Citroen India will launch its first car, the C5 Aircross, by mid-2020. But, it’s not just going to debut with a unique looking car. The company is also looking to redefine the retail experience in the country. And it says that it will do so with the La Maison Citroen concept.
La Maison in French translates into ‘the home’. And so, instead of using glass and metal, and black and grey colours – things that one associates with upmarket work places - all La Maison Citroen outlets will use wood and carpeting, along with light hues. Orange will be used liberally as well, to essentially brighten things up.
Citroen is also clear it wants to make a profitable and sustainable business model for its dealers. And so, the outlets will be configured depending on the market, the area, and possible business potential.
In urban centres, where space is at a premium, Citroen may have showrooms as small as 150 square metre. This would mean display space for two cars, one interactive screen, and smaller dealer staff. But, Citroen claims, the small size won’t result in a poor consumer experience. In fact, in the 17 La Maison outlets Citroen currently has, the consumer satisfaction levels have climbed hugely. And that’s exactly what Citroen expects will happen in India.
However, if there’s more space at hand, the dealerships can be bigger. They will have the same floor to roof wood panelling, the same huge screens, the same carpeting, and the same warm and cosy feeling. But, there will be more interactive touchscreen systems. And, of course, more display models.
But, the party trick for Citroen outlets in India will be the use of technology. There’s a concept called the Citroen Wall. It essentially uses a large touchscreen system which is projected on a large wall-mounted screen; the screen could be as large as 95cm in some cases.
For walk-in customers, the wall is a way to learn more about the car they are interested in. From specs to trims to what the interior of the car looks like, all can be experienced through this setup. The Wall also allows the buyer to configure the car. It allows them to choose different designs for alloy wheels and interior colours and seat fabric, and then see what it looks like on the big screen.
If they like what they see, but still want to work on it later, they can register with Citroen, which saves their setup. And then they can continue to work on it anytime, anywhere, on any device, and with any content. Citroen calls this ATAWADAC. This also holds true the other way round. Which is, if one begins configuring their car on their time and device, they can restart their journey from that very point when they walk into the dealership. That’s if they have registered, of course.