Virtual Reality Takes New York Auto Show


Today marked the first day of the New York Auto Show (April 1 – 12) and attendees and press were greeted with virtual reality experiences from Toyota, Lexus, and Chrysler.

Integrating virtual reality into experiential marketing, especially around tent-pole events like the New York Auto Show, continues to get the attention it deserves from creative agencies and brands alike. Toyota, Lexus, and Chrysler integrated the Oculus Rift into elaborate installations at the show, with immersive experiences that were both informative and entertaining at the same time.

Although all the experiences from the three auto manufacturers have been seen in some shape or form at other auto shows in the past, it was great to see all the experiences being showed off on the show floor at one of the biggest auto shows of the year.

Toyota’s TeenDrive365 Distracted Driving Simulator put you behind the wheel of a Corolla while connected to an Oculus Rift. The head-mounted display provided a realistic simulation of how everyday behaviors can affect your ability to drive safely. Toyota’s latest experience aligns with Distracted Driving Month (April) and is a powerful tool to teach drivers about distractions.

Lexus showed of their RC F Rift, as it has been called, which is very reminiscent of arcade driving games. A single participant sits behind an actual RC F steering wheel, foot pedals, and strap on the Oculus Rift headset for the driving simulation experience. They can take a virtual drive on some of the world’s most famous racetracks like the Fuji Speedway.


Across the show floor, Chrysler used the Oculus Rift DK2 to take attendees on a virtual tour of its factory floor in Sterling Heights, Michigan. Attendees sit inside an actual 2015 Chrysler 200C, place the headset on, and are taken on an audiovisual tour of the car and the state-­of-­the-­art facilities that make such a vehicle possible.

Wieden+Kennedy Portland partnered with Stopp and MPC Creative to help deliver a “first-of-its-kind interactive, photo­real virtual reality experience”. Unreal Engine 4 enabled real­time rendering of the scene stereoscopically at 75 fps and the installation runs off of top of the line water cooled gaming PC’s pushed to the limit in order to squeeze maximum visual performance out of them.

Here at VRScout we strive to bring you the best of virtual reality cinema and storytelling projects from around the world. Stay tuned for more updates.

About the Scout

Jonathan Nafarrete

Jonathan Nafarrete is the co-founder and editor-in-chief of VRScout.

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