This diagram illustrates the role simulation plays in reducing physical prototypes, and shows the additional benefit of using driving simulators to further reduce physical prototypes.
While simulation provides the foundation for a Zero Prototypes strategy, the use of driving simulators as a collaborative platform between departments and suppliers is essential for streamlined collaboration in the quest for drastically reducing the dependency on physical prototypes.
Assessing the driving experience is critical during vehicle development, whether evaluating a new sound design, HMI concept or performance on a test track. Test drivers and development engineers use simulators to drive a virtual car in a virtual environment and to evaluate the driving behavior.
To achieve a realistic driving experience, we need to address three key senses: what do we feel, what do we see, and what do we hear. This includes realistic movements and vibrations, realistic environments, and realistic noise and sound.
The path to "Zero Prototypes" development begins with evaluating the current maturity level of virtual processes. A Digital Development Plan is then created to define processes for creating accurate digital twins for use in driving simulators.
Continuously improving all processes and models is key to this approach: This can be achieved in the Zero Prototypes Lab, where different disciplines can be studied separately and together, trade-offs can be evaluated, and development time can be accelerated while reducing the need for physical testing.