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Exploring the future of in-car comfort with a world-leading automotive supplier


Founded in Japan, DENSO is one of the world’s leading automotive suppliers. In collaboration with the Munich branch of the DENSO EU Innovation Lab, Star aimed to identify and explore opportunity areas for the future of in-car comfort. To do this, we worked with DENSO to define and develop a program of detailed qualitative research. 

  • Collaborated with DENSO to define and detail the project vision
  • Pursued extensive secondary research into industry trends and cases
  • Developed qualitative research methodology and process
  • Conducted in-depth interviews with leading automotive industry experts and in-home consumer interviews for selected customer segments
  • Identified persona archetypes based on patterns in mobility habits, preferences, and needs
  • Transformed learnings into opportunity areas with actionable insights


As the leading supplier of advanced technology, systems, and components for the world’s major automakers, DENSO knows that consumers value comfort. Star’s unique expertise in the German automotive industry made us a natural partner for their EU Innovation Lab. Working together, we developed project parameters that would allow DENSO to answer questions like: 

  • What are the intrinsic values behind owning a vehicle?
  • What are the core benefits of driving a vehicle?
  • How do individuals define comfort? 
  • What impact do their mobility experiences have on this definition? 
Denso - automotive future
Denso vision


Through a close co-creation process, the DENSO and Star teams defined the project vision. Initiating an exploratory phase, we analyzed the current state of the automotive industry to establish a framework for the various trends in mobility.

From here, we conducted expert interviews with leaders from well-known automotive and mobility companies. Their expertise provided us an outlook for how certain mobility trends will manifest in the future and which ones will be at the forefront of the industry.

Concurrently, we undertook a series of consumer interviews to contextualize their current and future mobility needs emphasizing in-car features, new car technologies and how individuals defined comfort.

Results from the interviews were then organized into user segments, which allowed us to create persona archetypes. Finally, insights were generated, opportunity areas were defined, and actionable recommendations were shared with DENSO.

Adapt, innovate, grow, thrive. Here’s how Star’s automotive expertise can guide you down the road to success. 

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The DENSO EU Innovation Lab now has a clearer view of what car drivers want: comfort and convenience. They’ll explore the defined opportunity areas and develop potential new products or services based around the future of in-car comfort. This will encourage more innovation in the auto industry, impacting automakers worldwide.  

Press Statements

“DENSO presented its latest developments at the 68th IAA auto show in Frankfurt, stating that it believes convenience and comfort will become crucial elements for mobility providers in the future.”

September 25, 2019
Autonomous Vehicle Technology


“The key focus areas at the DENSO stand were convenience and comfort, which DENSO believes will become crucial elements for mobility providers in the future.”

September 12, 2019
New Mobility

Project scope

Service lines:

  • Co-Creation Workshop
  • Secondary Research
  • Expert Interviews
  • Consumer Interviews
  • Personas
  • Insights & Opportunity Areas