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Revolutionizing Car Buying: A Look at Online Dealerships and Retail Platforms

Have you ever wished that you could purchase a car without stepping foot into a dealership? Thanks to online car dealerships like Vroom and Carvana, buying a car has never been easier.

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at Vroom, one of the leading online car dealerships. We’ll cover their history, services, successes, and setbacks.

Vroom Overview

Vroom is a car dealership that specializes in purchasing and selling vehicles online. This unique approach has made car buying and selling a breeze for buyers and sellers alike.

Founded in 2013 by Kevin Westfall, Marshall Chesrown, and Scott Chesrown, Vroom has grown exponentially over the years. Headquartered in New York City, Vroom offers an easy and hassle-free process to purchase a car without having to step into a dealership.

Skip the Dealership Visits

One of the most alluring aspects of buying and selling cars through Vroom is the ability to skip the dealership visits. Buyers can pick out their car online, and Vroom will deliver it right to their doorstep.

Similarly, sellers can have their cars evaluated online and schedule a home pickup. This avoids the need for haggling with dealerships and saves precious time.

Sell with Ease

Selling your car with Vroom is just as easy as buying one. Vroom’s instant price offer provides sellers with a fair and accurate value for their vehicles, and they can schedule a pickup at their convenience.

Vroom’s extensive inspection process and overhaul procedure also ensure that customers receive a top-quality vehicle when purchasing through the website.

90-Day Limited Warranty and One-Year Roadside Assistance

To give customers peace of mind after their purchase, Vroom offers a 90-day limited warranty and one-year roadside assistance. This ensures that customers can enjoy their new car without worrying about any unexpected issues.

These added benefits are a testament to Vroom’s commitment to customer satisfaction.


Like any growing business, Vroom has experienced a few setbacks. In 2020, Vroom laid off over 600 workers due to a drop in demand during the early stages of the pandemic.

Additionally, in 2021, Vroom closed one of its large Texas dealerships due to inspection-related discrepancies. These setbacks have brought attention to the importance of the inspection process and the need for continued improvement.


Despite the setbacks, Vroom has quickly become one of the largest car dealerships in the US. As of 2021, they have sold over 2.2 million cars and employ over 2,000 people.

Their online approach to car buying and selling has proven to be a game-changer, and their revenue continues to grow year after year. Competitor 1: Carvana

Another online car dealership that has become a household name is Carvana.

Carvana is known for its unique car vending machines that dispense cars like candy. Founded in 2013 and spun out of DriveTime, Carvana has quickly become a major player in the online car dealership industry.

In 2021 alone, they sold over 425,000 cars and generated $12.8 billion in revenue. They went public in 2017 and have raised significant funding over the years.

They currently employ over 7,000 people.


In conclusion, Vroom’s unique approach to car buying and selling has revolutionized the industry. With the ability to skip dealership visits, sell cars with ease, and enjoy added benefits like a limited warranty and roadside assistance, it’s no wonder that Vroom’s revenue continues to grow year after year.

While they have experienced setbacks along the way, their commitment to customer satisfaction and excellence remains steadfast. As we continue to see the shift towards online car purchases, Vroom’s success story will surely inspire countless others to follow in their footsteps.

Competitor 2: CarMax

If you’re looking for a reliable and diverse selection of used cars, you might want to check out CarMax. Founded by former employees of Circuit City, CarMax offers a unique approach to car selling with fixed pricing and an extensive inventory of used vehicles.

Let’s take a closer look at this popular car retailer.

Fixed Pricing

One of the most significant advantages of buying from CarMax is its fixed pricing model. This means that buyers can rest assured that the cars they purchase are being sold at a fair price.

CarMax has an extensive team of skilled mechanics and automotive experts to determine the right price for each of its used cars. This transparency provides customers with the confidence that they are getting the best value for their money.

Extensive Inventory

CarMax claims to have the largest inventory of used cars in the nation. With over 200 locations scattered across the United States, CarMax provides a diverse selection of used vehicles, which are also backed by CarMax’s vehicle history report.

This report provides a detailed overview of the car’s maintenance history, any accidents or repairs, and other relevant information that may affect the vehicle’s value. Customers can also take advantage of CarMax’s online inventory search engine to browse and compare cars conveniently.

Ownership and Reach

CarMax was created by former employees of Circuit City in 1993 and was spun off from the company in 2002. Today, it operates over 235 stores nationwide, making it a popular choice for used car buyers.

As of 2021, CarMax generated $31.9 billion in revenue and sold over 343,000 cars, making it one of the largest used car dealers in the US. Competitor 3: AutoNation

If you’re in the market for a new or used car and require maintenance and repair services, AutoNation could be the place for you.

As one of the largest automotive retailers with physical dealerships and service offerings, AutoNation is a popular choice for those looking for a comprehensive car buying and ownership experience.

History and Acquisition

AutoNation was founded by entrepreneur Wayne Huizenga in 1996. In its early years, AutoNation was primarily involved in the rental car business and acquired National Car Rental.

Today, AutoNation has expanded into a leading automotive retail organization with over 300 locations nationwide. As of 2021, the company generated $25.8 billion in revenue and employs over 30,000 people.

Physical Dealerships and Service Offerings

One of AutoNation’s greatest strengths is its physical dealerships and service offerings. AutoNation’s extensive network of dealerships provides customers with an opportunity to interact with sales representatives and test drive the vehicles before making a purchase.

These dealerships also offer maintenance, repair, and car service options, making AutoNation a one-stop-shop for all your automotive needs.

Vehicle Service Contracts

AutoNation offers a host of vehicle service contracts to protect customers’ investments. These contracts cover the cost of repairs, replacements, and maintenance services for your vehicle, depending on the type of package selected.

These service contracts provide customers with the peace of mind that their investment will be protected against costly repairs and unexpected breakdowns.


From online retailers to physical dealerships, the car buying and ownership landscape has evolved significantly in recent years. Each of the competitors mentioned above offers a unique value proposition to customers.

Whether you’re looking for an easy and hassle-free car buying experience or comprehensive service offerings, there is no shortage of options to consider. Customers have more control over their purchases and ownership than ever before, with more information and resources available to facilitate informed decisions.

Competitor 4: CarGurus

CarGurus is a vehicle listing site founded by Langley Steinert, co-founder of TripAdvisor. CarGurus provides a comprehensive car shopping experience for buyers by partnering with dealerships to provide prequalifying options and display dealer ratings.

Let’s take a closer look at this popular car retailing platform.

Prequalifying Options

CarGurus sets itself apart from other vehicle listing sites by offering prequalifying options and financing packages that allow car buyers to get a better understanding of what cars they can afford before they start browsing. Buyers can fill out simple forms online and receive personalized financing options from nearby lenders.

CarGurus also offers a trade-in feature that allows buyers to trade in their existing vehicles as part of their new car purchase.

Dealer Partnerships

One of the major advantages of using CarGurus is their dealer partnership program. CarGurus works with local dealerships to provide buyers with up-to-date information regarding inventory and pricing.

Dealerships can access detailed performance metrics and ratings through their CarGurus dealer dashboard, which allows dealers to make data-based decisions on how to price and market their vehicles effectively.

Leading Vehicle Listing Site

As of 2021, CarGurus claims to be the leading vehicle listing site in the US, with over 38 million monthly visitors. The platform offers a full range of buying and selling options, making it a popular choice for car buyers and sellers alike.

CarGurus is known for an intuitive search function that allows buyers to search for vehicles based on their needs, location, and pricing preferences.

Revenue and Employment

CarGurus generated $951.4 million in revenue in 2021, demonstrating the company’s continued success and growth. As of 2021, CarGurus employs over 5,000 people, making it a major employer in the automotive industry.

The company’s mission is to leverage technology and data to create a transparent and efficient buying experience for consumers. Competitor 5: TrueCar

TrueCar is a platform that offers a comprehensive car buying and selling experience to consumers.

With a focus on transparency and trust, TrueCar aims to be a reliable and dependable resource for consumers. Let’s dive deeper into what makes TrueCar stand out in the world of automotive retail.


One of the major advantages of TrueCar is their emphasis on transparency. The platform provides buyers with free access to comprehensive pricing information, including the average price paid in their area for a specific model, in addition to factory prices and VIN-specific data on available incentives.

This information empowers buyers to make informed decisions about their purchases.

Dealer Certification

Another unique aspect of TrueCar is its dealer certification program. The company works with local dealerships to ensure that they meet a set of rigorous standards, including fair and transparent pricing practices.

This program fosters trust between buyers and dealerships and helps ensure that buyers have a positive experience when purchasing a vehicle.

Comprehensive Car Buying and Selling Experience

TrueCar offers a comprehensive car buying and selling experience, from research to the purchase and trade-in of your vehicle. The platform allows you to search for specific vehicles based on your criteria and connects you with local dealerships that meet your needs.

TrueCar also offers a trade-in feature that allows you to get an estimated value for your existing vehicle.

A Focus on Trust

TrueCar’s mission is to provide a trustworthy and reliable platform for consumers to buy and sell cars. The platform’s emphasis on transparency, dealer certification, and comprehensive services demonstrates its commitment to this mission.

TrueCar aims to make the car buying and selling experience as easy as possible, with access to a wealth of information that empowers buyers and sellers to make informed decisions.


The world of automotive retail continues to evolve, with new players entering the market all the time. Companies like CarMax, AutoNation, CarGurus, and TrueCar provide comprehensive and innovative solutions for car buyers and sellers.

Whether you’re looking for a physical dealership, an online marketplace, or a platform that combines both, there is no shortage of options available. Consumers can take advantage of these platforms to educate themselves, shop around, and find the vehicle that best fits their needs and budget.

In conclusion, the world of car buying and selling has been transformed by the rise of online dealerships and automotive retail platforms. Companies such as Vroom, Carvana, CarMax, AutoNation, and CarGurus have revolutionized the industry, offering convenience, transparency, and a range of services to customers.

From the ability to purchase cars online and skip dealership visits to access to extensive inventories and comprehensive service offerings, these companies have made the car buying process more efficient and customer-friendly. As the automotive industry continues to evolve, these innovative approaches to car retailing are shaping the future of car ownership.

Whether you’re looking to buy or sell a car, these platforms provide valuable resources and options to consider. The key takeaway is that consumers now have more control, information, and choice than ever before when it comes to purchasing and owning a vehicle.

So, the next time you’re in the market for a car, consider exploring these online dealerships and automotive retail platforms for a seamless and satisfying experience.

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