No, it’s not a machine for your car that will allow you to sell Cokes to your children on the move, this is a building-sized vending machine filled with actual luxury cars. Potential customers will have to first download the vending machine’s app, go to the machine, select their choice of luxury car on their phone, and if they have a good enough credit score on Alibaba’s Sesame Credit system, they can then make an initial 10% payment. After that, they can watch their car roll down the machine, hop in, drive off, and make monthly payments.
Alibaba says that it wants to make buying a car as easy as buying a can of Coke, Tmall, the name which will appear on the machine and is Alibaba’s e-commerce website, already sells a selection of half of the worlds luxury car brands online in China, so assumedly the vending machine will be filled with the same options for eager buyers. Alibaba is often referred to as the Amazon of China, and occasionally comes out with rival products to Amazon, in this instance, the company is trying out something which Amazon has not (yet) done, but they are still falling short of the things that the Japanese manage to sell in vending machines; you know, like live lobsters or panties.
Snapchat was recently using vending machines to sell their new unique camera sunglasses, so it seems vending machines are having a bit of a revival. But once these car vending machines are setup in China, the inevitable vending machine dilemmas will present themselves; if my car gets stuck in the machine, should I buy another one to dislodge it? Or should I try to shake the machine?