“Alexa, how do I turn on the massage feature?” Volkswagen introduces interactive test-drives
January 18, 2023 | By Matt Miller, Sr. Copywriter
From intelligent driver-assistance systems to touch-screen displays and even massaging seats, vehicles today are equipped with a myriad of new features for car shoppers to explore. That’s what makes the test-drive so important—customers want to hit the road and get acquainted with a new model before making a purchase. To help make the car-buying process easier, Volkswagen has introduced a new program, Test Drive With Alexa, that allows shoppers to take the all-electric Volkswagen ID.4 SUV for an interactive ride.
Since the program launched in September, customers in select regions have been able to schedule in-person, Alexa-guided test-drives of Volkswagen’s ID.4 SUV. Following a brief tour of the vehicle with a Volkswagen product specialist, participants can embark on a real-world test-drive with Amazon Alexa as their companion. The Alexa experience is enabled through an Echo Auto device on the vehicle’s dashboard.
As participants get a feel for the ID.4’s drivability, they can ask Alexa for more information on the many functions of the electric vehicle (EV). For example, a question about the car’s available massaging seats will prompt a response of: “The seat massage function is available in the front seats of the I.D.4 Pro S and Pro S with Gradient. If you’d like to try it, just say, ‘Alexa, let me try the massage feature.’” Alexa is able to share information about the ID.4’s features, including its battery, charging, blind spot monitor, infotainment, cost, regular maintenance, and much more.
Through the Test Drive With Alexa program—created in collaboration with the Amazon Ads Brand Innovation Lab and Amazon Web Services—a participant’s questions are answered in a fresh, fun manner as Volkswagen continues their goal of EV education and democratization. “From the customer’s viewpoint, they now can test-drive a Volkswagen, getting the information they need without a salesperson in the car,” said Michael Lowenstern, creative director of the Amazon Ads Brand Innovation Lab. “VW gets credit for solving a frequent customer pain point and the direct benefit of having that same customer experience their latest vehicle; it’s a win-win.”
“In our push to bring EVs and electromobility to all, we need to find new and exciting ways to talk to our customers,” said Andrew Savvas, chief sales and marketing officer at Volkswagen Group of America. “This collaboration with Amazon does just that. Future Volkswagen owners can experience all our ID.4 has to offer with the aid of a voice they’ve already come to know.”
Volkswagen and the Amazon Ads Brand Innovation Lab have created a custom landing page where participants can sign up for a Test Drive With Alexa, and configure their own ID.4. Test-drives last approximately 30 minutes, and customers should budget about 45 minutes for the entire experience. After the test-drive, customers can head to their participating Volkswagen dealership to receive additional information on how to reserve their ID.4.