AA ditches new car sales and launches car advice service

The AA is to stop selling new cars and is instead launching a car-buying service next month, supported by a &£3m advertising campaign. The initiative is intended to drive consumers to the AA’s car loan business, which is an important revenue source.

The AA has decided to guide consumers through a car selection process, rather than sell new or used cars. Its redesigned website will provide information such as reliability data drawn from its own warranty sales, as well as road tests sourced by the Press Association.

The move is designed to integrate the AA’s disparate portfolio of car-related services, which includes vehicle inspection, insurance, breakdown cover and verification of vehicle history.

The AA has piloted selling both new and used cars, but found that consumers wanted either to buy on price or see cars before they bought them. The AA will refer consumers wanting to buy a new car to Halifax Bank of Scotland, its partner in the car loan business.

AA head of marketing for car-buying services Chris Dobson is overseeing the project. Rapier is responsible for advertising, including television, except for a viral campaign that will be created by LIDA.

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