The DMS specialist said the trend was being driven by manufacturers that want to increase the level of real time information from their dealerships to gauge the regional affects of the credit crunch.
Neville Briggs, Pinewood managing director, said: "It is also being prompted by dealers who, in the face of tougher economic conditions, want to ensure that they maximise every opportunity that faces them and are looking to their manufacturer and their dealer management systems to help them do so.”
Briggs explained the amount of IT integration between the two parties was growing rapidly. A few years ago, the only IT links between dealer and manufacturer were purely practical – such as enabling a dealer to order parts from one of their manufacturer’s IT system direct from their own DMS.
He said: "We are now seeing information of all kinds flowing both ways through IT - about customer profiling, CSI, model recalls triggered by the vehicle registration, menu pricing, sales leads linked to particular models and more.
"Manufacturers who would a few years ago have only a rough idea of how many vehicles they had sold until the end of the month can now have accurate figures within moments."
A further trend emerging as a result of greater integration is that dealers are starting to move away from standalone, single purpose systems, Briggs added.
He said: "Worthwhile system integration relies on dealers being able to consolidate information in one place. Using a variety of standalone systems makes this difficult, so we are seeing more demand for core DMS systems that can handle any task that a dealer may need to undertake."