For years, organizations have reported inconsistencies in the dealership EV buying experience. Prospective EV Buyers still find that most automotive salespeople know relatively little about EVs and that dealerships remain disinterested in promoting them.
The Sierra Club’s 2019 REV Up report found some stark realities:
74% of auto dealership nationwide are not selling EVs
Of the dealerships that sold EVs, more than 66% did not display EVs prominently, with vehicles sometimes buried in the back of the lot
Only about 50% of salespeople had access to information about how to fuel these vehicles
About 33% of salespeople did not understand/discuss federal or state tax credits or rebates that can lower vehicle costs
One of the biggest challenges for the sales of EVs is the lack of knowledge about electric vehicles among dealership sales staff, as well as the relatively low motivation for sales staff to educate themselves about EVs and actually “close the sale.” Forth is excited to announce its role in alleviating these disparities with the launch of the EV-Drive Dealership Certification Program. Utilizing a mixed strategy of dealership education, sales staff and customer incentives, and promotion and outreach, the goal of the program is to get more drivers and dealers to embrace the many advantages of electric cars.
Forth’s objective is to leverage its EV consumer engagement experiences garnered through the Forth Electric Showcase to provide complementary details on electric vehicle technology, charging, rebates, and incentives (including utility programs and the Oregon Clean Vehicle Rebate Program) and provide resources for frequently asked customer questions. The EV education component is being paired with financial incentives for both customers and dealerships. Customers can enter to win a cash prize by taking a test drive and dealerships and sales staff will receive cash bonuses for new or used electric vehicles sold (or leased).
Forth is piloting this program in Lane County Oregon in collaboration with two local utilities, Eugene Water and Electric Board (EWEB) and Emerald People’s Utility District (EPUD). Forth has certified its first two dealers, Kendall Chevrolet and Sheppard Hyundai, and will be adding more in the weeks to come.
EWEB and EPUD customers visiting EV-Drive Certified Dealers will find:
Trained EV sales representatives that understand EVs, charging, cost savings, environmental benefits, financial incentives, and more
Multiple EVs in stock at the dealership
Opportunities to win a $250 cash prize for taking a test drive in an electric car or plug-in hybrid vehicle
A $100 cash bonus for registering your purchased or leased EV with your utility
Phase one of the program launched October 1 and is scheduled to run through January 31, Forth, and our partners will evaluate and iterate the program based upon initial results and feedback.
Interested in learning or more running your own dealer engagement program? Contact Connor Herman at firstname.lastname@example.org