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TrueCar+ online sales tool is heading to more markets this year, CEO Mike Darrow says:

TrueCar CEO Mike Darrow said the company hopes to expand its TrueCar+ digital sales tool to other markets by the third quarter, with used vehicles likely growing faster than new vehicles.

Darrow told Automotive News on Friday that the goal is to have used vehicles available nationwide through TrueCar+ by early 2023 and new vehicles available in three to four other markets outside of Florida along the East Coast by the end of this year.

And TrueCar’s acquisition this month of digital retail provider Digital Motors has already brought new features to TrueCar’s proprietary online sales platform.

The integration of Digital Motors’ technology comes as TrueCar, of Santa Monica, California, aims to expand the reach of its TrueCar+ tool, allowing consumers to choose a vehicle, set up financing, add protection products, arrange delivery and complete a transaction all primarily within the TrueCar platform. It started as a pilot in Tampa, Florida, in September and expanded to other markets in that state before a public launch in March.

Darrow said Digital Motors’ technology contributes to a menu of vehicle protection products consumers can select in TrueCar+.

“We’ve already integrated them. They are very agile,” said Darrow after a presentation at the Automotive Press Association in Detroit. “We think they’re going to be a good addition for us. And they’ve done or worked a lot of the things that we want to bring to market, so we think they can definitely accelerate us to get there.”

Founded by Andy Hinrichs, Digital Motors went live in March 2020 at the start of the pandemic, months ahead of schedule. Darrow said in May that TrueCar is considering acquisitions that could provide “smart, plug-in capabilities” that could advance TrueCar’s proprietary technology platform.

“We think they’ll speed us up for years to get things out,” Darrow said. “And it gives us an extra development team. It gives us some experience in areas that we didn’t have.”

TrueCar aims to be a vehicle listings marketplace that connects buyers and sellers of vehicles, Darrow told the Automotive Press Association. The auto retail industry is changing, he said, with new entrants introducing new online sales models — from start-up electric vehicle manufacturers to digital used vehicle retailers such as Carvana and Vroom.

Automakers are also expanding into space. But Darrow said he believes marketplace sales platforms like TrueCar+ could play a role alongside the other models, including enabling consumers to cross-shopping brands.

“We can help consumers figure out which brand they’re interested in, and if that brand has an ordering system that they want us to flow the orders through, we might as well do that,” he said.

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