Yes, this is really a thing.
The way in which we buy new vehicles today is very different than it was only a decade or so ago. You don't even have to step foot in a dealership if you don't want to anymore. But what if you want to go for a test drive, surely you need to go to the dealership first? Well, not anymore. Mini has just announced a new collaboration with Twitter starting October 30 until November 30 in San Francisco and Los Angeles, California only (for now). How does it work? Well, it's called "Tweet to Test Drive." The title is a dead giveaway.
Potential Mini customers in either of those two cities can arrange to test drive a new Countryman or Countryman plug-in hybrid by Tweeting #MINIonDemand to @MINIUSA. The vehicle will be delivered to their home or office for a 30-minute test drive.
Once the Tweet has been sent, customers will receive a link to enter their delivery information and schedule an exact time. Just submit and that's it. Basically, the dealership is coming to you and instead of you going there. It's still a test program, as you can tell. If successful enough in those two cities, chances are Mini will decide to roll it out to additional markets.
But why are only the Countryman and the Countryman PHEV being made available for this particular offer? Because they're crossovers, that's why. Compact hatchbacks and convertibles are not especially popular in the US, so Mini has a lot at stake in increasing sales of its only crossover.
"Every day, consumers Tweet about brands they are passionate about, and we are thrilled to see how Mini is responding with a new program like 'Tweet to Test Drive," said Rob Pietsch, Managing Director of Tech, Auto and Telco for Twitter. "This type of creative execution is powerful not only in driving conversation among influential consumers but it also brings the dealership straight to their front door in an incredibly innovative way."
Consumers simply want an easy and hassle-free car-buying experience, and Mini figures it's worth a shot to start that process with the test drive itself.