Domino’s DXP: Hot Pizza, Cool Vehicle
Domino's DXP vehicle is built on the Chevrolet Spark platform and features a warming oven, storage areas for pizza, and a console to hold other smaller menu items. Photo courtesy of Domino's.
Domino’s Pizza has a long history of pizza delivery. In the U.S., Domino’s delivers about 400 million pizzas per year and delivery drivers cover approximately 10 million miles each week, according to the company.
With the help of Roush Enterprises, Domino’s is now operating a customized pizza delivery vehicle. Using the Chevrolet Spark platform, the DXP (delivery expert) has been specially designed with a delivery-focused interior.
“The Domino’s DXP is the first purpose-built vehicle aimed at revolutionizing pizza delivery,” says Russell Weiner, president of Domino’s USA. “This innovation allows drivers to do their jobs with greater ease and efficiency.”
The design and production of the DXP took over three years. It started with Domino’s Ultimate Delivery Vehicle Challenge, which was hosted by Local Motors, a company that designs and builds vehicles. The international contest had 385 entries from designers around the world, according to Domino’s.
Once the winning design was picked, Domino’s took the concept to Kenneth Baker, a former research and development executive at General Motors.
“Ken looked at the concept and recognized Roush’s capability to bring the design to life,” says Kyle Jastren, general manager of product programs at Roush Enterprises. “We took that concept and developed a solution for Domino’s. We engineered every DXP product and component inside the vehicle.”
Currently, Domino’s fleet contains 156 DXP vehicles — 98 were built in the first round at the end of 2015 and 58 more will be hitting the road this summer, according to Jenny Fouracre, Domino’s director of public relations.
Instead of building a car from scratch, Baker and Roush were able to take the elements of the winning design and create the DXP off the platform of the Chevrolet Spark.
“We picked the Spark because it’s a flexible and good-sized vehicle,” says Fouracre. “We didn’t need anything that was too big. We needed something that was fuel efficient, had good handling, and included safety features.”
Additionally, the Spark is an international platform vehicle. Currently, the DXP is only at U.S. franchisees, but the Spark platform would allow Domino's to provide the DPX to international franchisees if the company decides to in the future, says Fouracre.
Roush took the Spark and completely redesigned it as a pizza delivery vehicle — only the driver’s seat was left intact. The interior was reconfigured to feature front and rear storage areas for the pizzas, and a non-slip surface was added to keep items more stable during delivery. “The DXP can hold up to 80 pizzas,” says Fouracre.
Roush removed the passenger seat and added a console with several compartments that can store Domino’s other menu items including salads, dipping sauces, wings containers, and sodas, according to Jastren.
Behind the driver’s door, Roush installed the warming oven, which can hold two Heat Wave bags. The oven operates by an electrical heating element that’s powered through the vehicle’s electrical system, according to Greg Fraker, vice president of product programs at Roush. The oven can be opened by drivers with the touch of a key fob.
“The oven required some new electrical harnessing and design and development,” says Fraker. “The oven maintains its selected temperature and cycles off after a period of time. It can then be reset to provide an ongoing warm environment for the pizzas.”
DXP’s exterior is eye-catching with its blue, red, and white colors representing the Domino’s brand. Roush added Domino’s logo on the front fascia and on the hubcaps. The side panel features a puddle light that displays a reflective graphic of the brand, according to Jastren. This delivery path illuminator can help drivers see curbs at night and hopefully avoid puddles and other debris.
Another exterior detail is the “Out for Delivery” roof light. When this car topper light is illuminated, it means the driver is on his or her way to a delivery, says Fouracre.
“It’s a fun car and has gotten a lot of notice while on the road,” says Fouracre. “People are excited to see them driving around and have been posting photos of them on social media.”
So far, Fouracre says the franchisees love the DXP vehicles. Currently, the vehicles are on the road in several states, including California, Oregon, Washington, Texas, Illinois, Michigan, Louisiana, Missouri, and Virginia.
“The vehicle is a marketing venture for Domino’s,” says Jastren. “We wanted to capture the true image of Domino’s on the vehicle while making sure it was still functional.”