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Amazon announces online car sales for the first time, starting with Hyundai

Starting next year, you’ll be able to buy a car on Amazon for the first time. The company announced a deal with Hyundai that will allow dealerships to sell cars through the site.

Previously, customers could browse car showrooms and compare prices on Amazon but not actually buy a car. That will change next year when several Hyundai dealers start to list models for sale on the site.

Customers can browse cars on the site and make a purchase using their preferred payment methods. They can then choose to pick the car up at a nearby dealership or have it delivered to their home at their convenience.

Importantly, the final seller is still the dealer

Importantly, the end seller of the vehicle is still the dealer; Amazon’s platform will be the middleman between the customer and the dealership. It’s unclear whether the company is talking to other automakers about listing their vehicles on the site.

“This new shopping experience will create another way for dealers to build awareness of their selection and offer convenience to their customers,” Amazon said in a blog post.

Amazon has been slowly moving into the car space, offering virtual showrooms for certain brands and price comparison tools. You can also buy certain car parts and accessories through the site.

As part of the deal, Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant will be available in Hyundai vehicles starting in 2025. And Hyundai will use AWS for cloud services.

People typically hate car shopping, with most surveys showing that the dealership experience tops people’s list of frustrations. Tesla has helped spearhead a direct-to-consumer (DTC) process in which people buy their vehicles directly through the company’s website.

Forty-eight states have laws that limit or ban manufacturers from selling vehicles directly to consumers — although that has started to shift recently thanks to Tesla’s popularity. Tesla has no independent dealerships, but dealership associations in multiple states have filed numerous lawsuits against Tesla to prevent the company from selling cars.

Amazon’s deal with Hyundai neatly sidesteps this issue by ensuring that dealers remain a crucial part of the process. Most dealers allow customers to browse and buy a car through their own websites, but having Amazon as an additional platform with millions of daily customers is sure to help make the process even easier.