Unboxing desires Ford
Innovation strategy | Concept development |Prototyping

How to create unique unboxing experience for delivering an autonomous vehicle in future?

  • Research and analysis: Internal analysis, Market analysis
  • Vision creation, Strategic direction forming
  • Concept development, road-mapping, prototyping
  • Desk research, interviews
  • Value model
  • Design roadmapping- Dr. ir. Lianne Simonse
  • Figma
  • Designed for Ford research and innovation center
  • 10 weeks (Sept. 2019- Nov. 2019)
  • In a team of 4 students from IDE TU Delft
  • Part of Design Strategy Project- SPD coursework IDE TU Delft

Ford was looking for ways to create unique customer experiences for parcel delivery that are really making a difference in how poeple are interacting with a vehicle. This project projects the idea of unique experiences with parcel delivery into the future where autonomous car itself will be a parcel to be delivered and further, develops a strategy to provide unique customer experience with this type of delivery.


Internal research
External research


Understand vision of company and broaden it to encompass a bigger mission

Concept development

Use value model and critical thinking to develop business model and overall concept

Road-mapping and prototyping

Design a Figma prototype and a roadmap to achieve the position and vision


According to Deloitte's report “Online Car Buying Experience in the New Digital Vision”, the automobile sales industry is showing a trend of transition to the Internet. Some new automotive brands (Tesla, NIO) have designed a unique set of business operation models based on the concept of direct sales, avoiding many of the criticisms of traditional distribution models. By building a highly integrated IT platform, the problem of fragmentation of user data due to the lack of coordination of the system will be solved.

As per the research of leading automotive brands, user needs-

  • After purchase protection
  • Sometimes user want to record the moment of pick up their cars, especially when they’ve purchased an expensive one.
  • Personalized service & product.

Automated car users need better guidance. The important part is consumer lack experience with highly automated vehicles, even with many new automated features. It will be difficult for ordinary user to differentiate between reality and fiction when they lack personal experience with such technology.Manufacturers will face usual tension between them and sellers- they want to encourage consumers to buy vehicles and at the same time, they also have to advise people on how the limitations of the technology and safety risks. As a solution, instruction manuals are important, but more creativity is needed which will make sure that user understands the technology and increase the probability of people reading the manual.

Based on a customer journey map, events were selected which can be designed to improve the customer experience of buying an autonomous car.


The new future vision is “Creating the ultimate unboxing experience through refreshing personalized surprises to surpass expectation”. 5 specific events were chosen which span along the timeline from manufacturing to after purchase services.

Unboxing an autonomous vehicle-

  • Online browsing to long term ownership
  • 5 phase customer journey
  • Unboxing starts the moment you imagine buying an autonomous car
Phase 1- Online experience

When purchasing the car online you will directly be offered the right insurance for you and all the other services you want with your car to make the purchase of your car the final action before experiencing your new vehicle.

Phase 2- Physical pre-unbox

Providing a key to users gives them a feeling of ownership and so, a key is sent to them in a box. The box also contains other gifts such as AR glasses, galaxy watch for further phases along with accessories for keys.

Phase 3- Virtual experience

In this phase user will be able to keep contact with the car, so to say. While the car is being made and after that on the road you will be able to enjoy the journey of this.

Phase 4- First physical experience

The car will introduce itself and its features through the virtual personal assistant and technologies such as AR and holographic projections in the car. It will give an immersive experience to user by showing a Ford movie as an example.

Phase 5- After purchase experience

The car will keep on giving surprises every 3 months with limited offers related to sleeping, gaming or working. Car will also provide suggestions on better routes to travel based on user data and preferences.

3 Horizons

The 3 horizons address the 5 phases in each horizon so as to improve the online shopping experience of users.

Horizon 1
  • Phase 1: Being able to buy the car, maintenance online, ability to control website through Amazon Alexa
  • Phase 2: Getting the car key sent to your home along with gifts from Ford such as ESports subscription etc.
  • Phase 3: Following the car through app and Ford website
  • Phase 4: Watching tour through screen in car and app, Personal assistant- combination of FordPass and SYNC
  • Phase 5: Same rewards for all ford users
Horizon 2
  • Phase 1: Being able to buy the car online combined with all other purchases such as insurance, compare car online using simulators
  • Phase 2: Getting a key sent to your home for an unboxing experience with the possibility to integrate this key into your phone, Galaxy watches as a gift with personal assistant ‘Tutu’
  • Phase 3:  Following the car through app, AR glasses
  • Phase 4: Watching tour through screen in car, AR glasses
  • Phase 5: Personalized ford rewards, vehicle suggestions and nudges
Horizon 3
  • Phase 1: Being able to buy the car online combined with all other purchases such as insurance
  • Phase 2: Getting your car key that can be digitized and your augmented reality glasses and Galaxy watch with personal assistant - Tutu advanced
  • Phase 3: Following the car through app and augmented reality glasses
  • Phase 4: Watching tour through screen in car and immersive experiences
  • Phase 5: Personalized ford rewards, adaptive features based on user preference, collaboration of public institutes such as hospitals & government
Tactical roadmap
Figma prototype
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