Most women jump at the opportunity to buy something special that will
make them feel like a million dollars; especially if that special
something comes wrapped in a signature blue box or features luxurious
monogrammed leather. But a woman in a car dealership often feels like
a lamb in a wolf’s den, even if the den is littered with sleek Porsches
and cute VW Cabriolets. Enter Clutch.
Clutch is the brainchild of former beauty product developer Karen Jamison. Through her years of experience marketing specifically to women, Jamison realized that women’s needs weren’t being met, especially in traditionally hard-ball industries like the auto-industry. Jamison approached president of top quality auto dealership auto/ONE, Mike Wood, with the idea of starting a female-focused dealership and Clutch was born.
One year later, Clutch has opened their newly renovated showroom on Vancouver’s west side. With its Italian-tiled floor, Paul Kane sofa, modern lighting, La Marzocco espresso machine and Michael Luco’s architecture-inspired flower arrangements, Clutch has more the look and feel of a high end fashion boutique than a car dealership.
But it’s not just the sleek, comfortable surroundings of Clutch’s fabulous modern showroom that will make the dealership so appealing to women looking for their next vehicle. “The real difference will be in the service,” says Wood. In the lead up to Clutch’s opening, Jamison spent considerable time researching women’s shopping experiences in auto purchasing,
“The fact is, women are savvy consumers but they dread the pressure and condescension of a traditional auto dealer,” she says. “Our approach with Clutch is to recognize that, and provide each client with a hassle-free, friendly, and enjoyable experience from start to finish. There’s no need to bring your ex-boyfriend along to buy yourself a car – who wants to see him anyhow?”
As a limited time offer, Clutch will be offering high performance driving lessons to all buyers. Current CASCAR driver Tony Morris Jr., of Morrisport Advanced Driving, will help empower women when they hit the road in their new baby.
Founded in 2000, auto/ONE has built its reputation on offering the highest quality vehicles across the spectrum from entry-level to luxury at competitive pricing. Wood says the auto/ONE approach of personalized, honest service is sure to appeal to women and others who may have traditionally found the experience of buying a car intimidating or, in the worst case, insulting.
“At auto/ONE, and now with Clutch, we really see ourselves as advocates for our clients,” says Wood, noting that because they aren’t affiliated with any one manufacturer, Clutch and auto/ONE offer a level of independence few other dealerships can claim.
“Clutch is committed to providing women with the knowledge, respect and control they deserve when buying a car,” concludes Jamison. “Women successfully run their lives, preside over big businesses, and lead countries, but somehow the moment they enter a car dealership they lose that status of the in-control, confident female? At Clutch, we’re committed to putting women in the driver’s seat.”