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vLane Launches Automotive Research Site to Give New Power to Car Buyers

September 17, 2008

vLane (www.vlane.com), a new website that offers consumers a collaborative automotive shopping experience, announced its launch today. Created to help consumers overcome the challenges they face while researching a vehicle, vLane’s rich tools and features enable car buyers to leverage feedback, insight and experience-based knowledge from people whose opinions they value and trust. Built to offer consumers an improved way to discover, research and choose their next vehicle, vLane helps shoppers find relevant information from numerous sources across the web and locate the best new or used cars available for purchase.

“Eighty percent of car buyers rely on the Internet as a first step in car shopping yet with the existing online experience, consumers are left to perform their vehicle research in isolation. They have limited access to the wealth of information available within their network of friends and family,” said Herman Paek, founder of vLane. “vLane’s new online tools help vehicle buyers gain insight into the car options that best fit their needs and receive personalized feedback and recommendations from their trusted network, as well as fellow vehicle shoppers and owners, to inform their car purchasing decisions.”

“We are seeing a significant shift in the way buyers are leveraging the Internet to research information during the vehicle shopping process,” said Mohit Takyar, senior manager, Capgemini Automotive Practice, which tracks consumer web usage as part of its annual Cars Online global automotive study. “Consumers today consider the insight and feedback from other car buyers’ experiences one of the most reliable sources of objective information they can trust and are quickly increasing their use of collaborative web tools including forums, blogs or Internet discussion groups. Automotive sites that offer innovative consumer-to-consumer tools and improve on current methods of information sharing may become an increasingly more powerful influence driving car purchase decisions.”

With consumers facing gas prices hovering near historic highs along with uncertainty about the overall economy, it is more important than ever that they are equipped with the right tools and information when making the complex and expensive decision of purchasing a vehicle. With the vFinder vehicle discovery tool, car buyers are able to easily filter and find the vehicles that match their needs based on the criteria that are important to them. For example, a user could specify fuel efficiency, seating capacity and budget range requirements and vLane will find the new and/or used vehicles that match all of their criteria.

Users also can directly compare vehicles across numerous performance categories to determine which option is superior. This feature enables buyers interested in gas savings to easily assess how much they can save in fuel costs by upgrading to any of their specified choices. Additionally, vLane users can discover new vehicles to consider and better refine their choices by reviewing the actions and experiences of previous vehicle shoppers with similar needs. Each user’s actions and decisions contribute to a repository of shared vehicle shopping knowledge and helps follow-on shoppers make better decisions. Over time, vLane users’ ongoing collaboration builds a better research experience for shoppers.

Consumers consider feedback and advice of friends, family and other consumers to be highly valuable sources of information during their vehicle purchases, and vLane’s tools are designed to simplify the outreach and collection of this information. Whether trying to decide on the best choice of vehicle or looking for help in answering a question about a particular car, users can start discussions with their trusted contacts or other vLane users to seek advice and opinions about their purchase considerations. Users can easily share these discussions with their friends on social networks or embed them directly on external blogs and websites, to reach and seek advice from their already established online networks.

About vLane

vLane helps consumers make more informed vehicle purchasing decisions by providing advanced tools for vehicle discovery, research and collaboration. With vLane, shoppers can harness the insights and knowledge contained in their network of friends, family and other car shoppers as a valuable source of information during their vehicle purchases. vLane was founded in 2007 and is headquartered in Mountain View, California. For more information visit www.vlane.com.

SOURCE: vLane




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