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Alibaba's Tmall launches car 'vending machine' in partnership with Ford

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.-owned Tmall on March 26 unveiled its multistory car dispensary in Guangzhou, China, featuring more than 100 Ford Motor Co. vehicles.

Customers can choose a Ford vehicle via the Tmall app, pick up the selected car at the unmanned car "vending machine" and take the car for a three-day test drive before they decide to buy it. The service is available until April 23. Customers are required to send a photo of themselves to verify their identity and submit an initial deposit electronically using the Tmall app.

The service was announced in December 2017 and offers a selection of cars for users of Alibaba's online shopping platform Tmall.

Alibaba's center offers only Ford models, including the Explorer SUV, Mustang and Escort, as part of a December 2017 agreement between the two companies.

The Chinese retailer said it intends to build similar car vending machines in Beijing and Hangzhou.