If you’ve ever been to a traditional used vehicle auction, you know it’s quite the sensory overload. Auction drivers simultaneously run vehicles for sale through several lanes one by one, as auctioneers and ring persons enthusiastically call attention to vehicle features and current bid prices — all while potential buyers evaluate on the spot whether the vehicle is worth their money.
In November, ADESA Montreal, one of our 74 North American wholesale vehicle auctions, hosted a first-of-its-kind auto auction sales event. Nine of the largest commercial consignors in Canada worked in close collaboration with the executive sales team to offer more than 500 vehicles from three different ADESA Canada locations — Montreal, Ottawa and Quebec. Car dealers from across the country bid on the vehicles in-lane and via ADESA Simulcast, the company’s live online auction platform. But unlike the experience I mentioned beforehand, none of the vehicles were actually physically driven through the auction lane.
That’s because this auction was a virtual-only sale thanks to ADESA VirtuaLane® technology and its multisite capabilities. ADESA VirtuaLane is a live auction experience utilizing advanced technology to bring the same energy and excitement to our auction customers, but instead of cars physically driving through the auction lanes, big-screen monitors showcase the vehicle and its features during bidding. The great success of ADESA Montreal’s sale event had me reflecting on the technological advancements in our industry — and how ADESA VirtuaLane technology and its multisite capabilities are a game changer for the auto auction industry in three ways.
Safety — Those of us in the industry have witnessed safety incidents far too many times over the course of our careers. That’s why KAR Global and ADESA continue to make it a priority to implement best-in-class technology, training and standard procedures to reduce the risk of potential accidents in the lanes and beyond. VirtuaLane is a true pioneer in the space. While it eliminates the safety risks that can arise with vehicles driving in the lanes, it still gives customers the vibrant, upbeat auction experience they’re looking for and peace of mind with the ability to view listed vehicles up close before the sale begins.
Convenience — Safety is the priority, but convenience is certainly an added benefit of ADESA VirtuaLane’s multisite capabilities. Yes, our customers can certainly come to the physical auction and check out the vehicles in person, but they can also join online with the ADESA Simulcast platform. Can’t make it to the VirtuaLane auction this month? Don’t feel like driving in poor weather conditions to the auction during the winter months? Getting out of town early for the holidays? No problem — you can simply place your bid online.
More solutions — When it comes to technology, it’s not about pushing one method or another, but rather providing a multitude of reliable solutions that allow our customers — both sellers and buyers — to choose what works best for them. That’s the same with VirtuaLane, too. And, with our recent demonstration of selling more than 500 vehicles from three different auction locations, more solutions means access to more inventory, too.
I would be remiss not to mention, behind every technological innovation is an incredible team working diligently to ensure it is rolled out seamlessly to the organization and customers. The ADESA Montreal, Ottawa and Quebec teams — from auction management and auctioneers to the teams prepping the cars for sale and the IT gurus behind the scenes — should be proud of what we’ve accomplished. Together, we’re demonstrating the power of our technology one sale at a time.