While auto sales in China might be slowing, Alibaba and dealership group Yongda Automobiles expect demand for luxury cars to keep growing. Yongda, a leading luxury auto dealership, has partnered with Alibaba to set up a virtual shop on Tmall to sell luxury cars online. Alibaba said Wednesday that it had 80 million registered customers in a financial position to purchase a car.
Alibaba to offer zero-interest loans to buyers
The two companies will allow customers to buy luxury cars at a single price and pick it up from the nearest Yongda center. Customers can avail after-sales services at the same store where they picked it up. Yongda has over 200 outlets across China selling more than 20 luxury brands including Bentley, Jaguar Land Rover, Porsche, and Cadillac.
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Alibaba said these luxury cars will be sold at about 40% discount to the recommended retail price. The two companies have decided to kick off the partnership by offering Chevrolet Epica at prices between 60,000 and 70,000 yuan. It will be followed by more expensive models.
Alibaba’s general manager for automobile sales, Wang Licheng, said the e-commerce giant would offer zero-interest loans to buyers based on their credit history with Tmall and Taobao. It’s not the first time Alibaba is selling cars online, through. For the last few years, Tmall has partnered directly with manufacturers like General Motors, Volkswagen, and Tesla Motors to sell their vehicles online.
Luxury car sales to keep growing
Car sales in China have slowed dramatically in the past few months due to China’s stock market turmoil and President Xi Jinping’s anti-corruption campaign. But Yongda expects luxury car sales to keep growing at the double-digit rate, thanks to the growing middle-class in the country.
Earlier this week, Alibaba hired former Goldman Sachs vice-chairman Michael Evans as its president. Evans will oversee Alibaba’s international expansion to fuel growth as the Chinese market has started saturating. The e-commerce giant aims to serve at least 2 billion customers worldwide by 2020.