Mitsubishi Motors in the UK has unveiled its first-ever store in a mall setting with a concept designed by us and in partnership with online auto retail specialist Rockar.
This stand-out retail experience at intu Lakeside (Essex, UK) distills the brand’s honest, enduring, quietly confident appeal in a leisure setting. A new customer base – in particular, a younger female demographic, who represent 70% of intu Lakeside shoppers – is now poised to discover the world of Mitsubishi Motors.
Conceived as a tranquil ‘Innovation Sanctuary’, the store concept instills the calm and quiet of a hybrid vehicle, with subtle digital features enhancing the experience. It encourages slow-paced exploration around the benefits of owning a Mitsubishi, the company’s 100-year heritage and relatable owner stories. Honest, natural materials such as clay render and untreated timber, natural greenery and raw textures excite the senses and bring the outdoors in, while clear, considered messaging focuses on customer benefits and a strong service message: ‘Small enough to care’.
The streamlined customer journey begins with an open shop front, complete with low-key branding and welcoming messaging to attract passers-by. This leads to the storytelling and browse zone – an inviting, relaxing space with soft lighting, hanging plants and easy-to-read analogue messaging. Projected graphics help to communicate technical innovations, such as the lifestyle benefits of hybrid technology and any perceived barriers (e.g. “What happens when I run out of battery?”).
Mitsubishi Motors in the UK’s range of seven vehicle types is highlighted by displaying die-cast printed models along with information cards that unlock digital content when scanned at touch points. Customers may also explore personalisation options on sample boards and find local charging points on an interactive map. A tangible takeaway is provided in the form of small cards with QR codes, which unlock key information about the product and re-start customers’ purchase journey at any time, allowing them to move seamlessly between the retail store, Buy Online facility and the dealer showroom.
The final display zone showcases Mitsubishi’s leading plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) model, the Outlander PHEV, with a dramatic backdrop of black and grey walls, exposed ceilings and bolder digital storytelling setting it apart. A consultation room at the rear of the store is furnished with domestic design for a comfortable, intimate space in which to have more in-depth discussions about a purchase. Potential customers can also test drive different models from a dedicated unit in intu Lakeside’s car park, a short walk away.
Our design captures the essence of Mitsubishi Motors as an ‘exclusively inclusive’ alternative brand with innovation and credibility at its core, creating vehicles with an active lifestyle appeal. Meanwhile, Rockar has swiftly transformed the automotive retail market with its seamless omnichannel shopping process, accessible locations and relaxed, commission-free service style. After launching an online portal together in late 2017, the Mitsubishi Motors store completes the next-generation vehicle buying experience.