'I Came for the Men's Briefs, But I Stayed for the Tesla Model X'
Sometimes, a consumer just wants to know what electric vehicle pairs well with their wrinkle-free straight leg Chinos.
Nordstrom shoppers at The Grove shopping mall in Los Angeles can breathe a sigh of relief come Saturday, when Tesla Motors plans to open a ‘gallery’ retail location inside the upscale store.
Let’s hope they swap the Model S P90D for a 60 kWh model on discount days.
If everything goes well, the pilot project (a brainchild of Ganesh Srivats, Tesla vice-president for North American sales) could spread to other stores continent-wide. Nordstrom, which Srivats once worked for, has 121 stores in the U.S. and Canada, which would give the automaker a big boost in exposure and footprint.
While mulling new ways of targeting Tesla’s clientele, Srivats thought of his old employer. “[We’re] bringing Nordstrom customers a Tesla experience, and I think for Nordstrom as well,” he told Fast Company.
The location inside The Grove occupies a 400 square foot section of the store. Shoppers can check out color combinations and take a test drive with a Tesla employee, though if they actually spring for a vehicle, they’ll be connected with a sales associate and sent to a retail location five miles away.
Time will tell if the venture pans out for Tesla, which is feverishly preparing to ramp up production in advance of the much-ordered, never-driven Model 3. A source close to Tesla recently revealed the automaker is one-fifth of the way to its 2018 production target of 500,000 vehicles a year.
[Source: Elektrek] [Image: Tesla Motors]
The Model S and the Model X need to start in the $60,000-$70,000 range. But until that range includes: Nav screen, moonroof and heated/cooled seats - no thanks. The only ones I'd lease for my UBER anyway.
In this case, I would say that this probably does more for Nordstrom than it does for Tesla. Traditional department stores are getting clobbered by the internet, and those retailers are going to need to get creative in order to make their stores more entertaining. I would expect to see more of this kind of thing, and not just involving cars.
Nordstrom isn't as vulnerable to 'web' because they deal with the higher end and push the experience, along with a decent amount of exclusives and/or Nordy house brands that rival the name stuff. Their folks still have time to shop and will drop money for good products correctly presented. The retail polar opposite of Walmart. The mall that has this had a Tesla store for a little while, same bright lights and Teak as the faux yachting clothes store. The local M/B, Cadillac and Infiniti dealers leave a variety of cars in each "hub" area..you are marketing to the 100k plus minimum household income folks, so Nordstrom and Tesla are serving the same customer base. I'd love to know the financial arrangements made for the advertising of the cars...what does it cost to park an S class in the forecourt next to the Apple Store ? Since The Nord is already in the demographically correct Mall, it has self selected already for Tesla, this is a perfect hook up. Nord has to make sure that, like any high cost provider facing an upstart, that they basically provide a pad with electricity and have a per unit commission.
I remember seeing Fords in department stores, usually rented space by a local dealer. They'd have a "sales Associate" there for a couple hours to parcel out the glossy pamphlets to adults only. They'd even help you fill out a form for the options you want, to bring to the dealership. You would have to order the car for that options package, and the salesman there would use the form to look on the lot for something reasonably close in options/color, and try to sell you that instead. The "Tesla Experience" is completely different and revolutionary, of course.