Thursday, February 8, 2007

Web 2.0 & Cars

As an auto enthusiast I read up on the latest new cars and reviews quite often. Here are some of the websites I visit that fall more into the web 1.0 side of things:
VW Vortex (Discussion forums)
The Car Lounge (Discussion forums)
Edmunds - Inside Line (Reviews & Blogs from editors)
Left Lane News (Latest news in blog format)

I haven't been able to find many web 2.0 type sites focused on the automotive industry, perhaps making it prime for some new entrants. I did find this one site that does provide increased interconnectivity among existing services and technologies, but I feel that it's not yet executed to its full potential.


What makes it web 2.0? It is independent of any dealer networks yet has the ability to search for used cars across the nation. The Used Car section encourages user input and reviews of how dealers treated customers. Google maps is incorporated to locate the car and visitors can read reviews of that particular make and model. The videos section is linked to youtube and it allows you to utilize drop down menus to find videos specific to a make or model (functionality not offered on YouTube in their Automobile section - it's a pain to sift through rubbish home videos of burnouts, etc. when all you may want to do is find video reviews while shopping for a new car). Overall the site provides a simple one stop portal but it seems like it has not caught on enough - not many user generated dealer reviews and a limited database of used cars. If anyone knows of other web 2.0 auto sites - please let me know!

1 comment: said...

First of all thanks for your hones review.
Your observation are very correct. We have made several strives forward since your review in February.
Our used car listing inventory is now closer to 500,000 as compared to 100,000 at the beginning of the year. We added several lesser obvious enhancements to existing features like the AJAX powered Used Car Photo Lot.

The lack of Web 2.0 sites in automotive space is very obvious and over time we have learned that Car Dealers are still stuck in 1997 and many of them do not understand what technology and the Internet can offer.

Getting a community to contribute has proven to be just as difficult. Perhaps we are going about it in all the wrong ways….

It is an uphill battle every day for us, we are a true start up and the entire team has a credit card bill to prove it.

We would like to hear your ideas...any feedback would be greatly appreciated.