When Janet Martin-Clark received an unsolicited email from Carvana last August about joining the company's online vehicle marketplace, she wanted to know more.
Not because she intended to sign up. Far from it, she said. But Martin-Clark was curious about why the online used-vehicle retailer was seeking her business.
"I can't imagine what dealer would agree to that because we can sell our vehicles just like they can online," said Martin-Clark, president of Martin Chevrolet-Buick-GMC in Cleveland, Texas.
She declined to participate in Carvana's marketplace.
"I sell a ton of stuff without a person ever coming into my store," she told Automotive News. "It's not any different."
Carvana is experimenting with a vehicle marketplace in which it lists inventory from third-party sources on its website alongside its own certified vehicles. The company has offered few public details about how the program operates, including who its partners are and how the economics work for both Carvana and the third parties. Carvana representatives declined to discuss the program for this report.