Chris Longpre spent a decade in the video-game virtual worlds of "Emperor: Battle for Dune" and "Pirates: The Legend of Black Kat."
Now the third-generation dealer has returned to the real world of auto retailing as vice president of his family's Lexus of Westminster dealership, between Anaheim and Long Beach, Calif.
Longpre still plays video games for a couple of hours a week, but he has scaled back his gaming to spend time on a new endeavor. Drawing on his experience as a video-game producer, Longpre wants to reinvent how dealership computer systems work.
His goal: a dealer management system that's as simple to grasp as a video game.
Longpre's system isn't for sale or even in beta testing at his own dealership. But his experience with both dealer systems and complex, multiplayer video games means he brings a fresh perspective to the issues facing dealership systems.