Next has partnered with multichannel car retailer Rockar to turn excess space at its largest store into a car showroom.

The fashion behemoth will transform part of its shop in Manchester’s Arndale centre into a space big enough to feature several cars.

Next shoppers will be able to inspect the vehicles on show, talk to expert staff and make purchases while in-store.

It is not yet known which car brand will be sold in the shop-in-shop, but Retail Week understands that Ford and Fiat are front-runners.

The format is likely to follow the pattern trailblazed in the Bluewater and Westfield shopping centres, where Hyundai and Jaguar Land Rover cars are sold via in-mall showrooms using a variety of digital media.

Rockar founder Simon Dixon said: “The new stores that we’re creating within Next shops will have the potential to work in complete tandem with local dealerships, who’ll be able to benefit massively from this proposition.

“We see Rockar’s role here very much as an enabler.”

He hinted that the partnership could be rolled out to more stores across Next’s 500-strong estate, since it represented an “exciting area of growth for both brands”.

Next declined to comment.