Toyota Captive Helps Scion Pursue One-Hour Delivery Target

© Can Stock Photo Inc. / peshkovaThe Scion brand is on the “one-hour delivery” bandwagon, and captive finance company Toyota Financial Services has a big role in working towards that goal.

Scion is Toyota’s designated “youth” brand. It is running a pilot program involving about 60 U.S. dealerships, according to Alan Mimaki, Scion business planning manager.

The captive finance company contributes to the program unveiled earlier this spring, which Scion calls, “Scion Pure Process+.” The idea is to enable consumers to do much of the transaction online before coming to the dealership, like configure vehicles, view inventory, select a dealer, pre-negotiate vehicle financing, and pre-qualify for a loan.

That last part is expected to help speed things up in the Finance & Insurance department. Mimaki responded to written questions from the Center for Auto Finance Excellence recently about the one-hour delivery target.

Center for Auto Finance Excellence: Is the one-hour deal only for “highly-qualified” buyers?

Alan Mimaki: Yes, these are for the more highly qualified leads. Pure Process+ does not come with a specific time guarantee. While customers would like to be able to purchase a car quickly — they can buy most things instantly — they understand that buying a car take a little longer. So they’d like to see it right around an hour.

In the end, the customer determines when that clock starts and when it stops. What we are trying to do is to provide a streamlined process that attempts to address customer expectations that they should be able to buy in an hour and get as close to that as possible. Pure Process+ allows the customer to move as much of the process from the dealership to their living room as they choose.

CAFE: How do you achieve this faster turnaround time? Does it entail, maybe, some sort of pre-qualification the customer can do from home, so it doesn’t “count” against the 60-minute, in-dealership experience?

AM: There is no countdown of 60 minutes in a dealership.  That said, we are working with our PP+ dealers to pilot the use of SaleMove, which may help improve the sales process and further shorten the lead time.  Our focus is on delivery time and not overall shopping time.  With Scion, there is no negotiation so we shorten that part of a transaction.  If we can shorten wait times into F&I and within F&I, we can then focus on the delivery.

CAFE: Does a deal that requires some rehashing, a co-signer, whatever, take longer?

AM: On rehashing, yes – although if this takes place prior to the dealership visit, then we should be able to stay within a two-hour delivery. The co-signer would get factored into the pre-approval.

CAFE: Is it implicit that in the “one-hour” goal, do TFS deals go faster? Is the offer not valid for other lenders?

AM: Yes and no. Again, we can’t say TFS deals go faster, nor can we say we’re delivering one-hour. We do have a mechanism with TFS-only, to get a qualified customer pre-approved within 60 seconds. In general, all customers who submit a credit application get routed to the dealer as a lead for follow-up. The fact that they have started the process online saves the dealer and the customer time to be able to complete a deal.

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