Luxury car buyers may be looking for a car with lush interior, high-tech gadgets and high horsepower, but what are they looking for in a car showroom? Luxury car dealerships are taking it up a notch in their offerings, making it more than just about the test drive and paperwork. A new trend is that dealerships, like Mercedes-Benz, are adding amenities like a spa, coffee shop and more.
Because many car buyers bring their vehicles to the dealership for routine maintenance, some places are adding these VIP amenities to change the entire experience of being at an auto shop. In the past several decades luxury auto shops and car dealerships have slowly been taking it up a notch, with the introduction of free car washes and vacuuming in the 1980s. Giving patrons these kinds of added bonuses not only helped to improve business to those that offered the services but made guests feel special and not like they were coming to a grimy shop. These types of shops are located all throughout the country.
“The bar keeps getting raised,” said Herb Chambers, who owns 55 dealerships in the East Coast. “The cars are all the same, so everybody tries to have the best people and something extra.”
Because many car manufacturers have upped the ante in terms of the quality of their cars and products without the price tag, luxury dealerships are under even more pressure to offer full-service and then some. And for many dealerships it still comes down to the way they offer service to their customers.
“If we can deliver value and speed — plus the experience — and the price difference is minimal, then the client comes back for everything, which is what we want,” Bernie Moreno, a Mercedes-Benz dealer, said. “We want them to get used to coming here for anything that has to do with their car.”
Car brands take luxury outside of the car
Having a high-end car isn’t just about the vehicle, it’s about the lifestyle. Several luxury automakers, including Bentley and Hummer, have expanded their offerings to other areas of the market, including perfume and cologne, furniture, leather goods and clothing. These product lines capture the attention of high-end buyers who simply love the brands they purchase.
“Luggage, bikes, desk pieces, couture clothing — it all provides a continuation of the Porsche driving experience,” said Cristina Cheever, a spokeswoman for Porsche North America.
Carmakers are collaborating with other brands and products to make things that buyers of the specific car brand would love to have in their lifestyle. And as Cheever said, it’s about bringing that luxurious feeling of driving a car like a Porsche into other aspects of life.
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(all data current as of 7/24/2017)
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