A new study indicates that automobile buyers may be increasing their reliance on the Internet...

A new study indicates that automobile buyers may be increasing their reliance on the Internet reviews as they ponder their various choices. According to Maritz Research, online auto shopping has advanced to the point that 11.4% of recent buyers even skipped taking a test drive before taking the plunge with a new vehicle. It's a disturbing trend for automakers and dealers used to impressing potential customers behind the wheel - instead of in front of the screen.

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Comments (8)
  • bdiem
    , contributor
    Comments (7) | Send Message
    Dealing with dealers is often a painful experieince for people, because so much money is involved, and salesmen working on commission can be thinking of themselves more than their customer at times. This is the social era; it is no surprise that people would filter their choices through the experience of friends and others, in order to limit their exposure to a potentially distressing situtation.
    13 Aug 2012, 02:56 PM Reply Like
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
    bdiem------Well put
    14 Aug 2012, 02:04 PM Reply Like
  • Doug Beilharz
    , contributor
    Comments (25) | Send Message
    It's tough to understand how one could discern sufficient head and leg room, road feel, connectivity, control placement, etc. based on some Tweet.
    13 Aug 2012, 03:54 PM Reply Like
  • Gumby
    , contributor
    Comments (3654) | Send Message
    If I were a dealer , I would "zip" those demo cars and let shoppers swipe their credit card for a hour of test driving with a dealer sitting with the shopper if desired. Not required. ... I like to have a feeling of driving before I buy.
    13 Aug 2012, 04:24 PM Reply Like
  • RSRinehart
    , contributor
    Comments (617) | Send Message
    I cannot imagine even considering buying a new vehicle without seeing and driving it in person. Maybe it's all the lazy Gen-Xers with their tweets and blogs. Really, it's Al Gore's fault for inventing the interweb!
    13 Aug 2012, 05:01 PM Reply Like
  • DougBP
    , contributor
    Comments (14) | Send Message
    I'm in both camps. I like to look at, check the look of available cars, their features & options as well as price range in order to narrow the field. Having done that and picked out the 3 or 3 I like, time to go to the dealership and see & try the real thing. Since I always buy domestics anyway, my field is fairly narrow to begin with.
    13 Aug 2012, 07:14 PM Reply Like
  • User 38311
    , contributor
    Comments (3) | Send Message
    We researched for a long time and decided the most likely car would be a Lexus RX 350 but we wanted to see it and drive it. Done. I told the salesman that I wanted the car to be white. The sales guy says, "I have a wonderful car in the back that you're just going to love. It's frost blue." He blew right past what I had said to him. We left immediately and bought through a fleet buying service. The car was delivered to our house and we signed the paperwork here. No haggling with a sales person. A much nicer experience.
    14 Aug 2012, 01:42 AM Reply Like
  • marilyn61
    , contributor
    Comments (173) | Send Message
    Having bought my last car from the a dealership on the internet ' unseen ' ( the reason being I was abroad when the model/color I wanted became available ), I feel that I was very fortunate in that I got a very good deal, But having said that, I'd already researched the vehicle, both on the internet and through other owners before I bought and seen the make and model parked in various places where I could take a quick peek through the windows. I did not miss having to deal with the pushy salesperson, but am not sure that I would take the chance again. I love the feel of driving my vehicle, but it could so easily have not been the case. Drive before you buy !!!
    14 Aug 2012, 03:13 AM Reply Like
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