The Transformative Power of Virtual Reality in Automotive Design

Photo of author
Written By Naomi Martin

Naomi Martin is a dedicated writer with a passion for exploring the intricacies of data security & sharing valuable insights.

Are you curious about the ways in which virtual reality (VR) is transforming automotive design processes? The automotive industry is experiencing a technological revolution fueled by emerging technologies like augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). These technologies are pushing the boundaries of design, improving sustainability and cost efficiency, and enabling collaboration between teams.

In this article, we will explore the applications of virtual reality in automotive design, how it is reshaping the passenger experience, the benefits of virtual reality, and the future of this emerging technology.

Applications of Virtual Reality in Automotive Design

Virtual reality (VR) technology has opened up new applications in the automotive design industry. With the help of VR, car designers can simulate the design and performance of vehicles with more accuracy and shorter lead times. Here are some areas where VR is transforming the automotive design industry:

  • Design and Illustration: 3D digital design, procedural navigation, 3D modeling and 3D graphics offer a new standard of visual design output. This technology optimizes the production process, allowing designers to create more options with less time spent on concept designs and prototyping. The fuse placement, a tool used for the placement of different parts of the car, is highly efficient for the creation of mock-ups designs for both interiors and exteriors, providing better clarity of the car design and flexibility for design variation.

  • Collaboration: VR technology enables real-time collaborative design review sessions between teams that are geographically dispersed. Teams from different locations can work together in a multi-user environment, providing collaborative input for the design process. Whether it is cross-team working with design engineers, exterior designers or interior designers, VR ensures that they are all on the same page, leading to better design outcomes.

  • Design Verification Process: VR technology helps to verify the feasibility and performance of the vehicle design before it goes into the physical production stage. With the help of VR simulations and training, automakers can ensure that the design meets the quality standards and create an ergonomic analysis of the design to enhance the occupant interaction.

  • 3D visualisation: VR technology has opened up opportunities for virtual reality services that provide virtual interactive walkthroughs, simulated test drives, and product presentations. With customizable virtual reality and 360-degree physical reality tours, customers can view a product from any angle, with color and material possibilities. With this, luxury car makers like BMW and VW create new retail experiences that will drive the customer experience to another level.

  • Product Design Process: In VR technology, VR visualization tools like Siemens’ ‘VR design evaluation system’ and Unreal Engine Technology Platform provide incredible improvements in VR-aided product design processes. Hyundai and Daimler both leverage this technology to optimize the product design process.

To sum it up, VR technology enhances productivity and provides better resource management for the automotive industry. This includes optimized workflows, shorter time-to-market for product releases, and improved vehicle quality. In the next section, we will see how VR is revolutionizing the passenger experience

Reshaping the Passenger Experience

The future passenger economy will require mobility solutions different from present-day scenarios. Advancements in VR technology are changing the way passengers experience cars, especially when it comes to self-driving cars or autonomous vehicles. VR technology can enhance the in-car experience with extended reality (XR), creating a more interactive in-car environment. The efficient content accompanying the technology adapts to the route length, driving style, and location of the vehicle.

Autonomous vehicles open up new opportunities for immersive VR environments, providing educational content pieces that allow passengers to experience new worlds, improving learning opportunities, and enabling remote collaboration. But VR has also been developed to combat one of the most prevalent issues of passengers in cars: motion sickness.

Automakers need solutions that combine car data with headset movements to manage orientation and eliminate motion sickness. Companies like Hyundai are developing tools to deal with this problem. The feature analyzes driving data in combination with data about the passengers to develop personalized ground rules to limit the impact of motion sickness.

Benefits of Virtual Reality

Not only is virtual reality (VR) technology transforming the automotive design process, but it is also helping the automotive industry enhance its sustainability goals, reduce cost and improve performance. Here are some benefits of virtual reality for the automotive industry:

  • Reduced cost and lead time: VR technology reduces the costs and time required for developing prototypes. With virtual reality, automotive companies can tweak the design of every component of the car, reducing the production costs of automobiles. VR also reduces the lead time from concept drawing to the final product by creating a space where designers can test concepts and designs.

  • Optimized collaboration: Cross-team working, remote collaboration, collaborative input. All of these are made more accessible with virtual reality in the automotive industry. With VR technology, companies can reduce the barrier of physical location, which is blocking effective collaboration. It enables an interactive working environment that is as close to the physical environment as possible, removing the need for face-to-face interactions.

  • Improved performance and research: VR technology provides a simulated environment that gives an idea of how a car would perform in real-life scenarios. This virtual experience enables design changes to be tested, retested, and perfected even before the design is finalized. VR solutions like VR design evaluation system and Unreal Engine Technology platform provide excellent performance and research improvements.

  • Sustainability and carbon neutrality goals: VR in the automotive industry has a significant impact on sustainability. With the production of VR and AR models, automotive companies can reduce carbon footprint, which improves the sustainability of the product.

Companies supplying top-notch VR solutions specifically for the automotive sector are growing in number. ST Engineering Antycip provides VR training, simulators, and immersive environments to this sector.

The Future of Virtual Reality in Automotive Design

The future of virtual reality (VR) in the automotive industry shows greater potential for advancements. Autonomous vehicles require specific attention to responding to future passenger needs in terms of XR content creation, in-car reality experience. Automakers are teaming up with tech giants like Apple to create mixed-reality solutions like AR windshields that will offer the boundary-pushing features of tomorrow.

Augmented reality (AR) is also a tool that will be highly beneficial in upcoming autonomous vehicles. In the sports sector, AR technology provides real-time information to sportspeople. Augmented reality in vehicles can provide information on different aspects like buildings, roads, objects, and more as it uses a camera to see the physical world and overlays digital information on top of it. Leading companies in the automotive industry like BMW, Volvo, Daimler, and Volkswagen have all embraced the technology.

Intramural collaborations focus on improving the autonomous driving experience as they continue to strive towards a safer, efficient, and sustainable urban environment. By leveraging the internet of things (IoT) and other emerging technologies, automotive companies can create cars that are smarter and better connected to the world around them.

At the same time, technology-infused passenger experiences will be used to create virtual reality mobile apps, making it possible to provide design variations in real-time. Product design, field testing inspection, and vehicle service in the automotive industry will all benefit from remote inspections and repairs via smart glasses.

Conclusion

Virtual reality (VR) has transformed the way the automotive industry works and is helping automakers to be more sustainable, cost-efficient, and innovative. The applications in use today across design, production process, and collaborative input solutions such as remote collaboration in multi-location environments enable real-time collaborative design review sessions.

As the technology continues to evolve, VR and AR will continue to contribute to more efficient and sustainable solutions for automotive companies. In the future, VR technology can be used as a sustainable tool for designing, developing, manufacturing, and validating cars while providing better performance, performance improvements, ergonomics, and passenger experience. It is evident that automotive companies are leveraging this powerful technology to stay ahead of the competition while improving their overall quality of service.