General Motors and its dealers will test a partnership with eBay Inc in California that allows customers to bid on new vehicles or buy them at a predetermined price online, the automaker said on Friday.
We'll be testing this and other ideas with our dealers over the next few weeks and hope to expand and build upon them in the coming months, GM Chief Executive Fritz Henderson said in a statement.
The West Coast, which has been dominated by import brands over the past several years, has been the weakest regional market for the U.S. auto industry overall in recent months under the crushing impact from the economic downturn.
Experiments are experiments ... You don't roll them out until you figure out if they work, Henderson told reporters. We are excited about it, but I wouldn't commit to rolling it out more broadly until we find out if it's successful.
A new GM emerged from bankruptcy on Friday.
EBay shares were up 24 cents, or 1.5 percent, at $16.33 in morning Nasdaq trading.
(Reporting by David Bailey; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn)