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Jim Taylor has been the CEO of Hummer since October of 2008.  Prior to that, he was the General Manager of Cadillac.  Since beginning his GM career in 1980 with[…]

Although 70 percent of a customer’s buying process takes place on the internet, the emotion, (and the pricetag), involved mean that the deal is almost always clinched in person.

Question: Do people buy Cadillacs online?

Taylor:    What’s happening in that area, there was a little flurry a few years ago about literally online purchasing.  And again, because the franchise system and many other factors instill a very significant investment, you know, maybe the second or third largest you make in your life and it is a physical product so what’s really going on, to be more realistic, is somewhere in the tune of, would say, 70 or 80% of the shopping and the investigation and the exploration and the features and then all of the comparison that used to really require you to go out and visit numerous dealerships, ask several salesmen questions and kind of gather all that up before you make your purchase decision.  Now, it’s much much simpler and done online, so from an online standpoint, that activity and would say again, 70 to 80% of that takes place online but physically, again, the nature of this product is [IB] emotional product, [IB] colors involved, seeing something in full sheet metal rather than seeing it online is all important for the amount of money that you’re spending.  So that last 20% is still done physically at the dealership and of course, there’s the price activity that isn’t just the price, it’s the financing, the terms, and the taxes and the closing, you know?  It’s… it’s still a complicated closure so that push and feeling and [IB] several years ago, boy, this is going to shift to being, literally, an online purchase like you’re buying a computer, this doesn’t happen.