Automotive Flagships Update
Shrewd auto brands are reimagining their showrooms as lifestyle-oriented retail hubs to engage a new generation of car buyers, and/or reintroduce existing consumers to a rebooted brand ethos.
- Leveraging Lifestyle - Cadillac's Dealership Without Cars: Now 126 years old, US car brand Cadillac is bidding to redefine the urban dealership with a new NYC space – Cadillac House – that ditches the traditional hard sell in favour of conveying its relevance as a lifestyle brand. There are no cars for sale – only current and vintage models used for contextual visual merchandising purposes. The 12,000 sq ft space also features a café, art gallery and a lifestyle boutique stocked with clothing from US fashion retailer Timo Weiland.
- Aston Martin's Collab-Centric Lifestyle Boutique: British heritage car brand Aston Martin has unveiled its first 'brand experience' boutique in London's Mayfair, showcasing product spin-offs and brand collaborations. These include partnerships with British menswear label Hackett London, Netherlands-based yacht specialists Quintessence Yachts and Venetian luxury linen brand Emilia Burano. The most notable features of the store – designed by Marek Reichman, who oversaw the design of the Aston Martin DB10 concept car used in the James Bond film Spectre – are a bespoke mosaic oak floor and an adaptable 'starry night' lighting installation. The space will also be used for events such as design masterclasses, art exhibitions and dinners.
- Bugatti Goes for Auto + Home: French luxury car brand Bugatti has reopened its London showroom after refurbishment with furniture from the brand's newly launched home collection, including armchairs made from fine leather and blue carbon fibre – the same materials used in its auto interiors. It also boasts three wall-mounted digital screens displaying branded content such as videos and animations. It's currently the only place in the UK where fans can see/order the new £1.9m ($2.48m) Bugatti Chiron sports car model.
- Genesis Studio – New Brand Launch: South Korean automaker Hyundai Motor Group's premium brand Genesis is opening its first standalone showroom in Seoul. An architecturally serious combination of concrete and rusted steel, the concept has been devised to 'premiumise' the brand's image (differentiating it from Hyundai's standard showrooms) and will host a series of art and music events, as well as culinary experiences.