Fiat Selling Special 500 via Web Only

In an experiment with e-commerce, the Italian carmaker will sell a diesel edition of its popular 500 compact only to online buyers in Britain

Fiat (FIA.MI) is selling a special edition of its 500 model directly through its UK website.

Six hundred of the 500byDIESEL special editions will be available exclusively through Fiat's website for the next couple of months. For the online sales, dealerships will only be involved in the delivery of the vehicle.

Customers wanting to get their hands on the 500 special edition will need to start by going to Fiat's website to specify the options for their car before paying a deposit and ordering the car direct from the factory.

Once the order has been placed they will be able to track the progress of the car online as well as paying the balance before arranging to have the car delivered to the most convenient dealership.

A Fiat spokesman told that the dealers will still be involved as they will prepare the cars for customers once they have been delivered, for which they will receive commission.

When asked if Fiat would look to more web-only selling in the future, the spokesman said: "If this system goes well, which we think it will, there's every chance."

Any 500s not sold after the initial two-month web sales period will be made available through the traditional route of Fiat dealers.

This is the first time Fiat has sold cars directly through its website but the company previously ran an online deposit scheme for the Abarth version of its 500.

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