Amazon to start delivering orders straight to drivers' trunks in May

Amazon and DHL are piloting a scheme that will see deliveries made straight to Audi owners' vehicles - whether they're there or not.

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Delivery drivers will place parcels directly in your car's trunk. Image: DHL
Amazon wants to turn the trunk of your car into your mailbox. As part of a partnership with Audi and DHL Parcel, the online retail giant is launching a pilot project next month in Germany that will send packages directly to the cars of customers in the Munich area.

The idea behind the project is to eliminate the problem of missed deliveries, and if the pilot proves successful, Amazon will make the service part of its Prime customer program everywhere -- and not just for Audi owners.

"We are working to offer Prime members a delivery location that is always available and convenient: the trunk of their car," Michael Pasch, director of EU Amazon Prime, said. "This innovation makes shopping at Amazon even easier and more flexible. It gives customers another way to receive their orders."

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For the trial, participating Audi owners have agreed to let their car be tracked for the timeframe of the delivery. The DHL driver with the package then uses a smartphone app to locate the car and gain keyless access to the trunk. After the delivery is made, the trunk locks automatically, and the car owner receives an email notification that the package has been delivered.

The delivery driver can reach cars wherever they are parked, including public and company lots, as well as on the street. And if customers don't like what they find in their trunks, they can put the packages back in and schedule a return pickup.

Amazon is expecting the project to be popular, and so is Audi. The German automaker is planning to launch a service called 'Audi connect easy delivery' so that car owners can receive packages from a variety of online retailers via the trunks of their cars.

"With comprehensive connectivity, we are transforming the car into a service device and integrating it even more closely into the everyday lives of our customers," Luca de Meo, member of the board of management for sales at Audi, said.

The pilot project will take place over the next few months, and if successful, the service will then be expanded.

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