Edmunds (company)

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Edmunds.com Inc. (stylized as Edmunds) is an American online resource for automotive information. The company is headquartered in Santa Monica, California, and maintains an office in downtown Detroit, Michigan.[1] Edmunds is privately held, with CarMax holding a minority stake.[2]

IndustryAutomotive information services
Founded1966 (1966)
FounderLudwig Arons
Area served
United States
Key people
Avi Steinlauf, CEO


Edmunds was founded by Ludwig Arons in 1966 as Edmunds Publications, a publisher of printed booklets consolidating automotive specifications to help car shoppers make buying decisions.[3] In 1988, the company was purchased by Peter Steinlauf whose family has owned a majority stake since.[4]

By the 1990s, Edmunds published its data to CD-ROM while also publishing books such as Edmunds New Cars & Trucks Buyer's Guide, Edmunds Used Cars & Trucks Buyer's Guide and Edmunds Strategies for Smart Car Buyers. In 1994, the company posted on a gopher site known as the Electronic Newsstand.[5] The company launched the Edmunds.com website in 1995.[4] By 1996, the company had formed web commerce agreements with Autobytel, a site linking buyers to nearby dealers, and the auto insurance company, Geico. As part of the agreement, each time a lead was generated from the Edmunds.com website, it would get paid a fee.[6] In June 1999, the company changed its name to Edmunds.com, Inc.[4]

The company introduced True Market Value, a service that analyzed a variety of factors to offer a suggested transaction price for vehicles in 2000.[7] That same year, the company introduced simple websites for web-ready mobile phones and PDAs.[8] In 2005, Edmunds.com launched Inside Line, a free online magazine for automotive enthusiasts.[5] Inside Line delivered automotive content in the form of videos, photos, blogs, news articles, discussion boards and road tests,[9] before being discontinued in 2013. In 2010, the company launched its first mobile phone apps, 10 years after introducing its mobile website.[10][11]

In 2011, two years after launching a similar service for new vehicles, the company launched a used car inventory search tool, allowing users to compare vehicles in their market.[12] Edmunds.com launched its first ever TV advertising campaign in select markets in 2012, before expanding nationally in 2013.[13] That same year, the company announced the Edmunds Price Promise, a feature that allowed users to see the accurate price of a vehicle online and guaranteed by a local dealer.[14] In 2014, Edmunds.com acquired CarCode, a mobile messaging startup that won one of the company's Hackomotive challenges and participated in the company's accelerator program.[15][16]

In 2016, the company relocated its headquarters to the Colorado Center in Santa Monica.[17] In 2017, as part of a rebranding effort, the company officially dropped the .com from its name, unveiled a new logo, and redesigned its website to aid mobile users.[18][19]


Edmunds.com announced that it would begin hosting a Hackathon event in September 2012.[20] The event, named Hackomotive, was held in March 2013 and awarded the winners a combined $28,000. The resulting ideas were published on the Edmunds Hackomotive website and some ideas were further evaluated by the company.[21] Edmunds.com ran the Hackathon from 2013-2015 before taking a year-long break from the event.[22][23] In 2014, Edmunds.com launched Car Week, a seven-day event to connect car dealers with buyers and offering prices below the Edmunds.com True Market Value.[24][25]


The Edmunds.com Web site includes prices for new and used vehicles, dealer and inventory listings, a database of national and regional incentives and rebates, vehicle test drive reviews, and tips and advice on all aspects of car purchases and ownership. Edmunds.com provides data through its "True Market Value" pricing tools, which launched in 2000.[26] The Edmunds.com True Market Value New Vehicle Calculator displays the estimated average price consumers are paying when buying new vehicles. The Edmunds.com True Market Value Used Vehicle Appraiser estimates the actual transaction prices for used vehicles bought and sold by dealers and private parties.[27]

In 2020, Edmunds launched a partnership with CarMax that allows a driver to enter their vehicle details to get an instant, redeemable and no-obligation cash offer. It's good for seven days and can be redeemed at any CarMax location.[28]


In 1997, the Edmunds.com website earned a Webby Award in the Money category at the inaugural event.[29] The company has been ranked as one of the best places to work by The Wall Street Journal and the Los Angeles Business Journal.[30] Edmunds.com was named to Fast Company's World's Top 10 Most Innovative Companies of 2015 in Automotive.[31] In 2016, Edmunds.com was ranked 26th on Fortune's Best Small and Medium Companies list.[32]


  1. ^ Muller, David (11 September 2014). "Edmunds.com Moves to Downtown Detroit, Launches Rebuild Hart Plaza Campaign". MLive. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
  2. ^ "Edmunds.com Gives Unlimited Vacation, But Employees Treat it With Discipline". Smart Business. 31 March 2014. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
  3. ^ Vella, Matt (November 26, 2007). "Maintaining Edmunds' Edge". BusinessWeek. Archived from the original on 2007-12-06.
  4. ^ a b c Stuart, Anne (2002). "This Year's Model". Inc. Retrieved December 18, 2016.
  5. ^ a b Sviokla, John J. (1998). "Chapter 3 Marketspace Markets: Factors for Success and Failure". In Kemerer, Chris F (ed.). Information Technology and Industrial Competitiveness: How IT Shapes Competition. Norwell, Mass.: Kluwer Academic Publishers. p. 41. ISBN 0-7923-8020-7. Retrieved May 31, 2010.
  6. ^ Adelson, Andrea (28 October 1996). "Kelley Blue Book Tests the World Wide Web as a Distribution Source". The New York Times. Retrieved December 18, 2016.
  7. ^ Kisiel, Ralph (12 June 2000). "Edmunds Offers Net Prices". Automotive News. Retrieved 17 December 2016.
  8. ^ Rechtin, Mark (21 February 2000). "Edmunds Adds to its Services". Automotive News. Retrieved 17 December 2016.
  9. ^ Zimmerman, Martin (7 April 2007). "Websites Aim to Rev Traffic". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 17 December 2016.
  10. ^ Edgerton, Jerry (15 November 2010). "Mobile Apps That Help You Unlock Your Car Or Buy A New One". CBS Money Watch. Retrieved 17 December 2016.
  11. ^ Burnette, Margarette (28 December 2010). "5 Smart Phone Apps For Car Shopping". Fox Business. Retrieved 17 December 2016.
  12. ^ Gombossy, George (8 September 2011). "Edmunds.com Launches Inventory Search Tool For Used Car Shoppers". CT Watchdog. Retrieved December 18, 2016.
  13. ^ Buss, Dale (9 July 2012). "Cars On Their Minds As Edmunds Debuts 1st TV Ads". Forbes. Retrieved December 18, 2016.
  14. ^ Barkholz, David (5 June 2015). "Edmunds Launches Price Guarantee For Online Car Shoppers". Automotive News. Retrieved December 18, 2016.
  15. ^ Yang, Melissah (28 October 2014). "Edmunds.com Acquires CarCode". Los Angeles Business Journal. Retrieved December 18, 2016.
  16. ^ Schmid Stevenson, Sarah (30 October 2014). "Edmunds.com Acquires CarCode to Help Further Its Mobile Strategy". Retrieved December 18, 2016.
  17. ^ Reim, Garrett (26 July 2016). "Edmunds.com Opens Massive New Headquarters". La Business Journal. Retrieved December 18, 2016.
  18. ^ Hernandez McGavin, Stephanie. "Edmunds Ramps Up Mobile Strategy, Redesigns Site".
  19. ^ Faw, Larissa. "Edmunds Remodels Its Own Brand".
  20. ^ "Edmunds.com Plans Hackathon". 12 September 2012. Retrieved December 18, 2016.
  21. ^ Krebs, Michelle (19 March 2013). "Should Car Buying Be Like Online Dating Versus a Dental Visit". Forbes. Retrieved December 18, 2016.
  22. ^ Perry, Scott (27 March 2015). "Edmunds.com Continues To Innovate With Third Annual Hackomotive". LA Tech Digest. Retrieved December 18, 2016.
  23. ^ "Hackomotive Website". Retrieved December 18, 2016.
  24. ^ Ellingson, Annlee (10 June 2014). "Q&A: Edmunds.com CEO Avi Steinlauf Kicks Off Car Week". L.A. Biz. Retrieved December 18, 2016.
  25. ^ Tuttle, Brad (8 June 2014). "If You Hate Haggling, This Is The Week To Buy A Car". Money Magazine. Retrieved December 18, 2016.
  26. ^ "Company Profile and History". Edmunds.com. Retrieved December 7, 2016.
  27. ^ Seigel Bernard, Tara (10 February 2012). "Car Dealers Wince at a Site to End Sales Haggling". The New York Times. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
  28. ^ "Sell My Car - Sell Your Used Car Online for Cash Today | Edmunds". Edmunds.com.
  29. ^ "1st Annual Webby Awards Nominees & Winners". Webby Awards. 1997. Retrieved May 30, 2010.
  30. ^ "2015 Best Places to Work in Los Angeles". Los Angeles Business Journal.
  31. ^ "The World's Top 10 Most Innovative Companies Of 2015 In Automotive". Fast Company. February 9, 2015.
  32. ^ "Best Small & Medium Companies 2016".

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