It all starts at the touch of the silver start/stop button. The number “90” appears on the LED display of the matt black cube. The countdown is on. Because precisely 90 minutes later, an Audi dealer drops off the new Audi A8 for a test drive.
Behind the 11x11x11-centimetre cube, the so-called Test Drive Cube, lies a complex logistics system. After all, the Audi A8 must be delivered to the customer for a test drive exactly 90 minutes after the start/stop button on the top of the cube has been pushed. “And that doesn’t mean 87 or 93 minutes later – but exactly 90 minutes later”, stressed Sascha Scholz, who manages the project for Interactive Marketing Communications at Audi.
To ensure that everything runs smoothly, there is a clearly defined procedure: The customer pushes the button to trigger the countdown, which is shown on an LED display. Integrated GPS and GSM transmitters enable Audi to track the location of the Test Drive Cube and deliver the Audi A8 on time, together with a personalised letter. Customers then have 24 hours to take an extended test drive.
In the Netherlands, 44 customers have already received a Test Drive Cube. Daniel Schepers, Marketing Adviser for the Netherlands, is delighted: “Our team has done an excellent job coping with the challenges on the ground. We were very well prepared and had strategically distributed the relevant cars among the dealers. Nevertheless, things naturally got pretty hectic from time to time.”
The results after the first few weeks are impressive. Feedback from customers is extremely positive. They enjoy taking the Audi A8 for an exclusive test drive – and that’s not all: Some customers have wasted no time in buying the flagship vehicle. Following this remarkably good response, the campaign will be conducted in other markets in 2014.