AD #2065 – VW Shows Signs of Life, New Simulation Tracks Dirt Build Up, Lexus to Produce Wild UX Concept

March 14th, 2017 at 11:44am

Runtime: 7:02

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- VW’s 2016 Earnings Rise
- Heavy Trucks Continue to Slide
- Renault-Nissan Create New Commercial Unit
- New Simulation Tracks Dirt Build Up
- EV Charging Stations on the Rise
- Volvo Hints at First EV
- Ford Installs Smart Kiosk at Dealership
- Lexus to Make Wild UX Concept

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23 Comments to “AD #2065 – VW Shows Signs of Life, New Simulation Tracks Dirt Build Up, Lexus to Produce Wild UX Concept”

  1. Bradley Says:

    Unless removing the “human” interaction of car service is seen a competitive advantage-I am struggling to understand why Ford cares.

    They don’t own any dealerships, what do they gain by spending R&D on a kiosk? Is the kiosk something they would charge the dealer for monthly?

  2. Bradley Says:

    OMG!! Backup camera dirt!!

    My first backup camera was on a VW TDI Wagon. I rarely had to clean the camera. This was a fixed camera, not one that moves behind the VW badge like most new ones.

    I have both a 2014 Lexus IS250 and a 2014 Toyota Corolla. I have to constantly clean the backup camera…it feels to be almost daily. Ugh!!

  3. Albemarle Says:

    I think this kiosk is a technology looking for a reason to exist.
    I can just imagine trying to type out a problem comment at an outdoor kiosk in the winter! I bet you would be forced to correct spelling, wouldn’t be sure of what category the problem fit into, and would have to redo things if you put spaces or dashes in your phone number. No thanks.
    Service needs to be fast, convenient and personal.
    This is just another nail in the coffin of the dealer. Now you don’t even have to talk to them during the most important profit generating interaction they have. That’s when relationships are cemented. Death wish.

  4. Maverick Says:

    A kiosk at the Dealership? Not for me. I already despise the fact that my vehicle gets taken “around the corner” from the service writer to an area I can’t see. I at least want windows to where I can see my vehicle being serviced while I wait.

  5. Ctech Says:

    I write this as I stand waiting for a service advisor at a Nissan dealership. It may be my frustration speaking, but the kiosk sounds like a good idea if implemented right.

  6. Bradley Says:


    The VW backup camera lens was also curved, I think that encouraged most dirt to be removed as gravity did its thing.

  7. Don B. Says:

    If Ford thinks automating the service will help, I think not. For example I needed a new sun visor for my car, the dealer ordered a headliner. This was a human to human interaction with one human being an experienced professional. I doubt there will be a box to check that noise you get when you make a left turn.

  8. BobD Says:

    I would think the dealer’s service department would hate the kiosk. How would the service “consultant” be able to hard-sale their customers on the need to perform unnecessary optional service. My last visit to the dealer I overheard such a conversation where the service person painted gloom and doom to a woman (sorry to stereotype) if she didn’t change out her cabin filter, and it was “only” $79.00 plus installation. It was like shooting fish in a barrel, as I’m 100% confident that the woman had absolutely no idea what this filter did, and was too intimidated to ask.

  9. Arcade Mike Says:

    Here is a question on the heavy truck sales decline. Has anyone compared the decline to the increase in rail? Example: Here in SC BMW had to ship their SAV’s by truck to the coast for export but now its all done by train. When Greer SC built the inland port for sea freight it was a small area with three lifts/cranes. Now it has doubled and I believe there are either five or six cranes in use now and the place is packed with sea freight containers. Could more businesses see the cost savings in rail vs semis for long distance hauling?

  10. WineGeek Says:

    The kiosk might work well for routine oil changes etc. but beyond that there needs to be a human to talk to when you have a problem that is not easily pigeon holed into a defined category.

  11. BobD Says:

    Kiosk, part 2… As others have said, what advantage is this kiosk to perform? I often call the dealer to set up service, then just drop the car off and drop my key in their drop box before they open. I do have to pick the vehicle up before they close to get the key, although there has been once or twice where they put the key under the floor mat if the pickup was after hours.

  12. pedro fernandez Says:

    I suppose that Lexus will be self driving, cause you gotta be blind to buy that eyesore.

  13. Tuck&Roll Says:

    EV charging station. Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t I see an EV CS picture the other day on ALD that had a “free” charging sign on it? Really? I have to pay for gasoline, but these people get to ride free? No tax and free energy source combined?
    It does bother me about the lack of human interaction that is creeping into our daily lives. But, then again, some of the human interaction I’ve had at OEM car service centers has not always been positive. OEMs do not want to talk to its customers for fear of instant feedback. But, my neighborhood mechanic will always talk to me.

  14. Kit Gerhart Says:

    From my experience, the part of human interaction that needs to be removed from dealers, is the the part that results in greasy smudges on the door sills, door panels, and sometimes the seats, when you take a car with an immaculate interior for an oil change. That would be harder to accomplish, though, than a system to “sign in” for an oil change.

  15. Roger T Says:

    #12 Pedro – I agree it´s an eye sore yet being ugly didn´t stop Lexus from selling their cars. All cars from Lexus have this ‘insect’ nose nowadays.

  16. Lisk Says:

    Do we really want to get rid of human interaction so badly now we need a kiosk so you don’t have to wait 5-10 minutes for your turn to explain to a human about the shudder you get when taking off? I personally want a human on the other end of my conversation. How many of us yearn for the day when you called ABC business and a human answered the phone, addressed who you needed to talk to, and got you connected. This was always done in far less time than it took to press 1 for “***”; for seven menus.

  17. Michael from Michigan Says:

    @Bradley: Of course the OEM would force the dealer to pay for a kiosk.

    My person view is based on the OEM. I would love one at the Ford and Chevy dealers where I have maintenance and warranty work done, but prefer to deal directly at the Hyundai dealer. The service department there is the first one I ever really trusted.

  18. M360 Says:

    Is it possible that Class 8 heavy truck sales are down because companies first want to see what changes are coming to big trucks in the future before they make their purchases? Technological changes are heading this way that will give big trucks better mileage and other things. Maybe that is effecting the pace of sales.

  19. MJB Says:

    I can see it now. A guy drops his keys off at the kiosk, then goes to wait in customer service. He’s an impatient fellow with no time to spare, so he’s constantly checking out the window of the service dept. to see if his car has been retrieved by a service tech. Nope! 10 minutes later, still right there where he parked it…

    See, we’ve still gotta wait. ;)

  20. Barry Rector Says:

    Could the decline in the Big Truck segment be to the uncertainty of Trump’s economic policy? Might they just be waiting for a clearer signal from Washington about regulations and tax rates for business?

  21. Kit Gerhart Says:

    20 …and the promised trade war?

  22. Eric Brunner Says:

    That dirt simulation system has me very interested. One of the big problems with hatchbacks is the constant buildup on the back window when driving in snow or dust. Consquently your rear wiper has to be used constantly. No auto manufacturer wants to devise an aero system to keep that back window clear. A long time ago a British Company (Richard Grant) offered little winglets you could clamp onto the sides of the hatch and that did a great job in directing air flow across the rear window to reduce buildup. I used it on a Mazda GLC that we had. Worked great.

  23. Bert Says:

    Ask most women whether they would rather go the dentist or take the car in for service. To often their car visits feel patronizing and confusing. I bet many would prefer the neutrality of the kiosk.