How Chevrolet is Adapting the Car Buying Process for Shoppers During the Coronavirus Pandemic

Jack R. Nerad | Apr 16, 2020

In concert with its fellow General Motors brands — Buick, Cadillac, and GMC — Chevrolet has assembled a multi-pronged effort to respond to the health and business challenges presented by the coronavirus pandemic in the United States.

How Chevrolet is Adapting the Car Buying Process for Shoppers During the Coronavirus Pandemic

Under the umbrella "Chevy Cares: We're Open," the brand is offering support to current owners and lessees and special incentives for new customers, including deals for first responders. In addition, Chevy dealers have changed their methods of operation to emphasize procedures that will help them maintain social distancing and serve customers who cannot come into dealerships. In all it is an impressive array of new programs, proving a big brand like Chevy can turn on a dime when necessary.

The following are details of the many initiatives Chevrolet has undertaken to serve customers during the crisis.

Chevrolet New-Vehicle Incentives - Find the best deals!

As the pandemic began to hit in earnest, Chevrolet introduced a series of very generous incentives that are reminiscent of those offered during the Great Recession of 2008-2009. Chevy is offering interest-free financing on a variety of models for a lengthy loan term of 84 months and well-qualified buyers are able to defer the first payment for up to 120 days on most 2019 models and on many popular 2020 models. Among the vehicles qualifying for the 120-day payment deferral are Chevrolet Silverado, Chevrolet Equinox, Chevrolet Trax, and Chevrolet Bolt EV. Additional vehicles that offer the 120-day payment deferral are available regionally. To obtain the special financing and payment deferral the vehicle must be financed through General Motors Financial.

For those interested in leasing rather than buying a Chevrolet vehicle, the brand has also introduced the "Sign & Drive" leasing program. Via the program customers can lease several Chevy models with no first-month's payment, no "down" payment, and no security deposit. Among the models offering this leasing option are the Trax, Equinox, and Silverado.

In addition, the Chevy First Responder Discount Program gives special lease and purchase discounts to firefighters, law enforcement officers, EMTs, paramedics, 911 dispatchers, and healthcare professionals.

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Chevrolet Dealership Changes - Find the best deals!

Chevrolet operates one of the largest franchised dealer organizations in the United States, and they have pivoted their operations quickly to contend with new business and personal movement restrictions that have accompanied the coronavirus epidemic. A high percentage of Chevrolet dealers nationwide are open for sales, service, and parts business, but operating hours are curtailed in some locales and in virtually all locations dealers are cognizant of social distancing guidelines and other disease-preventative measures.

Many Chevy dealers are expanding their use of GM's online buying system "Shop. Click. Drive." While you can shop on the Chevrolet national website, the “Shop. Click. Drive.” process is initiated on an individual dealer's website where the customer can view inventory. Once a specific vehicle is chosen, the customer clicks on the "Start Buying Process" button to begin the transaction. The customer can then get a trade-in estimate, choose finance or lease options and create a deal. Once the deal is agreed to, the customer can then schedule delivery at home or pick up at the Chevy showroom.

Should the customer desire to test drive the vehicle before signing the deal, there are several options. You can schedule an appointment at the dealership; you can request an appointment to test at the location of your choice; or you can complete your test drive before you sign the final documents at delivery.

Chevrolet Customer Relief & Support - Find the best deals!

Rapid business closures have meant unexpected layoffs for millions of American workers, and other workers have seen their hours and paychecks radically cut as business has slowed markedly. Sudden income loss has made it difficult for recent car buyers and lessees to make their monthly payments on time, so Chevrolet has instituted a program that offers delayed payment options.

Chevrolet customers who got an auto loan or secured a lease through GM Financial can reach out to the company to discuss their options. Among them are flexible payment arrangements and extensions for qualified customers on a case-by-case basis. For Chevy customers, GM Financial can be reached through

Chevy owners and lessees who financed or leased their vehicles with a lender other than GM Financial are urged to contact that institution directly should they need payment relief.

In addition to possible payment adjustments Chevrolet is also making OnStar Crisis Assist services available for all its connected vehicle owners. The services include the availability of OnStar Advisors and complimentary in-vehicle data for all Wi-Fi-equipped vehicles.

Chevrolet Community Support - Find the best deals!

In response to the constantly-evolving challenges brought on by the coronavirus pandemic, Chevrolet and other General Motors brands have invested $2.65 million in 40 nonprofits and are supporting employee volunteer and donation efforts. Included in these efforts is a $1 million grant to the "DonorsChoose Keep Kids Learning" program, which provides $1,000 credits to 1,000 teachers in high-need school districts to send resources like books, pencils, notebooks, food, and cleaning supplies to students' homes.

An additional $1.65 million in grant funding has been sent to GM facility communities across the country. Each facility dedicates its share of the funds to nonprofits providing critical services to their communities. Included are food and housing assistance, small business support, and at-home learning resources for parents, teachers, and students.

The information contained in this article was accurate as of April 15, 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic is a fluid situation, and automakers are making regular changes to their efforts to help customers, support dealers and communities, and encourage sales.

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