-operated car vending machines.
The machine itself is in Nashville, Tennessee, and can hold up to 20 cars at a time. Customers select their names from a kiosk and insert a Carvana-branded coin into the machine. The car is then moved from the tower onto a track and delivered down by a series of robotics to a delivery bay. It can then be test-driven, exchanged and refunded. And everyone using the machine is sent a personalised video of their vending experience, to share on social media channels.
Carvana said that customers were interested in picking up their cars rather than relying upon delivery. Their CEO Ernie Garcia described the vending machine as a “unique pick-up option”, and promised that those who didn’t live in the Nashville area could claim $200 towards their air fare, a ride from the airport and a Carvana employee-organised road trip back home if they wanted to try it out! Nashville was chosen because of its proximity to Carvana’s distribution centers in Atlanta and Dallas and the availability of desirable real estate, he said.
Carvana is planning to open more car vending machines in the U.S., with Arizona among the states being considered, Garcia said.
“The cost to operate is meaningfully less than the cost to deliver to the person’s house, which is less than operating a traditional car dealership,” Garcia said. “We can still can offer $1,500 to $2,000 savings (per car)”.
It’s certainly a novelty for now. But would you prefer to pick-up your car, or have it delivered?
Author Lex Barber