When luxury automaker Audi approached Continuum in 2012, global competition in the automotive industry was on the rise. At the same time, an economic tilt toward services was impacting revenue streams for most product manufacturers.
Audi had an innovative idea that, if done well, would propel them ahead of both market trends. It would produce an entirely new source of revenue and invent a new kind of Audi customer. And it would enable Audi to tap into the service economy in a way that granted the brand a competitive edge. The idea was this: Give people access to a luxury car on-demand—not by selling them an Audi, but by sharing one.
Audi understood that developing a car-sharing offering required them to do something they’d never done before: design a complex service experience. As a brand known for exceptional engineering, such a move could have major effect, positive or negative. Audi sought our help with this brand challenge, and together we converted a whiteboard idea into a premium real-world service experience.
Research & Insights
Research & Insights
Round One: Letting the Customer Drive Design
To understand how a car-on-demand offering fit into people’s lives, our team engaged in several rounds of co-design with target users. Using illustrated scenario cards and storyboards as prompts, we asked people to construct their ideal experience.
We helped Audi to introduce a new kind of luxury automotive experience to the U.S. market in the form of Audi on demand. With this new car-sharing service, the automaker gains competitive advantage in an evolving economy and meets the needs of a new kind of customer, without compromising the strong brand identity for which they’re known and admired.
Audi on Demand launched in San Francisco in Spring 2015. Audi plans to roll out the service in other major metropolitan areas in the United States in the near future. The app is available online at the Apple Store.