Audi deploys VR into dealerships

Audi dealers in Germany, Spain and the UK will be offering potential customers the chance to experience what an individually configured will look like using VR.

The move represents the first, fully functional VR application for customer consultations at dealerships in the automotive industry.

This application of the technology is likely to make waves across any industry where customers need to improve a product before it is actually created, such as interior design. Audi is paving the way when it comes to digital innovation in customer experience, with the VR experience integrated into the company’s IT systems.

For the first time, dealers will be able to show customers the entire Audi product range and all of the extra equipment options (of which the company says there are hundreds of millions of potential variations0 during the initial customer consultation. The VR experience will be an addition to the over 400 digitalised consulting suites already in operation.

Getting a complete picture

Audi has partnered with Oculus for the project, meaning that customers will be using Oculus Rift headsets during the experience. The data processing and visualisation is being handled by Zerolight, who have developed a high-performance graphics engine for the project.

The experience will allow customers to get a complete picture of what they are buying before they even agree to the purchase. With full a full 360, 3D environment, complete with light and sound effects, customers can even use ‘x-ray vision’ to check out the internal mechanics of the vehicle.

“With the VR experience, we have developed a fully-fledged sales tool for Audi dealers. It offers our customers more information and certainty when making their purchasing decision, as well as a special excitement factor,” said Nils Wollny, head of digital business strategy and customer experience at AUDI AG.

“With this, we are taking the next step in our strategy to combine digital innovation with the strengths of the bricks-and-mortar dealership.”

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