Fiat's virtual showroom

24 Jul, 2007 1:00am Dan Strong

Fancy a trip to the ultimate Fiat dealership? All you need to visit it is a computer with Internet access

Fancy a trip to the ultimate Fiat dealership? It’s located on top of the famous Lingotto test track in Turin, and the best bit about the glass-roofed sales floor is that all you need to visit it is a computer with Internet access.

That’s because, although the new showroom – with its stunning views of Turin and the Italian Alps – is expected to sell 10,000 new cars every year, it’s an entirely virtual cre­ation. You can find it online at the www.fiat.co.uk website.

Developed by Fiat UK with the help of experts at leading Internet agency AKQA, it’s being described as marking a revolution in the way the company sells its cars.

As well as featuring 360-degree renderings of each model in the Fiat range, plus full specifications and an advanced car configurator, the slick page is intended to smooth out the process of buying a new motor.

The idea is that customers will arrive at the site, choose the exact type, colour and specification of their car, then transmit these details to
a local showroom to close the deal. Test drives can be booked via the site, and there’s even a chat function so that potential customers can easily get answers to any questions.

As with a real showroom, technical help is on hand for existing owners, too, while a forum lets Fiat fans discuss the arrival of new models such as the hotly anticipated 500.

Although the new online service is focused only on British sales for the time being, Fiat’s UK managing director Giulio Salamone explained: “In future, we would like to see this website adopted right across Europe. This is only the first step.”

That could mean, in addition to Fiat, customers can expect a similar online set-up for Alfa Romeo, not to mention performance division Abarth, which in the future will be treated as a brand distinct from Fiat.

Web buyers will still need to visit a Fiat dealer to pay for and collect their order, as well as for servicing.

Extra Info

Customers will arrive at the site, choose the exact type, colour and specification of their car, then transmit these details to a local showroom to close the deal

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