Inside the digital showroom of the future - with no cars!

Published: 28 July 2016

► Bentley's high-tech, car-less showroom
► Partners with Sony on digital tech
► Inside the Amsterdam dealership

Bentley has launched its first car-free showroom – by using digital technology to bring its range of cars to life for customers in cramped, expensive central Amsterdam.

Naturally, most customers parting with tens of thousands of pounds (or hundreds of thousands, in Bentley's case) will want to see a car before they buy. But in high-cost metropolitan areas, Sony believes its tech will enable dealers to showcase their wares without needing the floorspace to display demonstrators.

The digital car showroom is here

Crewe is calling the 78m2 Dutch showroom 'the world's first all-digital automotive brand experience'. As you can see from the photo above, it's more like a smart sitting room than a traditional car showroom.

Interestingly, it's bolted on to the Conservatorium Hotel in central Amsterdam. But instead of serried ranks of Bentleys, there's a vast 3.5m Sony 4k display and laser projectors, operated by Xperia tablets. All of these works together to let prospective customers browse all the different options and colours. 

Bentley says it's the perfect way to show off the 1.3 billion configurations it now offers. Would you buy a car – let alone a Bentley – without touching it? Let us know in the comments below!

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Sony Xperia tablets are used by Bentley customers

By Tim Pollard

Editorial director of CAR's digital publishing arm. Motoring news magnet