Hyundai Motor Co. and Kia Motors Corp. has introduced a state-of-the-art virtual reality (VR) system to the development of new cars. The new system is intended to verify new automobile designs and maximize their completeness, thus helping the two companies shorten the development period and minimize costs. This is the first time that VR is applied to new car development in Korea.
Hyundai Motor and Kia Motors took the wraps off a design review center and a design verification system using virtual reality (VR), which are elements of a virtual development process, at the Namyang R&D Center in Hwaseong-si, Gyeonggi Province. Virtual development refers to replacing the current car development process with VR.
The two automakers completed the world's largest state-of-the-art VR design review center in March by investing 15 billion won. Up to 20 people can evaluate design quality in a virtual space by using VR at the same time.
A total of 36 motion capture sensors have been installed in the VR design review center. These sensors precisely detect the position and movement of an evaluator wearing VR devices millimeter by millimeter, allowing him to accurately evaluate a design in a virtual environment. A VR-based design quality verification system has also been built for a three-dimensional assessment of component compatibility, motions, interferences, and cooling performance.
In the near future, Hyundai and Kia's design divisions plan to build a remote VR design evaluation system through collaboration with design centers in Europe, the United States, China and India. The envisioned system will allow designers from around the world to jointly design vehicles in one virtual space and participate in design evaluation.
Hyundai Motor Group plans to gradually expand applications of VR technology from design reviews to early design stages such as idea sketching. The virtual development process will be further enhanced, including the introduction of augmented reality (AR) technology that evaluates virtual models by projecting them onto real models.
The state-of-the-art VR facility is expected to accelerate the development of a wide variety of low-cost and high-efficiency vehicles. Hyundai and Kia expect that when the virtual development process is fully introduced to their entire R&D process, the new car development period can be shortened by about 20 percent and development cost cut by 15 percent per year.