Imagination produces immersive virtual for Ford Explorer launch

Global experience design company, Imagination, has created a world-first driving experience for the launch of Ford’s new all-electric Explorer™ SUV; Ford’s first volume passenger electric car designed and built in Europe.

Imagination has flipped the traditional in-person car reveal on its head and produced an immersive virtual event for the unveiling of Ford’s new electric vehicle. Powered by the gaming platform Unreal Engine, the event harnesses cutting-edge pixel streaming technology that will allow users to interact with the car in a hyperreal digital environment without the need for owning high-powered hardware. It will be the first-ever pixel-streamed experience of its kind and will set a new standard for future reveals in the automotive sector, where audiences can enjoy fully immersive experiences from the comfort of their own home.

The launch of the new all-electric Ford Explorer™ SUV took place in three stages. The first part kicked off with a seven-minute virtual reveal of the new car on 21 March 2023 live on LinkedIn, featuring state-of-the-art photoreal CGI content starring Lexie Alford aka Lexie Limitless – the youngest person to travel to every country in the world. Viewers saw the car build itself around her, highlighting innovative features designed to reinvent exploring in the modern age.

View the new all-electric Ford Explorer™ SUV virtual reveal film here.

Viewers will then be asked to get behind the wheel themselves in an immersive Virtual Test Drive, which will blur the lines between reality and virtual reality, offering consumers the opportunity to get to know the car through interactive participation.

Experience the virtual test drive experience here on desktop or mobile.

Following the online reveal, Imagination will generate content to be shared across Ford’s social channels that will capture the momentum from the launch and encourage people to visit the Ford website to make reservations. A virtual test drive will also be made available as an extension of the launch, allowing the general public to experience the car digitally and learn about its unique design features across three unique environments. It will be the world’s biggest-ever automotive launch using new pixel streaming technology.

The experience’s goal is to present Ford at the forefront of electrification and to inspire and build excitement for its re-defined brand in Europe.

James Keane, Creative Director, Imagination, said: “When we were asked to support the reveal of the new all-electric Explorer™ SUV, we knew we had to deliver something that hasn’t been done before, and at scale, in order to create a lasting impact. Our digital launch has demonstrated Ford’s vision for the industry and resonates with its European brand narrative. It’s a brand-defining moment for Ford, and we look forward to continuing working together.”

Peter Zillig, Marketing Director, Ford in Europe, said: “The reveal of the new electric Explorer™ SUV is a milestone moment in our journey to an all-electric future in Europe, featuring cutting-edge Hollywood-style CGI and a pixel-streamed virtual test drive. It is a one-of-a-kind opportunity for us to create meaningful connections with potential customers.”

Imagination partnered with Digital Salmon, experts in Unreal experiences to complete this launch.


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