USA: AutoNation group dominates e-dealer ranking

By just-auto.com editorial team | 12 April 2001

For the first time, the number of transactions of new and used vehicle sales initiated and completed by the top 100 dealerships via the Internet - some 61,356 units - have been quantified in a ranking of the top 100 eDealers by the magazine Ward's Dealer Business.

AutoNation dominates the list with 51 of the stores ranked.

As a group, AutoNation stores, on and off the Top 100 list, sold about 63,000 vehicles online in 2000.

The top spot, however, goes to California's Anderson Honda of Palo Alto, a former AutoNation store, where some four percent of customers never set foot in the dealership.

Nearly half of Anderson's revenues in 2000 came from online sales of new vehicles: 2,346 units representing more than $45 million.

Second on the list is Dave Smith Motors of Kellogg, Idaho, which sold 2,252 new and used vehicles, many to buyers who flew in from out of state.

While California easily outperformed other states in the number of dealerships on the top 100 list -26 in all - eastern dealerships also fared well.

Classic Auto of Turnersville, New Jersey, ranked third with 1,598 new and used e-sales, while Conicelli Autoplax, of Conshohocken, Pennsylvania, transacted 1,513 new and used car deals.

The leading AutoNation dealership was No. 5 Maroone Ford of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, with 1,084 new and used unit sales.

"Clearly, these dealers get it," said Ward's Dealer Business publisher Richard West.

"The Web can be a huge revenue source when dealerships put up effective sites and dedicate and train staff. Our Top 100 eDealer list shows who's playing the game hard and how much they are succeeding.

"Just as it is conventionally, winning at e-business is not about getting leads, it's what a dealer does with them that determines the sale," West added.

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