Alex Jones, CarbaseAlex Jones, Carbase


What I learned: Used car dealer Alex Jones reports from the NADA show halls

  • Car Dealer asked Carbase COO to report back from the show halls of NADA 2024
  • Huge event brings together car dealers from across the world to hear best practice advice
  • Jones will be speaking at our forthcoming Car Dealer Live event on March 7

Time 7:01 am, February 13, 2024

With final preparations being made for our Car Dealer Live event on March 7, a trip across the pond to NADA was out of the question for us – so instead we asked Carbase COO Alex Jones to report back on the huge expo for us.

Jones was at the show, held in Las Vegas at the start of this month, to listen to the latest trends from some of the world’s biggest automotive suppliers and car dealers. Here, he writes exclusively for us about what were his highlights.

Jones will be appearing on our independent dealer panel at our forthcoming Car Dealer Live event, being held at the British Motor Museum at Gaydon. Headline interviews will take place with Peter Vardy and used car specialist Peter Waddell in a packed day of talks. Tickets are available here.

Navigating NADA 2024: Insights and innovations from the heart of the automotive world

Hello Car Dealer readers,

I’m freshly back from the whirlwind that was NADA 2024, and I’m here to share some of the highlights, insights, and game-changing ideas I picked up from the event.

It’s an exciting time to be in the automotive industry, and the four days of NADA’s workshops, Dealer Learning Lab, Super Sessions and 500-plus exhibitors in more than 700,000 sq ft of exhibition space was the perfect showcase of the innovation, challenges and opportunities that lie ahead of us.

First off, a big thank you to James and Car Dealer for giving me this platform to share my experience and for their generous donation to Ben in recognition of this post. Also to the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) for welcoming international visitors to such an amazing event. 

Strategic Use of Data: The new frontier

One of the most striking themes from NADA 2024 was the emphasis on data-driven decision-making. The ability to sift through, analyse, and act upon vast amounts of data is no longer a nice-to-have – it’s a must have.

Sessions highlighted innovative ways to leverage analytics for inventory management, understanding customer behaviour and making operational decisions that align with market dynamics. The message was clear: Mastering data analytics is mastering the future of auto retail.

Technology: The enabler of modern auto retail

Technology’s role as both a disruptor and an enabler was another hot topic. From VIN scoring to AI-driven customer service platforms, the discussions revolved around how technology can streamline operations, enhance the customer experience and open new avenues for sales and service.

The integration of digital tools is not just about keeping pace with the times; it’s about setting the pace for the industry’s future.

NADA 2024

Culture and Accountability: The foundation of success

Perhaps the most profound takeaway was the focus on building a culture of excellence and accountability within dealerships.

NADA 2024 drove home the point that technology and data are only as good as the people using them. Fostering a work environment that values continuous improvement, rewards achievement and encourages a customer-first mindset is key to navigating the complexities of today’s automotive landscape.

Standout sessions

Among the standout sessions for me was a deep dive into the use of AI for inventory management by predicting demand and aligning stock with market needs. Another highlight was the discussion around creating a seamless, tech-driven customer journey, from online engagement to in-dealership experiences.

The buzz around leveraging AI for everything from lead management to after-sales service underscored the industry’s shift towards more personalised, efficient customer interactions. And let’s not forget the emphasis on sustainability and electric vehicles, signalling a shift in inventory focus and dealership operations to cater to the evolving consumer preferences.

As I gear up for Car Dealer Live, I’m excited to delve deeper into these topics and discuss how we can apply these insights to our businesses on this side of the pond.

The automotive industry is on the cusp of a new era, and events like NADA 2024 are invaluable in charting our course through it. 

I look forward to seeing you at Car Dealer Live at the British Motor Museum in Gaydon. March 7, 2024. Tickets are available here.

James Baggott's avatar

James is the founder and editor-in-chief of Car Dealer Magazine, and CEO of parent company Baize Group. James has been a motoring journalist for more than 20 years writing about cars and the car industry.

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