Online sales tool TrueCar+ is heading to more markets this year, says CEO Mike Darrow
TrueCar CEO Mike Darrow said the company hopes to expand its TrueCar+ digital sales tool to other markets by the third quarter, with used vehicles likely growing faster than new vehicles.
darrow said Automotive News Friday that the goal is to have used vehicles available nationwide through TrueCar+ in early 2023 and new vehicles available in three to four other markets outside of Florida along the East Coast of by the end of this year.
And TrueCar’s acquisition this month of digital retail provider Digital Motors has already produced new functionality for TrueCar’s own online retail platform.
The integration of Digital Motors’ technology comes as TrueCar, of Santa Monica, Calif., aims to expand the reach of its TrueCar+ tool, which allows consumers to choose a vehicle, set up financing, add protection products, arrange delivery and complete a transaction. all primarily within the TrueCar platform. It began as a pilot project in Tampa, Florida in September and expanded to other markets in that state for a public launch in March.
Darrow said Digital Motors’ technology helps power a menu of vehicle protection products that consumers can select from TrueCar+.
“We’ve already got them on board. They’re very nimble,” Darrow said after a presentation at the Automotive Press Association in Detroit. “We think they’re going to be a good asset to us. And they’ve done or worked on a lot of the things that we’re working to bring to market, so we think they can definitely accelerate us to get there.”
Digital Motors, founded by Andy Hinrichs, went live in March 2020 at the start of the pandemic, months ahead of schedule. Darrow said in May that TrueCar was considering acquisitions that could provide “smart, integrated opportunities” that could advance TrueCar’s own technology platform.
“We think they’re going to speed us years to get things out,” Darrow said. “And it gives us an additional development team. It gives us some experience in areas that we didn’t have.”
TrueCar aims to be a vehicle ad marketplace that connects vehicle buyers and sellers, Darrow told the Automotive Press Association. Auto retail is changing, he said, with new entrants bringing new models of online sales – from start-up electric vehicle makers to digital used-vehicle retailers such as Carvana and vroom.
Automakers, too, are expanding into space. But Darrow said he believes marketplace sales platforms such as TrueCar+ have a role to play alongside other models, including enabling consumers to cross-shop.
“We can help consumers figure out which brand they’re interested in, and if that brand has an ordering system that they want us to pass on, we can do that as well,” he said.