Volvo is using development tools and hardware from the gaming world as part of new research intended to improve self-driving car safety.
Volvo is using a mix of VR hardware and the Unity real-time rendering software in driveable test cars. These models are being run on a closed test tracks to safely simulate real world driving scenarios.
This new project is an arm of a partnership between Volvo and the Finnish VR hardware company Varjo. Last year they made it possible to drive a real car with a mixed reality headset.
The project members have added a full body haptic suit. This allows for precise motion tracking. The suit can also cause muscle restriction in the wearer as they would experience in a real emergency stop.
This hardware has been incorporated into a group of XC90 SUVs and stationary simulators. In the actual vehicles overlays a virtual images on top of the real world. So, the system can simulate an animal crossing the road.
The project is only in the early stages and hasn’t yet produce findings that will be used in production cars.
Bentley is rolling out a virtual experience app for its 3rd gen Flying Spur vehicle. Users will be able to experience the new vehicle before it is delivered to dealerships in early 2020.
The app is free for users to download through Google Play the Apple App Store. While it is intended primarily for potential buyers, Bentley suspects many fans of the brand will enjoy the virtual experience of the luxury car the app will provide.
Bentley fans will be able to explore the exterior and interior of both versions of the new Flying Spur. There is a luxury featured version with a gun metal exterior and the specially tailored interior. The performance-oriented model is also included in the app for virtual touring as well and users can view the new black accent.
Bentley had previously employed a similar app for its EXP 100 GT concept car which allowed fans to tour the car and place the car virtually onto different locations, even their own driveway. These features all remain in the new app for the Flying Spur but Bentley has added the option to take a virtual test drive, which will likely hold wider appeal.
For serious buyers Bentley has included contact options directly in the app for their dealerships and configurators.