NOT YOUR FATHER'S CAR SITE"This is not going to be just a database search site. We want to help consumers in a broad way, from navigating the purchase price to getting the best financing and insurance," said Victor A. "Chip" Perry III, president-CEO of AutoConnect.AutoConnect will earn money from traditional Internet banners, sponsorship advertising and custom publishing. However, the new owners also plan to make money through transaction fees, similar to the way in which car dealers today earn fees from loan companies, warranty providers and insurance sales.The site will include its own editorial content on subjects such as lease vs. loan and tips for buying or selling. The owners are currently selecting an interactive ad agency.Another car site, Barnett Banks' subsidiary CarFinance.com, will expand its online auto financing services from 29 to 44 states by the first quarter of 1998. CarFinance.com has partnerships with nine other auto sites to link to its financing service.And last week, Keystone Financial launched a personalized decision guide for car shopping on its site (www.keyfin.com), to help drive new automobile financing transactions.Keystone said it's looking for a way to increase market share with a value-added service on the Net.
CAR MAKERS ADD NEW FEATURESAlso last week, Microsoft CarPoint (www.carpoint.com), an information site for buying new and used cars, was selected as the official Internet site for the 1998 North American International Autoshow in Detroit Jan. 5-19.Meanwhile, car marketers such as General Motors Corp. are adding more finance features to their sites, such as GM's new credit