Volkswagen has signed an agreement with its distributors. The latter will no longer have the right to sell its electric vehicles, gathered in the ID range. Their new role: sales advisers. The marketing will be done only online, on the Volkswagen site. A model reminiscent of Tesla's.
At the start of the year, we relayed information regarding Tesla's market valuation. The young American car brand of Elon Musk has managed in a few years to overtake several veterans of the sector: General Motors, Fiat, Ford, Renault and PSA together are then worth less money than Tesla. In 2019, the firm placed three of its models in the world's top 20 best-selling electric cars, including the Model 3 in first position.
One of Tesla's strengths is its business model, inspired in part by telephony: the brand sells its cars online, live. Without going through dealers, therefore. In 2019, she even decided to remove much of its own physical store network, which served as a showroom and point of sale. It is no longer worth it, it seems.
Direct sales for electric vehicles
This model seems to have given Volkswagen some ideas. In a press release, the German group reveals that all electric car sales will now go live through its website. It will start with ID.3, which is slated to launch in Europe in June. This was already the case for large companies, which do not go through a dealership to order their vehicles. The model will therefore now concern individuals and small businesses.
What future for dealers? Initially, they will continue to sell models with thermal or hybrid engines. However, the commitment of European manufacturers to an abandonment of thermal engines by 2030 will considerably reduce the commercial role of concessions.
Volkswagen wants to be reassuring, however. These points of contact with customers will remain important. They will be responsible for prospecting with their showroom, of the test management, but also from customer service and after sales service, Not to mention all the maintenance services that ID owners will need. They will also receive a commission on the sales they have generated. However, they will no longer have room for negotiation. Which means customers either.