The internet-based Fiat Link programme also enables salesmen to help customers build the car they want and can provide finance quotes and act as a stock locator.
“We want to improve what our dealers are doing in both new and used car sales,” says Claudio San Pedro, vice president of the Fiat Auto business unit.
San Pedro adds that Fiat Link will take the company closer to its objective of maximising customer service and satisfaction, a key part of the £1.5bn turnaround plan launched by retiring Fiat Auto chief executive officer Giancarlo Boschetti in summer 2002.
The system has been on trial for the past 18 months in Belgium, Italy and Spain. Fiat says it could be a feature of UK showrooms by 2005. Dealers are able to 'walk' customers through the new car process. Fiat Link is split into several sections to help prospects choose model, version, colour, options and aftermarket dealer-fit accessories. It also allows dealers to offer quotes for finance packages and it can even be used as an online stock locator to source cars across Europe.
The loyalty section allows customers to collect points when they bring the car back to the dealer for service and repair work, helping to tie them to the business.
Fiat says the points can be used towards a discount off their next vehicle purchase or redeemed as a cash sum if the buyer decides not to have another Fiat. The system will also documents each customer who chooses not to buy and it includes a diary for storing contacts and creating follow up reminders.