Artificial intelligence might soon eliminate one of the biggest bottlenecks in the car-design process.
Toyota Research Institute executives said Tuesday they've developed a generative AI technique that ensures early design sketches incorporate engineering parameters.
Using the new technique could curtail the number of iterations needed and shorten design cycles, said Avinash Balachandran, director of TRI's Human Interactive Driving division, whose team developed the technology.
"When a designer tries something, it typically goes to engineering, and they say, 'This is not possible and that is not possible,' and it goes back to the designer," he said. "That's one reason design iteration takes a long time."
Creativity may no longer be beholden to that back-and-forth friction.
Now designers can impose restraints, such as asking the AI to meet specific requirements on drag. That's an immediate focus for the company, given that aerodynamic gains would increase the range of battery electric vehicles.
In the future, they intend to explore using AI to incorporate handling characteristics based on wheelbase and structural integrity standards and dynamic performance measures.