Adam, a small city car, is the third of four new models Vauxhall is launching into new segments of the market in the next 12 months as part of its efforts to adapt its offering to the changing needs of UK consumers. It follows the launch of the Ampera and Mokka vehicles.
The car has been designed to offer drivers a high level of personalisation with “a million” combinations of paint work, interior fabrics and other design elements to allow drivers to create a car that suits their personality.
The campaign, which breaks on television on 4 March, uses straplines including “What’s your match” and “There’s a million possibilities”.
TV ads will be heavily supported by digital elements including an online “configurator tool” that allows customers to play with the design options and create a bespoke car.
As part of the marketing activity Vauxhall has created its first pop-up store which opens on Saturday (16 February) at Westfield Stratford shopping centre. The store is designed to show that the Adam is about style and fashion and demonstrate Vauxhall is “approachable”.
Richard Hughes, head of Vauxhall brand communications, says: “We’re seeing [Adam] as a statement of where the brand is going. It’s a model launch campaign but it has the duplicity of being a brand campaign as well to reach a mass audience. [The marketing] reflects where Vauxhall as a brand is going.”
“Adam is one articulation of the change Vauxhall is going through and it reflects the changing habits of people. People want cars that are an expression of their personality as well as practical. Adam is all about style and personality.”
Watch Richard Hughes speak about Adam at the model’s launch below.
The pop-up could be the first of a number of similar temporary brand experiences the brand launches as Vauxhall seeks new ways to engage with customers. Initiatives like the pop-up are a result of a change in the industry that Hughes says is forcing car marques to more clearly define their brands as automotive engineering becomes more standardised.
He says: “Properly defining what you are is the biggest challenge. As there is greater harmonisation in cars because of engineering, you have to better define your DNA. Adam is a perfect display of our brand DNA in terms of the brand character, cleverness and the approachability this [pop-up] store offers. We don’t want to be in a stuffy environment, we want to be very open.”
Vauxhall is the second biggest car brand in the UK and claims to be the fastest growing in terms of retail sales and Hughes says it is “closing the gap” on market leader Ford.
However, the latest sales figures from the SMMT show total Vauxhall sales, which also include the fleet division, fell 1 per cent year on year in December, compared to total market growth of 5.4 per cent.