Swedish brand will bring cars to customers' doors for 45-minute test drives

Volvo has continued its push to offer alternative means into car ownership by launching the UK's first test drive service through Amazon’s Prime Now.

For some weekends during June and July, customers in four major UK cities — London (9-10 June), Birmingham (16-17 June), Manchester (23-24 June) and Edinburgh (30 June-1 July) — will be able to test drive a V40 booked through Amazon’s online delivery service.

Bookings are being taken from today, with a limited number of slots available. Customers who reserve one will have a car driven to their address by a Volvo employee, before being offered a 45-minute test drive on local roads. If the customer is then interested in purchasing a V40, they can continue the process at a Volvo dealership.

Volvo UK boss Jon Wakefield said of the new service: “At Volvo, we aim to make people’s lives easier. Our Prime Now test drive offer does just that, allowing potential customers to try our V40 on their terms and in familiar surroundings.

“We’re proud to team up with Amazon to deliver this unique initiative — the first of its kind in the UK and the latest in a range of offerings from Volvo designed to take the hassle out of running a car.”

A company spokesman told Autocar that the service is only confirmed for the aforementioned dates and there are no plans to extend it. However, the spokesman added that if this stint is a success, it could be adopted for other models in the Volvo range.

Volvo launched the Care by Volvo subscription service earlier this year that turns the full ownership package of a car into monthly payments with no upfront cost.

Its new electric performance division, Polestar, will offer its cars, such as the 1, exclusively through a subscription service like Care by Volvo. The system trades a traditional dealer-focused method of selling cars for a model more closely aligned to those used by Netflix, Spotify and city centre rental bikes.

Volvo and Polestar are not the only brands to experiment with ways to reach new customers. Ford and Chinese online commerce giant Alibaba introduced a car vending machine in China that allows users to access cars in an unmanned and robotised tower — built like a giant vending machine — that they can test drive and even buy.  

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Comments
6

23 May 2018

 I admire Volvo for trying this, whether it gets more sales is another matter, I just feel that like mobile phone use and cold calling that we won’t get away from being offer d a great deal even when we don’t want or indeed need a new Car....

Peter Cavellini.

23 May 2018

to offer this, on what effectively is a run out model, due to be replaced in about 12 months. 

23 May 2018
autocar wrote:

...will be able to test drive a V40 estate booked through Amazon’s online delivery service.

I hope the Amazon Prime service allows free return postage because Volvo stopped making the V40 estate in 2004.

23 May 2018

...you could phone a dealer and book a test drive on this outdated model.

But, by a driver turning up at your house it does apply presure on you, expect to see it on rogue traders sometime soon

typos1 - Just can’t respect opinion

23 May 2018

The staff members are NOT all salesmen and they have been told not to push a sale, but to answer all the questions that the customer has, and if, and only IF the customer wants to pursue the offer, they will then be invited to attend the dealership at a time of their chosing - THERE IS NO HARD SELL AT ALL - so Rogue traders will not be called, at all ever - unless of course it is you just stirring the pot.

 

23 May 2018

It was a joke. "staff members are NOT all salesmen " does that mean some are?

A far better test drive is to do what I did, ask for a 24 hr one mid-week and if they think you're serious you're get one, especially if they seller thinks it's a great car and he'll get a positive response.

Worked in my case as I did 150 miles and ended up buying a new one!

p.s. it wasn't a LEAF who are/were doing 24 test drive, far better than Amazon prime (whatever that is?) 

typos1 - Just can’t respect opinion

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