The National Automotive Finance Association is working with dealers and lenders to help them address credit and sales issues specific to Hispanic vehicle buyers.
At an association workshop last month, Brian Perry, general manager of Carriage Nissan in Gainesville, Ga., said Hispanic consumers place particular value on references from friends and family.
Earning the trust of Hispanic customers is also important, Perry said. A salesperson usually must spend at least an hour in initial conversation to do so, he said.
Adds Jack Tracey, the association's executive director: "If you win over the Hispanic person, it's likely other relatives or close friends will follow."
Dealerships should hire employees whose native language is Spanish to work with Hispanic customers who aren't fluent in English, Perry recommended.
Some Hispanic buyers use a relative's Social Security number when they apply for vehicle financing, Perry said. Such behavior, he told Automotive News, "is not so much a sinister or criminal element. They just will come in with other people's identity, not fully understanding the implications of that."
To build Hispanic business, the workshop urged dealers to:
Says Tracey: "The Hispanic market is becoming such an important aspect of the nonprime lending world."
You may e-mail Gail Kachadourian at [email protected]