Land Rover Vietnam builds desirability in luxury

By Tien Hoa   December 6, 2023 | 01:00 am PT
Land Rover Vietnam has implemented a new strategy to enhance client experience, its General Manager Ruud Poels said at the JLR Retailer Hanoi launch of its first global standard retail destination on Nov. 23.
Ruud Poels, General Director of Land Rover Vietnam. Photo courtesy of Phu Thai Mobility

Ruud Poels, General Manager of Land Rover Vietnam. Photo courtesy of Phu Thai Mobility

As Vietnam's auto market sales has recorded a significant decrease compared to last year, how do you assess Jaguar Land Rover's business situation in Vietnam?

As an active player in the automotive industry in Vietnam, we did notice a market cooldown after a period of high growth following Covid-19. However, 2023 so far for Land Rover has been a year of exciting developments.

Product-wise, we launched the Defender 130 and the new Range Rover Sport, thereby updating our popular Defender and Range Rover brands. We are also delighted that our retailers have been busy in the last 11 months fulfilling deliveries of the new Range Rover for pre-ordering clients and more.

And we are fully focused on the new global Modern Luxury vision by JLR; the first and probably biggest physical result of which you are seeing here is our new JLR Retailer Hanoi, which took 18 months to finish. This is the first of its kind, not just in Vietnam but in the whole world, for JLR.

I think that’s the strongest proof that Land Rover is performing well in Vietnam, and that we have confidence in the market despite the past slowdown.

What solutions have you come up with to adapt to this situation?

We did not wait for the market to show slowing signs to implement meaningful and exciting changes. We have been prioritizing customer experience design for sustainable development in Vietnam.

Apart from the Global Pilot Store in Hanoi, behind the scenes, there is a lot more happening with regards to team training and facilitating processes to ensure our retailers will be fully ready to offer Modern Luxury client journey, that is retail as an experience.

It will be inspirational, exclusive, and tailored to suit our clients’ needs to make them feel unique. It will be positively memorable at every touchpoint, building emotions in our Range Rover, Defender, and Discovery brands.

For marketing, we are also transforming how we present ourselves as a House of Brands on all channels and building desirability toward our clients, whether it be their virtual or physical appearance. The after-sales experience is also obviously elevated with this new facility.

Overall, we put in efforts to transform the client journey to be human-centered and emotionally engaging throughout the business. We have seen client engagement warming up and resulting in revenue recently, which is a welcome indicator that we are heading in the right direction.

The customer experience is at the core of the Land Rover Display Space. Photo courtesy of Phu Thai Mobility

The customer experience is at the core of the JLR Retailer Hanoi. Photo courtesy of Phu Thai Mobility

Which customer segment is Land Rover Vietnam targeting?

Under the House of Brands approach with JLR, all three of our brands, including Range Rover, Defender, and Discovery, will be uniquely characterized, and clearly differentiated.

Range Rover is refined for the leaders of life whose leadership leaves a legacy for others to follow; Defender is capable and durable for those who embrace the impossible in their adventures; and Discovery allows people to get out and explore together.

What would be the main factors that convince Vietnamese people to buy and use Land Rover cars?

At Land Rover, we offer luxury, as an experience throughout sales and aftersales. It is an inspirational and emotionally engaging experience.

We have the ability to personalize our products to our clients’ own specific needs and preferences. That’s not limited to the vehicles but applies to the whole journey that clients will have with us, from the first time they interact with our team, for example, to when we actually meet our clients at the showroom, to vehicle collection, vehicle repair, and further.

We are transforming and reshaping our business to embody the cutting-edge Modern Luxury vision. To build a loyal relationship with our clients, we need to anticipate their evolving needs and proactively provide solutions based on our expertise and commitment. It would be an exclusive and unique experience. That’s how we would love to build desirability.

When it comes to the vehicles, we pride ourselves on the craftsmanship that’s present inside and out of them. Take the Range Rover SV, for example. That could very well be the first car in which you can find ceramics as a material for the exterior and interior. That kind of innovation cements its place as the original luxury SUV ever by constantly exploring new ideas to express modern luxury.

Or if you are interested in the iconic Defender, you will appreciate its 75-year heritage of adventures and rescue missions all around the world, and the current generation is the culmination of all that in terms of off-road expertise.

The area displays exterior and interior materials, allowing customers to customize their Land Rover cars. Photo courtesy of Phu Thai Mobility

The area that displays exterior and interior materials, allowing customers to customize their Land Rover cars. Photo courtesy of Phu Thai Mobility

How do you assess the current trend of electric vehicles, and what are the objectives of Phu Thai Mobility in this field in Vietnam?

We are excited by EV development in Vietnam. The goal of Land Rover Vietnam undoubtedly aligns with the global strategy and BEV development roadmap of JLR. As shared previously by JLR, you can expect the global debut of the Range Rover BEV in 2024; a Vietnam launch could follow that, depending on production capability and logistics. We know that there is high desirability for the car globally, and we look forward to having it here for pioneering Vietnamese clients.

Meanwhile, we are fully prepared to take on BEVs ahead of the first Land Rover BEV. You can find DC and AC chargers at our workshops and retailers. Our technicians are also trained by JLR to work on BEVs with special tooling.

What are your predictions and expectations for Land Rover in Vietnam over the coming decade?

With Modern Luxury approach in place, we are in the middle of transforming our business from end to end. The new JLR Retailer Hanoi is the first proof of that, after which you will see many more, from products and services offered to clients to how we have become more than a single brand in the automotive market.

I think JLR sums it up perfectly about what we ultimately want to become: the creator of the world’s most desirable modern luxury automotive brands for the most discerning of clients.

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