Last week, Edmunds hosted its first ever Hackomotive — a take on hackathons — but with a twist: Hackathons have been in use for a couple decades, but they typically are used for software development. (Wikipedia has a good entry on hackathons you can read here.) Ours was much broader. The Internet has improved the experience of car shopping for consumers, but other retail categories are continuing to innovate at a rapid clip. Can you imagine how younger buyers — knowing nothing but online retailing — will react when they venture out to purchase their first vehicle?
Hackomotive was framed around the challenge to reimagine the retail shopping experience for vehicles. The idea was to get consumers, personnel from dealers, the automakers and suppliers, technologists, designers and researchers, to pick a challenge statement, observe and research, develop ideas, test, pivot, test again and present — all within 36 hours. (Our event website can be seen here.)
The event turned out to be more successful than we had hoped — which is saying a lot as we tend to be an optimistic bunch at Edmunds. I was planning on dedicating a series of posts on the event; first on the Hackomotive itself and a then a closer look at some of the teams' ideas. My friend Matt May has already written a couple great posts on the event, so rather than repeat this, I thought I would just link to his pieces.
I will be collecting my notes and looking again at the presentations later this week. Lots of great work was done and I will share this with some commentary over the next few weeks.