Isobar develops mixed reality experience for General Motors International
Isobar and Carat have launched a first-of-its-kind, Mixed-Reality dealership for long-standing global client General Motors International (GMI). The mixed-reality (MR) application provides an augmented dealership experience for consumers, enabling them to virtually experience a car showroom – anywhere and anytime.
Dubbed the V-Showroom, the application merges real and virtual worlds to produce new environments and visualizations in real-time, by using an overlay of augmented content that interacts with the physical space or reality it is in.
Developed by Isobar, the mobile application showcases GMI’s all-new Chevrolet Cruze and is the first automotive brand in Asia to use MR at scale for car buyers.
Using an iPad attached with a structural depth sensor, any physical space can be scanned in real-time in order to place a 3D replica of the car, for example on a coffee table, or scaled to life-sized.
This platform pushes the boundaries of the typical augmented reality experience and aims to simplify and enhance a consumer’s experience when shopping for a car, without physically being in a showroom, especially when a dealership is too small to fit the full portfolio of car models.
With the V-Showroom tracking and mapping content over the physical environment in real-time, a consumer can be shown how the car’s inbuilt features and technologies work, creating a fully-immersive showroom experience. Potential buyers can walk around and even explore the interior of the virtual car, minus the location and size constraints of a typical car showroom.
Mark Harland, Executive Director of Marketing, Holden & General Motors International, commented: “Chevrolet has a long history of innovation in the automotive industry such as the first electrical starter and the first car radio. These technological advancements have been key to the brand evolution. But while automotive technology has evolved over the years, the car showroom experience has remained largely unchanged. We challenged Dentsu Aegis Network to create a solution that would position General Motors as an innovation leader in the automotive space. We are excited about V-Showroom and look forward to scaling this even further across other markets and with different models.”
Chye Yong Hock, Innovation Director of Isobar Singapore, said: “Through V-Showroom, prospective car buyers can experience the Chevrolet Cruze wherever they may be. Experiential tech such as VR, AR and now MR is going to play a bigger role in our daily lives, and V-Showroom allows Chevrolet to be the pioneer in this space. In particular, the use of MR here really enabled us to design a delightful and immersive sales experience that not only improves the dealership experience, but also brings the points of inspiration and transaction ever closer.”
Michael Hemmingway, Regional Business Director of Carat Asia Pacific, said: “The V-Showroom enables Chevrolet to create a fully immersive experience for its customers in a way they have never seen before. Using Gartner’s Hype Cycle, AR & VR are very much at the start of the ‘slope of enlightenment’ and it is truly exciting to see this technology kick on and merge both the offline and online worlds to meet the increasing expectations of consumers in retail.”
Launched in May this year in 110 GMI dealerships across South Korea, V-Showroom is available in multiple languages and can be localised for future implementation across more markets. As MR technology looks set to become more wide scale and accessible, consumers could be looking at a future where they could potentially download the showroom into their own homes as well as fully customise their vehicle, from alloys and trims to interiors.