Vehicle production plants opened back up months ago, after shutdowns due to COVID-19. Additionally, as of this month, demand for new vehicles has skyrocketed. But despite all this, there are still new-vehicle inventory shortages across the board, which has led to ripple effects throughout the auto-industry supply chain. While plants had recently opened back up and were working to meet the increasing consumer demand for new vehicles, a recent worldwide shortage of vehicle parts, including semiconductor chips, has put another roadblock in place and further extended out the lack of new-vehicle inventory on the market. These chips are a critical part of modern cars, as they allow for battery management, in-car entertainment, driver-assistance systems and more – meaning, cars can’t be completed and considered ready-to-sell unless the chips are installed.
Without the semiconductor chips, many automakers like General Motors and Ford are now halting production at some of their North American factories and waiting for more parts to come in from abroad. Retailers, working to meet the high customer demand for vehicles , are coming up with new and creative ways to acquire quality vehicle inventory, including purchasing used cars from customers themselves.
Whether it comes down to acquiring inventory from customers, hauling and then storing inventory for or a different transport need entirely, vehicle-logistics providers like ACERTUS have the teams, infrastructure and service offerings to help.
Vehicle Acquisition: Transporting Inventory Where Needed
As little to new ready-to-sell inventory comes in due to several automotive parts shortages, and rental-car companies and auction houses have slim options available for selling, retailers have been forced to get innovative and acquire quality used-vehicle inventory in unique ways.
One of the most crucial vehicle-acquisition methods retailers use now – that of buying vehicles directly from the consumer with no trade-in – became especially popular during the throws of the COVID-19 pandemic last year, when production plants were largely shut down. This has continued well into 2021, as the global semiconductor chip shortage has extended the lack of new vehicle inventory.
As dealers, online retailers and others look to acquire more used vehicles from consumers and move that inventory quickly and efficiently to the intended drop-off sites – whether that’s a retailer’s actual lot, another dealer’s site, a reconditioning facility or anywhere else – they want solutions to help them make this happen. If a retailer doesn’t want to use up valuable time by sending its own employees to fetch these vehicles and transport them to their respective drop-off sites, or it just wants help in successfully executing transportation logistics, the retailer can consider outsourcing these services to a vehicle-logistics provider.
ACERTUS’ car-haul team includes 6,600 well-trained and carefully vetted carriers, which means it can make both short– and long–distance vehicle transports throughout the US, Puerto Rico and Canada. Depending on the type of vehicles being moved, the length of the journey and the retailer’s preference, car hauls can be performed via standard open trailer, through an expedited vehicle-shipping method or on an enclosed critical carrier for added vehicle care and protection.
Beyond Acquisition: Home-Delivery Options
While these car-haul services can be employed for vehicle acquisition, they can most certainly be utilized for vehicle home deliveries, as well. Once a customer has purchased a vehicle from the retailer, if he or she chooses to have that car dropped off at a home, workplace or another location, the retailer can arrange to have the vehicle dropped off – relying upon a logistics provider like ACERTUS to do this transporting, if there’s a partnership in place.
Many providers, including ACERTUS, also offer drive-away services, which customers to have a personalized vehicle-delivery experience. If drive-away services are employed, a customer receives the vehicle from one well-trained, professional driver at their designated location and then they have a thorough walkthrough of the vehicle and its features. This type of drive-away delivery is especially ideal for remote test drives or trade-ins, or if a customer wants to be able to ask questions and assess the vehicle. ACERTUS’ driver network more than 1,000 highly trained drivers and features the ability to offer a personalized white-glove experience. Drive-away services mean drivers can easily get around more difficult-to-navigate areas that could be challenging for a larger truck, such as areas with narrow streets, with low-hanging trees or a more urban environment.
ACERTUS as Your Logistics Partner
Despite the many challenges facing vehicle retailers right now, including the worldwide chip shortage, ACERTUS is committed to delivering the transport and vehicle-logistics services its customers need to help them be successful.
Tech-driven and focused on increasing efficiencies, ACERTUS streamlines its customers’ work through its own proprietary software, granting customers full transparency and access to their vehicle inventory at any given point in the process. Companies it partners with have full visibility into their assets and can use the regularly updated data they receive to determine what next steps to take.
With services extending far beyond vehicle transport, ACERTUS offers complete solutions throughout the lifecycle of a vehicle, including storage, care and maintenance, title and registration and compliance services.
Want to gain more insights into challenges impacting the automotive industry right now? Download our State of the Industry Report here.