British automaker Aston Martin is expanding its product portfolio to include boats, baby strollers, handbags, ornamental bowls, and apartment designs, among other luxury items, reports Automotive News.
Having launched a new store in London, England’s exclusive Mayfair district, the Aston Martin boutique store will put on display a selection of luxury items previously foreign to the automotive brand.
Based on the performance of this pilot store, the brand may expand to additional markets, opening boutique stores across the globe while targeting affluent shopping districts such as Toronto’s Yorkville.
Prior to a planned initial public offering on the stock market, the marque is busily preparing additional revenue streams that will ensure its growth–hopefully returning the brand to profitability by 2018.
While Aston Martin risks cheapening its brand image by selling commonplace items, the high-end marque is betting that exceptional design and stratospheric pricing will protect its badge from tarnishing–for instance, its new baby stroller will retail for more than $4,000 after taxes.
By launching a line of high-end goods, Aston Martin is leveraging its in-house talent–keeping its many skilled artists and designers busy when not focused on future car design. Many automakers including BMW, Jaguar and Porsche have already taken this approach, offering up unique one-off products that speak to each brand’s design ethos.
While Aston Martin has dedicated some of its resources toward industrial design, it has not slowed in its efforts to develop its automotive product line. A new crossover dubbed the DBX is expected to reach production by the end of the decade, but this vehicle will likely see limited production in a nod to exclusivity, growing Aston Martin’s overall production numbers, but not at the expense of brand image.
“Wouldn’t it be great if you’re down in a luxury harbor somewhere staying in an Aston Martin apartment, with your Aston Martin parked in the car park, and your Aston Martin boat harbored outside?” said Andy Palmer, Aston Martin CEO, in a recent interview.
Fans of Aston Martin would likely embrace the CEO’s vision – packing the rear-hatch of their new DBX with as many luxury items as possible before hitching up to their new Aston Martin boat trailer – but whether or not well-heeled patrons of the brand’s new shop at 8 Dover Street spring for these bespoke goods remains to be seen.