Car Dealer API Opens a Closed Industry

Adam DuVander
Feb. 23 2010, 03:01AM EST

First an API for cars, now there's one for the places that sell them. A new service from GOSO creates a standard interface to report real-time inventory and other car details. Any developer can now tap into this data and let users know where to find that blue Camry.

GOSO dealer inventory API

Everything you'd expect to see in a car listing is passed from the API. The car's mileage, wholesale cost and import date, in addition to more mundane facts like VIN number. A photo is also supplied. See the GOSO documentation and our GOSO API profile for details.

Currently the API does not appear to support search across dealers. Instead, it's focused on accessing inventory on a per-dealership basic. One could piece together such a search by caching dealer data. It's also reasonable to expect further features from GOSO, as it gains adoption.

The press release makes a good case for disruption:

For years, the automotive dealer industry has been very closed, making it very difficult for auto dealers to hire creative advertising agencies or web development firms outside of a small group of established automotive vendors. The new GOSO API lowers the entry barrier and will welcome innovation in 2010 with participating dealers.

To further spur innovation. GOSO plans a developer contest later this spring. We'll report when there are more details. The company's founder, Adam Boalt, has a developer contest background himself. Boalt wrote D.C. Historic Tours (pictured below), which won first prize in the "Apps for Democracy" contest.

D.C. Historic Tours

Adam DuVander -- Adam heads developer relations at Orchestrate, a database-as-a-service company. He's spent many years analyzing APIs and developer tools. Previously he worked at SendGrid, edited ProgrammableWeb and wrote for Wired and Webmonkey. Adam is also the author of mapping API cookbook Map Scripting 101.

Comments

Comments(3)

This is one of those apps that is very useful but needs top down (manufacturer) and bottom up (dealer) support. If a manufacturer would just get behind this it could have a huge market impact. Particularly if it was simultaneously integrated into their .com and mobile offerings.