Audi VR experience: the dealership in a briefcase

Audi VR experience: the dealership in a briefcase

Audi dealerships will begin to introduce a new virtual reality (VR) headset sales tool by end of 2015 in order to enhance the Audi showroom experience for customers.

The Audi VR experience gives customers the opportunity to configure their preferred car at the dealership through VR headsets and experience it in a unprecedented way. The headset showcases the entire model portfolio of Audi, including all possible equipment combinations.

By doing this Audi has now become the first automotive manufacturer to develop a dedicated retail software solution for VR headsets.

audi-virtual-reality

Luca de Meo, member of the board of management for sales and marketing at Audi, presented the Audi VR experience at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit and commented: “Hand in hand with our dealers, we are bringing digital innovations into the dealership in order to improve convenience and to provide even better advice. With the Audi VR experience, we are once again demonstrating the pioneering role of the four rings in this area.”

With the VR technology, customers and prospective buyers experience the virtual Audi world on a new level – in three dimensions, with all sound effects, and almost life‑like. They can virtually take a seat behind the wheel of their individually configured car or take a look in the trunk. A camera tracks the movements of the user’s head and the system adapts the image displayed accordingly.

The full spectrum of the Audi model range, with respective customisation options, can be called up: colours, leathers, inlays as well as infotainment systems. The dealer is thus able to show the diversity of the Audi portfolio in a convenient way and to provide individual advice to the visitor.

Audi will bring the new sales tool to first dealers by the end of this year – with particular focus on dynamic growth markets where high sales increase for Audi is being accompanied by expansion of the dealer capacity.

In future, it will also be possible to provide the Audi VR experience away from the dealership as a mobile solution – while visiting the customer at home, for example.

In use at the Audi dealer, VR headsets obtain the detailed data records for the vehicle models from a high‑performance computer that assures superior image reproduction. The Audi VR experience is also equipped with high-end headphones by Bang & Olufsen.

Audi has already been using VR in automotive sales since 2012, blending digital innovation with the strengths and services of the physical dealership, thanks to Audi City, a cyber store with a real presence, which displays the brand’s automobiles on ceiling‑height digital powerwalls on a 1:1 scale.

At Audi City, visitors are able to configure their individual car step by step. Audi City complements the brand’s sales networks in downtown locations of major cities. This year, Moscow will be joining London, Beijing and Berlin as the next Audi City location.

In addition, Audi has refined technological components of the digital showroom for use at classic dealerships. In 2014, technical modules from Audi City went into use at the first 16 European pilot dealers.

The digitisation of around 200 more locations worldwide is planned this year.​

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