There’s no reversing the trend toward price transparency in online auto retailing, but most of the industry is still dragging its feet, according to Langley Steinert, Founder and CEO of online new- and used-car marketplace CarGurus.
“With all due respect to our competitors, I feel like there’s a real lack of transparency even today, helping consumers make probably the second-most expensive purchase of their life,” he says during a recent presentation here at CarGurus’ conference, Navigate 2019.
Steinert says other auto-shopping websites have “no concept of transparency; whether it’s a good deal or a bad deal; the dealer reputation; how many price drops (the car has) had; how long it’s been on the lot; whether the car has been in an accident. None of that.”
CarGurus’ claim to fame is that it routinely provides all those pieces of information, rates its listings as good or bad deals for the consumer compared with what others are paying and factors in dealer reputation, Steinert says.
“We were very unpopular” among dealers as a result, he says. Over the years “a lot” of dealerships and some big dealer groups pulled their inventories off CarGurus, Steinert says, but most have come back “because we have scale.”
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