GRAND RAPIDS, Michigan — The all-new 2016 Scion iA sedan and Scion iM hatchback will arrive at Scion dealerships in September with the help of a new program designed to make the buying-and-leasing process easier for car shoppers.
Sixty Scion dealers in 18 states are participating in a pilot program called Pure Process Plus. The program is expected to debut in most of the country in the first half of 2016. All Scion models are included.
Pure Process Plus is basically a Web portal that enables car shoppers to bring as much of the purchase process as they choose into their living room.
"They can build the vehicle online," said Doug Murtha, group vice president of Toyota?s Scion division at a media event here on Thursday. "They can search for it at local dealers. They can apply for and secure financing. They can contact the dealer and agree to a price, and, where it is legal, they can even sign for it online and take delivery at home.?
Murtha said the level of satisfaction in the sales process is significantly higher for those buyers who participated in Pure Process Plus compared to those who experienced the traditional purchase process. That process averages four hours or longer depending on the model, a time frame that is typical for the entire auto industry.
"What we saw from the results is that about 50 percent of purchases took under two hours," he said. "That is a step in the right direction.?
Car shoppers told Scion they would like to see the process whittled down to about an hour.
"That is what we are shooting for," Murtha said.
Buyers tell Scion that they still want to visit showrooms and take Scion vehicles for test-drives. But they want the sales transaction process streamlined.
Interested shoppers should go to the Scion Pure Process Plus Web site to determine which dealers offer the program. Dealers in several Southeastern states will not be participating.
Shoppers then select the Scion model, color and accessories and click "Build Your Scion.?
All online credit applications are reviewed by Toyota Financial Services. If the company pre-approves the loan, the next step is to notify the dealer.
Murtha said Pure Process Plus is being considered for the Toyota brand, but not until the program is running smoothly at Scion. No timetable was given for a Toyota launch.
Edmunds says: Scion Pure Process Plus has the potential to be a massive game changer in the car-buying business, especially if it makes the jump to Toyota.