Ford’s Online Venture Goes National; GM’s Hits the Scrap-heap

21 December 2001

Ford Motor Company revealed Thursday that the rollout of its FordDirect internet joint venture with dealers is complete in all fifty states.

The scheme allows customers to purchase via the web directly from Ford dealers – some 2,500 of which are taking part across the US.

“FordDirect is unique in the industry,” hyped the auto giant’s chief operating officer David Kain. “The customer is in control of the entire process, but the local dealer is there not only for the sale but for the all-important service after the sales transaction has long been completed.”

The scheme’s success contrasts with Wednesday’s announcement by General Motors that it is scrapping its $50 million AutoCentric internet operation, in which 7,800 dealers were to take part. GM said the business model was not viable.

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