After launching ‘Grand Vitara’ in Metaverse in July, India’s leading carmaker Maruti Suzuki is now set to offer all its car models on a virtual platform by the end of this season, company’s Senior Executive Director, Marketing & Sales, Shashank Srivastava said at the e4m MarTech India Conference 2022 held in Gurugram on Friday.
Delivering a special address, Srivastava said, “People usually don’t book a car without seeing it physically. Considering the technological advancement of Grand Vitara, a fuel-efficient hybrid SUV, we wanted to offer a never before experience to consumers. We decided to launch the car in a standalone NEXAverse in July which marked our entry into the phygital world. Over 55,000 people booked it just on the basis of their immersive experience in NEXAverse even before the car was physically available. Car production started in August.”
Another 10,000 people booked it later even without checking the car physically. E-booking of Vitara has crossed 17 percent of the total bookings, he added.
Srivastava announced at MarTech, “Considering the overwhelming response of consumers to NEXAverse, which is made available across devices, we have decided to roll out all car models on NEXAverse or Arenaverse with AR and VR by the end of this season.”
Consumers can also walk down to Maruti dealers’ outlets to get an immersive experience of life-size models through AR and VR. NEXAverse also allows consumers to choose their avatars.
He further noted, “Digitisation is a growing investment for the company. Going forward, NEXAverse will become our e-commerce platform to offer cars, accessories, and loyalty programs.”
Srivastava says that NEXAverse will be more personalized and have better interactive capabilities in future. “Consumers will get a virtual relationship manager as well who will guide them throughout the car buying journey just like a physical relationship manager.”
Maruti can now expand its footprint to the remotest areas of the country where the company doesn’t have showrooms, he noted.
Metaverse brings unprecedented things together
Lauding metaverse, Srivastava explained, “Although what constitutes Metaverse is yet to be fully defined, it certainly allows crucial interactions in real-time, accessible through AR and VR, just like physical interactions. Just as the internet allows us to collaborate with different people in real-time across the globe, metaverse brings unprecedented things without geographical boundaries and time zones.”
With the help of VR and haptic devices, people can virtually attend events, enjoy themselves together, shop, and even marry online. He added that people can one day also travel within different platforms through virtual tasks.
Why is the metaverse important?
Urging marketers to join Metaverse for growth, Srivastava underscored, “Consumers today are digital natives. In the future, Metaverse is envisioned to become an online global ecosystem which allows interoperability where people can travel within digital platforms along with virtual assets. This sounds very exciting and gives an enormous task to digital platforms to incorporate, integrate and execute.”
Five technologies that can make these things possible are VR devices, Edge-computing, AI, blockchain and 5G internet, Srivastava highlighted.
Describing the challenges of having a virtual platform for a wide consumer base like India, Srivastava said, “We wanted NEXAverse to be not just compatible with all devices including entry-level smartphones, but also functioning well with not so high speed of internet. Thanks to its universality, the platform has got 50,000 users today.”
The exchange4media Group curated the third edition of the MarTech India Conference themed at “Driving Digital Transformation Through MarTech”.
The best martech minds had convened to discuss topics like Metaverse, emerging martech trends, personalization, future-proofing digital marketing, leveraging customer data and social listening strategies.
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