Photo: John Muggenborg
The design language of Audi vehicles now encompasses the dealerships.
You know an Audi vehicle when you see it: from the sophisticated minimalism of the body to the iconic Singleframe® grille to the enticing interior styling—not to mention the iconic Four Rings. But really, what makes an Audi an Audi is the sum of its parts. This is also true for Audi dealerships in North America, which increasingly embody the new Audi Terminal Concept.
New York City-based firm CDR Studio Architects—led by Lea Cloud, Jon Dreyfous and Victoria Rospond—is responsible for molding what is now known as the Audi Terminal Concept to meet the varying needs of the American market, specifically spatial needs and climate considerations.
The abundance of area in the United States has shaped and defined the way that modern Americans live and consume spatially. CDR Studio Architects shared that throughout the 20th century—thanks to the development of suburbs—U.S. infrastructure progressed to include radial belts of retail that bridged the shopping gap between city centers and suburbia.
Since properties here have evolved to be built narrow and deep (versus narrow and tall like the concept was intentionally designed to fit), CDR had to tailor the native plans on nearly every level.
Taking these structural opportunities and challenges into consideration, a neutral color palette and vast windows were chosen to help draw attention to the showroom from various vantage points. The outer look is bold, energetic and not cluttered with superfluous ornamentation. Each element provides an even greater—sometimes ambiguous—function. For example, the perforated cladding doubles as a rain screen, allowing water to wick and drain down the side of the building. This helps the windows to remain clear and for the vehicles on the other side of the glass to retain focus.
Within the walls
Photo: John Muggenborg
Because Americans are often inundated with information, CDR Studio Architects said the overarching task was to create edited spaces that focus on the customer experience holistically. The furniture, lighting and finishes were carefully chosen to seamlessly meet the needs of specific zones. The entire space is logistically supportive and visually inviting for customers and employees alike, helping facilitate positive experiences across all operations.
When you walk into an Audi dealership, we want you to feel like you are in a second home. This is achieved with interior styling that is fully contemporary without sacrificing cozy details. In all areas of the showroom, you will find ample plush spaces, a surplus of outlets and café areas perfectly suited for reading, relaxation or business. Even the service bays are full of personal touches and luxurious accommodations, proving that we are proud to take care of our customers and their vehicles the entire duration of their stay at an Audi dealership.
“Audi dealerships have evolved from transaction-centered facilities to lifestyle-focused spaces.”
In recent years, Audi has moved toward a goal of a significantly electrified portfolio—starting with the plug-in electric hybrid Audi A3 Sportback e-tron. Dealers are gearing up for this shift, and the architecture was tasked to accommodate. There will be ample dedicated charging stations, so Audi e-vehicle owners can get in and then get on the road more quickly than charging at home.
Electrification isn’t the only area we’ve charged up with our new architecture—we’ve given Audi Sport® some serious real estate. Whether you’re a race fan or simply appreciate the correlation between the road and track, its connection is easily apparent throughout the terminal. “Architecturally, the Audi Terminal is a spatial prototype that visually asserts Audi racing legacy through iconic racetrack imagery,” Cloud said.
But racing and the dynamic curved wall—that mimics the turns on a track—isn’t all there is to a sportier presence. The Audi Sport® area will be the place to experience the incredible design and performance powerhouses that are Audi R and RS vehicles. This will become a critical component to Audi dealerships in the near future as more Audi Sport® models come into production.
In case you prefer to live your life in a slower lane, the terminal offers plenty of amenities for relaxation and community engagement, including outdoor lounge areas. “Audi dealerships have evolved from transaction-centered facilities to lifestyle-focused spaces to bring together Audi communities,” Cloud said.
Behind the scenes
More than a decade ago, Audi AG in Germany decided to start updating the look and feel of Audi dealerships worldwide. The goal: Create structures that are modern, timeless and deeply rooted in progressive thinking and functionality. Munich-based firm Allmann Sattler Wappner Architects began designing a prototype to fit the real estate constraints of metropolitan markets while remaining flexible enough for customization and expansion beyond cityscapes.
In 2007, Allmann Sattler Wappner Architects presented this prototype to architects from all over the world. The plan was to let approved regional firms take over the adaptation of this concept to suit the needs of specific markets.
One of the tasks of customizing an Audi Terminal Concept is helping solve daily dealership operation issues. Lea Cloud from CDR said her experience shows that customers expect the availability of instantaneous transaction. So, dealership operations need to be fluid and seamless, allowing for an integrated rapid handover of vehicles, whether in purchasing or service.
To add another layer of engagement, merchandise from Audi collection and Audi Genuine Accessories is peppered throughout the dealership. This supplements the holistic brand experience we’ve created for our customers in the Sales and Parts and Service departments.
The credentials of these incredible new spaces is extensive, and some things are better seen than said. We invite you to explore your neighborhood Audi dealership when you purchase or lease a new or Certified pre-owned Audi vehicle or visit one to service your car.