SignonSanDiego, the online home of The San Diego Union-Tribune, is the first, but will not be the only, AutoTrader.com move into newspaper partnerships beyond its owner Cox Enterprises’ newspaper and radio sites.

“We launched with the U-T early this month, and will announce several others soon,” AutoTrader.com’s Mark Scott told AIM Group. While he didn’t share details, and declined to talk about the business model, he did suggest an arrangement similar to the 2008 partnership with Cox Newspapers and the August, 2009 partnership with Cox Media Group’s 73 radio stations. In both those agreements visitors to the autos sections of the newspaper or radio stations’ Web sites see a new custom autos channel powered by AutoTrader.com.  The co-branded autos channel includes auto inventory search functionality and automotive research and comparison content.  The news links and advertising displays are controlled by the newspapers and radio stations.

In the case of Atlanta Journal-Constitution, for example, under terms of the agreement with the AJC, visitors to the AJC’s auto’s section, formerly known as AJCcars.com, are now redirected to AutoTrader.com, where readers access local and national inventory of vehicles for sale, as well as AutoTrader.com’s automotive content, research & compare functionality, consumer reviews and more.

We looked at the SignOnSanDiego.com home page, with the newly-launched AutoTrader.com partnership. Its transition from Adicio Motors to AutoTrader.com includes co-branding, with an AutoTrader.com link top and bottom on the home page.

We’ll update as new information becomes available. The Union-Tribune was not available before post deadline.

 

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