The design and engineering process for the 2023 Cadillac Lyriq electric crossover will be supported by General Motors’ growing arsenal of virtual testing and development tools.
GM pulled the wraps off the production-ready version of the Cadillac Lyriq last week. This unveiling date was actually nine months ahead of schedule, and the automaker says the accelerated timeline was made possible by its new virtual testing and validation processes.
“As demonstrated by Lyriq, the process of virtual design, development and validation has a profound impact on the overall efficiency of GM vehicle programs,” the automaker said in statement. “Implementing the tools early in the development process allows teams to optimize a vehicle’s design, quality and performance within the confines of a digital environment, enabling GM to rapidly accelerate product development cycles while reducing engineering costs by $1.5 billion per year.”
Virtual engineering software helped GM develop several aspects of the Lyriq, including its aerodynamics, driver assistance and active safety features and its crashworthiness. Engineers also used computer software to determine cabin comfort for passengers in extreme hot and extreme cold climates and to tune the aeroacoustics and active noise cancellation technologies. GM used similar virtual engineering processes in the design and development of another of its future electric vehicles – the GMC Hummer EV.
“While GM has been developing great products for more than 100 years, virtual engineering has allowed us to visualize aspects of our designs that have not been previously observable with conventional vehicle testing. This is one of many inherent strengths of virtual engineering that we’ve capitalized on to completely reimagine how we create and develop future mobility products like the Cadillac LYRIQ,” explained Mike Anderson, GM’s executive director of Virtual Design.
Design variation is one of the many ways virtual engineering and testing software helps save on research and development costs. Software like this allows the engineering team to quickly tweak a design that may have drawbacks or issues with it, whereas before this design would have made it through to the prototyping phase and been physically manufactured before the engineers realized there was a problem with it.
“This new approach certainly achieved our initial goal of drastically reducing our engineering spend on expensive prototypes, but, more importantly, has enabled us to run faster than ever before, and deliver better quality on our first production vehicle builds,” Anderson added.
Thanks to this accelerated development cycle, GM will begin taking orders for the 2023 Cadillac Lyriq this September and will put the vehicle into production early next year. Customers can expect similar accelerated development timelines for other future GM EV products, as well.