DETROIT — Tearing down vehicles part by part has long been a way for automakers to glean insights about their rivals' latest models.
But engineering firm Caresoft Global Inc. has a much easier, faster and cheaper way to accomplish the same goal. Its virtual teardown technology can save automakers millions of dollars and hours of valuable product development time.
Caresoft engineers use high-tech 3D scans to digitally strip apart vehicles — down to individual battery cells, wires and screws — and sells the data to curious automakers and suppliers for up to half a million dollars. The company's software also can provide information about the materials used and cost of each vehicle component.
"You've never seen a competitor's car like this," Caresoft CEO Mathew Vachaparampil told Automotive News. "Is the technology perfect? No, but it is the best in the world today."
The company, founded in 2007 and headquartered in Detroit, started offering virtual teardowns of Tesla's Model X crossover and has since scanned other high-profile electric vehicles such as the Chevrolet Bolt and Tesla Model 3. It plans to add the Jaguar I-Pace and other vehicles.
The auto industry is taking notice.