How Buying A Car Has Changed Over Time

Woman driving a car

The clever bods at the motor industry have overcome many of technology’s slowest hurdles. In the age of instant gratification and online showrooms, there is very little space left for hanging around at the dealership. What’s more, even waiting for a test drive are all things of the past.

A decade ago rifling through car magazines, newspapers and used car pamphlets was your go-to to find your next vehicle. Now, as the digital age continues to evolve, purchasing a car is only a few clicks away. Likewise, on reflection, the process of buying a vehicle has changed significantly over time.

So, let’s journey together and see how the industry has changed over the years:

Goodbye high pressured sales

Back in the day, you would be hard-pressed not to be bombarded with a balding man screaming at you from your TV straight into your living room. “OFFERS,” “DISCOUNTS” and “ONE OF A KIND DEALS,” are all snippets from the industry’s loud selling past.

Now you are greeted with slicker, shinier presentations, where a type of lifestyle tends to be the focus. Epic landscapes interlaced with playful storytelling, and dare I say it, trendy appeal. Advertising has changed, and with it, so has the narrative. Marketing has become more innovative and leans on demographic-led research to make its point drive home.

Happy customers tend to come back for more. It’s a simple fact—Genius when you really think about it. High-pressured sales had their time, but fortunately, they belong way back in the past where they belong.

The evolved salesperson

Bully tactics and deadline pricing have been kicked to the curb. Due to the digital age advancements, the consumer has more tools at their disposal than ever before. You can look up vehicle specification, look into engine sizes and performance and even check out the trim – all with a few clicks.

What’s more, you can use a plethora of vehicle comparison websites to find you the best deal out there. From finding out the ins and outs of make and model to getting your head around fuel economy, it’s all there.

Information is power.

Salespeople are more like vehicle consultants these days, guiding customers rather than driving sales. In short, the ballpark has very much changed. Authenticity and respect are all that is left for a dealership to make their money these days. Especially, as you are more likely to be armed with a megatonne of information before you even start the conversation!

Researching prowess

Remember the days of checking out the used cars section in your local rag, or buying your favourite motor magazine to find what the experts really thought of the next best thing? For many of us, it might have been waiting for your favourite, tongue-in-cheek motoring show to air on BBC2!

Today, everything you could possibly need is online. From having a virtual tour to locating a sought out classic car, you can have all the information you need within minutes. It’s not just finding the right vehicle either! You can access all the best insurance offers, discover grants and schemes and tap into the best financing options out there.

Back in the day, showroom and dealership antics were incredibly time-consuming. Not only did you need to haggle for all your worth, wait an age for a test drive and wait weeks for an appointment, applying for finance took forever. Today, you can have a quote within minutes and be behind the wheel of your next set of wheels in the same breath!

On financing

Once a massive hurdle to securing your new vehicle, financing didn’t used to be a simple affair. Back in the day, you would have to walk into your bank or credit union, fill out a tree’s worth of paperwork in the hope that your loan might be fulfilled. After weeks of waiting, you may have been greeted by a big fat no from the bank and left without a car as a result.

Fast forward to today, and the whole financing process is exclusively online. All the best rates available are a few clicks away and don’t damage your credit score when in the quote stage.

Even car financing for bad credit is widely accepted more than ever before. As with most things, the finance industry has finally caught up to the need to offer more options for credit scores to improve. No longer do you have to wait weeks for a possible no to arrive in the post. Instead, you can get all the answers and approval you need within minutes.

Times are a-changing – and buying a car has never been a more enjoyable experience. Gone are the days of waiting. Waiting for a test drive, waiting for finance and waiting to drive away in your dream car. The time to buy is now!