Despite evidence of app fatigue, Auto is one of the most active categories in developing mobile and tablet apps. Of 42 brands in L2’s Digital IQ Index: Auto, Lamborghini and Lotus are the only two that have not yet built a mobile app. Bentley, Bugatti, Maserati, and Rolls Royce are the only brands with an iPhone app and no Android app. And Buick, Lincoln and Tesla are the only brands without an iPad app.
Unlike in other categories with high app investment (Fashion, Beauty, Watches & Jewelry), the Auto category’s investment in the apps is justified. The apps are highly visible; 70% or more receive customer feedback and over half earn a 3.5 star rating or higher.
What types of apps should Auto brands invest in? A look at the top five mobile apps reveals the popularity of games, lifestyle and catalog apps, but those with a gamification element hold the top two spots. Hyundai’s “The Walking Dead Chop Shop” (top spot with 623 reviews) built on the popularity of The Walking Dead show to ask users to build their own Zombie survival machine. Volkswagen’s Sports Car Challenge 2 built on the 12+ million downloads of the original version to create a game that conveys a more realistic experience, or one closer to driving a Volkswagen.