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Hyundai Shakes Up Retail Car Buying with Shopper Assurance

In an effort to spark sales and appeal to younger, more online-savvy consumers, today Hyundai rolled out a Shopper Assurance program in Miami and Orlando, Florida as well as Dallas and Houston, Texas. In a press release accompanying the announcement, the Korean carmaker said its Shopper Assurance is in response to the majority of car buyers being frustrated with the automotive retail experience. The idea is to modernize and streamline the car-buying process.

"Hyundai is struggling, largely because it is so dependent on cars in a market that wants SUVs and trucks," commented Cox Automotive Senior Analyst Michele Krebs. "Yes, it has utilities, but they are not dominant in their segments. As a result, Hyundai has resorted to very heavy incentives — among the highest in the business — and it is putting a lot of vehicles in rental-car fleets to move the metal. This effort may provide Hyundai with a marketing story to tell."

Shopper Assurance targets four elements of the car-buying experience that have historically added to consumer angst and significantly slowed the process. At the top of the list is Transparent Pricing. Participating dealers will post what Hyundai calls the fair market price of each vehicle on the dealer website. This is the manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) minus incentives and dealer discounts. This will cut down on or possibly even eliminate the time spent on negotiations.

Second is the Flexible Test Drive. At their convenience, consumers can set up a test drive through the dealer’s website, over the phone or through the Hyundai Drive app. Test drives can be at a time and place of the consumer’s choosing.

Third is Streamlined Purchase, reducing the amount of time a consumer spends at the dealership filling out paperwork. It allows consumers to fill out most of the paperwork online before visiting the dealership. This includes applying for financing, obtaining credit approvals, calculating payments and valuing trade-ins.

Finally, the 3-Day Money Back Guarantee provides the customer with three days in which to return the vehicle for a full refund. To qualify, the vehicle must pass a dealer inspection and have fewer than 300 miles logged since purchase.

Scheduled to be live all across the country in early 2018, Shopper Assurance will be available for every new model in the Hyundai lineup.

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Russ Heaps
Russ Heaps is an author specializing in automotive, financial and travel news. For nearly 35 years he has covered the automotive industry for newspapers, magazines and internet websites. His resume includes The Palm Beach Post, Miami Herald, The Washington Times and numerous other daily newspapers through syndication. He edited Auto World magazine, and helped create and edit NOPI Street... Read More about Russ Heaps

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