In most countries, buying a car can be tedious with all the negotiating and paperwork involved, but in China, especially now, buying your first – or second – vehicle can be as easy as a flick on your smartphone screen.
Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., in partnership with American automaker Ford, has finally unveiled the unmanned five-storey car vending machine in Guangzhou in southern China’s Guangdong province, according to South China Morning Post.
This vending machine for cars contains 42 different models that includes the Ford Explorer SUV and Mustang. Prospective buyers will also be able to see and test drive these cars.
As for how it’s all done, the prospective consumer would need to have Taobao or the Tmall mobile app installed in their smartphone. They would then need to have their face scanned, and upon arrival at the vending machine, their identity must first be verified before the car gets delivered.
The process will only take under 10 minutes and without any human help, as said in the report.
“Sign up is completely mobile on the Tmall or Taobao mobile APP,” general manager of vehicles at Tmall Auto, Gu Wanguo, said. “Once a Ford vehicle is chosen, consumers snap a selfie to ensure they are only person who can take the car, put down a deposit electronically, and schedule a pickup time, all from within the app.”
This specific vending machine in Guangzhou will reportedly serve consumers starting Monday up to April 23. The companies involved are also planning to launch similar machines in Beijing and Huangzhou, but did not specifically mention when it will come out or become operational.
Image screenshot via YouTube / DPCars