Although shopping online is hardly a new concept, purchasing a t-shirt or buying a new pillow is definitely a different experience than searching for your next car via a web search. In 2017, Jaguar/Landrover partnered with experts in 3D virtual scanning, 3D Real Tour, to change that by introducing digital twins of their showrooms.
They first started with one of the most popular Jaguar/Landrover dealerships in South Africa. Since then, 3D Real Tour has scanned many of the multinational automotive company’s showrooms across the country’s major cities.
By interacting with a digital twin, consumers are able to take their time to explore each of their options as well as space around the dealership. When they’ve narrowed down their selection or found the model they’d like to purchase, they can visit for an in-person experience before they make the final purchase. Although this project started over four years ago, the digital twins have become an invaluable tool for Jaguar/Landrover after having to close several dealerships following the outbreak of COVID-19.
We recently caught up with owner and founder of 3D Real Tour, Pierre Erasmus, to learn more about the process of turning these luxury showrooms into an immersive, virtual experience, as well as the future potential for these tools.
Q: What inspired the 3D capture of the Jaguar/Landrover showroom?
We decided in 2017 to explore the motor vehicle market in South Africa with Matterport. After we did one showroom for Jaguar/Landrover, they were so impressed they asked us to film all their dealerships in the major cities all across South Africa.
Q: What are the must-sees you want visitors to explore, and why?
The idea was to look at the different models on the floor and the facilities like the waiting room, barista bar and other spaces across each property. Some of the dealerships even insisted that we had to film their workshops to show the visitors how clean and professional it is. Our goal is to urge visitors to drive to the dealership and purchase a vehicle.
Q: What are the advantages of a 3D tour of the space compared to an in-person visit?
The most significant advantage was that the potential buyers could walk through the showroom and workshops from the comfort of their homes. They could decide, as a family, which vehicle they were interested in without a salesperson interrupting their thought process.
Q: What is your favorite vehicle in the showroom?
Personally, my favorite vehicle is the Jaguar F-type. I think that COVID-19 created the ideal platform for all motor dealerships to start deploying virtual showrooms. The world has changed, and we all need to adjust to it. I am proud to say that in 2017, 3D Real Tour already had the insight to explore virtual vehicle dealerships. In 2021, in our current environment, the potential is endless.
I think that COVID-19 created the ideal platform for all motor dealerships to start deploying virtual showrooms. The world has changed, and we all need to adjust to it. I am proud to say that in 2017, 3D Real Tour already had the insight to explore virtual vehicle dealerships. In 2021, in our current environment, the potential is endless.