Skip to main content

Break out the crinkly dollars: Carvana launches world’s first car vending machine

Carvana – Car Vending Machine
Let’s face it — nobody really likes buying cars. We like driving them, we like showing them off, and we certainly like talking about them, but filling out paperwork and haggling over prices at the dealership is at the very least a drag. What if buying a car were as convenient as picking up a can of soda?

We inched closer to that reality today with the launch of the first-ever automated, coin-operated car vending machine in Tennessee. It’s the brainchild of online auto retailer Carvana, who looks to simplify the vehicle purchasing process as much as possible while adding a truly unique delivery experience.

“Carvana created the original car vending machine concept in Atlanta in 2014, and we’ve spent the last year taking this experience to a whole new level,” said Ernie Garcia, CEO of Carvana. “Our new vending machine is a state-of-the-art, multi-story structure that delivers our customers’ cars by merely inserting a custom coin. Carvana’s mission is to create a better way to by a car, and this new vending machine will be a one-of-a-kind experience that mirrors just how simple and easy we’ve made it to buy a car online.”

As life events go, purchasing a vehicle is slightly more significant than opening a bag of pretzels, so the Carvana process involves a bit more than putting a coin in a slot. Buyers must still purchase their car online — a service Carvana has offered since 2013 — and then they travel to the pickup site in Nashville. Once there, they’re met by a five-story glass structure that holds 20 cars, three customer delivery bays, and a welcome center.

Since the work has already been done on the Web, all the customer has to do is select their name from a kiosk and insert a special Carvana-branded coin into the appropriate slot. Like a larger-than-life carnival attraction, the tower springs to life and automatically shuttles the car down to the ground-level delivery bay, where Carvana employees are available for help if needed. Presumably, they’re also trained to keep people from rocking the tower to get another car.

The company says more vending machines are on the way, but if you can’t wait, Carvana will subsidize $200 in airfare and arrange white glove transportation from the Nashville airport if you live outside of Tennessee. You don’t get that with your M&Ms.

Andrew Hard
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Andrew first started writing in middle school and hasn't put the pen down since. Whether it's technology, music, sports, or…
Razer to use vending machines to distribute millions of free face masks
Razer vending machine selling masks

We heard just a few weeks ago how gaming hardware maker Razer was repurposing some of its manufacturing facilities to help produce much-needed face masks for front-line health-care workers.

Now it’s set to use vending machines to help get free masks to the adult residents of Singapore, the city-state from which Razer CEO Min-Liang Tan hails.

Read more
Lexus unveils its first electric car, but it’s unlikely to be sold in the U.S.
Lexus 300e



Read more
Volkswagen breaks ground on U.S. electric car factory, production starts in 2022
volkswagen breaks ground on united states electric car factory id crozz concept

Shortly after starting mass production of electric cars in Germany, Volkswagen took the first step toward doing the same in the United States. VW previously said it would start making electric cars at its Chattanooga, Tennessee, factory in 2022. Now the German automaker has broken ground on an expansion of the factory to make that happen.

The expansion includes a 564,000-square-foot addition to the factory's body shop, and a new 198,000-square-foot facility that will assemble battery packs. Volkswagen is spending $800 million on the expansion, and expects to add 1,000 jobs in Chattanooga.

Read more