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Cat-Shaped Vending Machine In China Dispenses Cars

Alibaba sets plans for a new and improved way of test driving cars.

Photo by Alibaba Group

Buying a car is a huge step in life. It’s often considered a crucial step in becoming an adult. Imagine if test driving a car could be so fun that you could feel like a kid again. Well, in China, that dream is becoming a reality. A company called Alibaba has plans to open a cat-shaped vending machine for cars. 

There are plans for two giant Pez-like dispensers for cars: one in Shanghai, and one in Nanjing. These vending machines are changing the game of buying cars. They operate like large vending machines and Ferris wheels. The machine rotates the cars looking for the model you are interested in. But this new process is not all fun and games and open to anyone. There are some hoops to jump through, although those hoops don’t seem to be too difficult to hop through.

Steps To Test Driving A Car

  1. See a car you like. Take a picture of it on the Taobao app, run by Alibaba.
  2. Schedule a test drive with the model after submitting some information about yourself along with a selfie to confirm your identity.
  3. Go to the closest vending machine. The machine will dispense your car.
  4. Drive it around for three days. This is the maximum test-driving period.
  5. Buy the car from your phone, or return it to the Tmall Auto Facility (cat-shaped vending machine), and be on your way.

Guidelines And Rules

Alibaba is only allowing for one test drive per model, and a maximum of five test drives in the first two months using the program. These guidelines are set to help regulate the usage of the luxury. This way, no one will abuse this awesome opportunity.

This new process of buying cars may one day make its way over to America. In fact, Mercedes-Benz, Maserati, BMW, Audi and Volvo are all signed up to be a part of Alibaba’s project. The machines are set to open in January 2018. With big technological advances like this one, it’s crazy to think about where the world could go in the future.

Check out what the world could look like in the future if we follow on this path!

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