The car-buying experience has gone through major shifts in recent years. Spending hours at a dealership to test drive a few cars then haggle with a salesperson used to be the norm, but today, buyers are in control, and they prefer to stay mostly online.

According to a poll from Deloitte, 80% of car buyers prefer to search for a car online and 78% would rather determine the final price of the vehicle online, too. The desire for convenience has spread to other parts of the buying journey, too. Socially distanced COVID-19 services—such as test driving at home without a salesperson present—have become so popular that buyers are demanding they stick around post pandemic.

With a lot less face time, car sellers should focus on building relationships with buyers, and they can do this through texting. Buyers love texting for its convenience and familiarity, and it’s how they’d prefer to engage with businesses. To get you started, we compiled 15 text message templates for car sales that can be used with customers. While these SMS car sales examples can be used as inspiration to create your own messaging, they can be a time-saving tool when paired with business texting software.

Car sales text message templates to use with business texting software

Simply copy and paste these car sales text message templates into your texting-for-business software. In our examples, we use two specific tools: Dynamic Fields and Templates. It’s crucial to have tools like these to create an effective workflow for dealerships.

  • Dynamic Fields (i.e., “[First Name]”) automatically pull contact details (e.g., name, email, job title, etc.) into any text message sent from Zipwhip. This feature also allows users to populate their own contact details, such as name and job title, into a message and provides custom fields for other relevant data like a car make and model.
  • Templates are great for sending the same message multiple times, like maintenance reminders and test drive follow-ups. You can store frequently used messages to save time and keep messaging consistent among all members of your team.

Learn more about other business texting features you can use to send an effective car sales text message, like Scheduled Messages and Group Messaging.

Car sales text message templates

In the car dealer text message samples below, anything enclosed in brackets is compatible with Zipwhip software. Any capitalized words should be adjusted based on your intended message.

1. Speak with a salesperson request

Hi there. Thanks for contacting DEALERSHIP. A team member will be with you shortly. In the meantime, please text us your name and let us know what we can help you with today.

2. Test drive appointment confirmation

car sales text template example appointment reminder

Hi [First Name]! This is [My First Name] from DEALERSHIP confirming your test drive on [Custom Field 1]. Please bring photocopies of your driver’s license and proof of insurance. If you have any questions, feel free to text me at this number. Looking forward to seeing you!

3. Test drive appointment reminder

This is a reminder that you have a test drive at DEALERSHIP scheduled on [Custom Field 1]. Remember to bring photocopies of your driver’s license and proof of insurance with you. If you need to cancel or reschedule, just reply to this text and a team member will help you out.

4. Test drive at home appointment request from online form fill

Hi [First Name]. I’m [My First Name] with DEALERSHIP. Thanks for your interest in test driving a CAR YEAR MAKE AND MODEL with us. Let’s set up a time for delivery. Is there a day and time this week that you prefer?

5. Test drive follow-up

Hi [First Name]. What did you think of the [Custom Field 1] after your test drive? Was there anything you liked or didn’t like that stood out?

6. General follow-up

Hi [First Name]! It’s [My First Name] with DEALERSHIP. I’m checking in about the cars you saw last week. Are there any questions you have that I can answer for you?

7. Expiring lease notice

car sales text message template reminder lease expiration

Hi [First Name]. The lease on your [Custom Field 1] is set to expire on [Custom Field 2]. I’m happy to chat with you about your options, whether it’s extending the lease or looking into an appraisal. Just reply to this text to get started.


8. Video walk throughs

Hey [First Name]! I’ve got the video walk-throughs of the vehicles you requested. They’re each about two-minutes long. Check them out when you have some time, and just reply to this text with any questions. You can view them by following this link to our shared Dropbox. LINK


9. Maintenance reminder

Hi [First Name], your [Custom Field 1] is due for maintenance! Would you like to set up an appointment to bring it into the dealership?


10. “Are you still in the market for a vehicle?” template

Hi [First Name], it’s [My First Name] with DEALERSHIP. It’s been a while since our last conversation! I wanted to check in about where you are in your car-buying journey. Are you still looking for a vehicle?

11. New car launch SMS sample

The new CAR YEAR MAKE AND MODEL has just landed in our lot! This all-wheel drive vehicle is sleek, compact and has an excellent five-star safety rating. Interested in taking it for a test drive or just want to learn more about the vehicle? Just reply to this text.


12. Trade in promotion

Hi [First Name]. [My First Name] here with DEALERSHIP. We’re running a trade-in promo that I thought you’d be interested in. Trade in your [Custom Field 1] before DATE and get an additional AMOUNT back! Just reply to this text if you’re interested or want to learn more.

13. Request a review after purchase

Hi [First Name]. Thank you again for becoming a member of the DEALERSHIP family. We’re always striving to improve the car-buying journey for future customers, and the best way we can do that is by hearing about your experience with us. If you have a few minutes, could you leave a review for us online? We appreciate your time! LINK

14. Text marketing list confirmation

car sales text template marking list opt-in example

DEALERSHIP: Welcome! You’re now subscribed to our text marketing list. You’ll be among the first to hear about promotions and savings from our dealership. To unsubscribe anytime, text STOP.

15. Sales follow-up

Hi [First Name]! I’m checking in to see how the [Custom Field 1] is treating you. Is everything running smoothly? Let me know if there’s anything I can help you with.


Tips for sending car dealer text messages

There are few things to know before sending car dealer text messages to customers.

  • Get permission before texting. Per TCPA guidelines (Telephone Consumer Protection Act), businesses should always have permission from the customer before sending the first text. This can be done in a variety of ways, such as asking in person or by having the customer fill out an online form where they provide their phone number. Read through TCPA guidelines to stay informed.
  • Don’t be too salesy. Be thoughtful about your texts. You’re not sending an email or writing an advertisement. Texting is a personal medium and customers want it to be treated that way. Use natural, conversational language to build trust and strengthen relationships.
  • Keep it short. Texting is meant for short messages. Show customers that you respect their time by getting straight to the point. If you find yourself writing a long text, consider sending an email or hopping on a call.
  • Let them know who you are. Customers may not have your number saved in their phone so don’t forget to identify yourself. This also lets them know that there’s a human on the other end of the text if they have questions. A seamless option is to use a text message signature with business texting software that you can toggle on and off when needed.
  • Give customers the option to opt-out. This is another TCPA rule that businesses should follow. Let customers know that they can stop receiving texts from you or your dealership at any time. This is often done by texting the word STOP. Business texting software will have this function built-in to automate the process. Read more about it in our TCPA e-book.

For more about the ins and outs of texting with customers and how to automate SMS car sales, including texting etiquette, common use cases and how to find the right texting tool, download a free copy of The Ultimate Guide to Texting Your Customers.

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