Driving simulators: Visualizing vehicle development

Experience the technology in your development process firsthand – test functions which are still in the conceptual or early stages of development in a driving simulator. When virtual test driving is combined with driving simulation, it becomes possible to experience the real world virtually in the most realistic way possible, with the addition of real haptic feedback. With the help of the CarMaker product family, you can test functions at an early stage not just on computers, but also in realistic scenarios, allowing you to discover the potential for optimization. Easily immerse the driver in the virtual world – you will also benefit from the experience gained from participant tests. Virtual test driving makes testing vehicle design and functions during development simple, without high investment costs or complex setups.

Using a driving simulator is ideal for a diverse range of scenarios which would be too complicated, costly, time consuming or dangerous to test in the real world – stay on the safe side with virtual vehicles and virtual pedestrians! Use our System Experience Platform or connect your own driving simulator to open integration and test platforms. This allows you to perform experience-based investigations for concrete test cases from A for autonomous driving to Z for zero emissions. Does my vehicle brake at the right time? How does driving style affect the range of electric vehicles? How do users experience the head-up display? These questions and many others are answered – and seen – when virtual test driving is combined with a driving simulator


System Experience Platform

The static System Experience Platform (SEP) driving simulator is the ideal tool for subjectively testing vehicle functions through direct experience – assertions regarding the operability and the behavior of systems can be made at an earlier stage than usual, especially in the area of advanced driver assistance systems. Make the most of the advantages offered by the combination of a detailed and realistic HMI simulation and a real-world driving experience, coupled with the CarMaker open integration and test platform.

Create individual test scenarios with only a few clicks of the mouse. This gives you the option of utilizing rapid prototyping by integrating various functions in different forms (e.g. Simulink, C, and FMU model).

The features and benefits of the System Experience Platform include:

  • Realistic haptics with real-time feedback
  • Real pedals and a real steering wheel to ensure a realistic driving experience
  • Possibility of connecting to real control units 

Here’s how you can use the System Experience Platform in the development of your individual system:

  • Test advanced driver assistance systems and (highly) automated driving functions during the entire development process from MIL/SIL to HIL and VIL; for example, you can evaluate longitudinal control functions such as steering assist or tests of passing behavior during development.
  • Promptly assess function optimizations with no need for real-world prototypes.
  • Connect to third party tools, enabling, for example, design studies to be performed in a “CAVE” environment with a field of view of up to 360 degrees.
  • Obtain informative reports from participant tests on the subjective experience of vehicle functions, e.g. advanced driver assistance systems.
Augmented reality with VIL

Functions can be safely tested in a real vehicle by linking augmented reality and the vehicle-in-the-loop method. For this, a real vehicle is driven around an open space while the environment (traffic objects, traffic signs, lines etc.) is partly or completely simulated, depending on your requirements. The driver or test participant sees the virtual objects in real time through a pair of AR glasses.

The features and benefits of using augmented reality in a VIL vehicle include:

  • Simple coupling and simultaneous perception of the real-world test drive and virtual scenarios
  • Experiencing of real-world acceleration, vehicle dynamics and haptics for realistic tests of software functions
  • More straightforward implementation than with complex, dynamic driving simulators 
  • Ability to integrate various AR solutions, depending on the application

Here’s how you can use augmented reality devices in the development of your individual system:

  • Perform HMI and participant tests in the early stages of development (with no need for a real prototype).
  • Test ADAS models as MIL/SIL/HIL in a real vehicle.
  • Reproduce any customizable situation safely.

Do you want to use virtual test driving for your driving simulator tests, but already have your eye on a specific hardware solution? No problem! Thanks to the openness of the CarMaker product family, it is possible to perform your virtual tests on a range of hardware solutions – the choice is yours! Or do you already use a certain model and would like to expand its functionalities? Even then, you can use virtual test driving with hardly any limitations.