I came accross this story on my RSS feed this morning and given that powertrains have been topical this week, I thought it worthwhile to mention here. I can’t find a GM press release on it, but The Auto Channel have an article about a fascinating new test facility:
GM’s new state-of-the-art High Feature Test Facility at the GM Milford Proving Ground is designed to simulate any type of road system or climatic condition found in the world.
Capable of achieving temperatures between 40 degrees below zero to 130 degrees Fahrenheit, humidity and altitudes from 700 feet below sea level to 12,500 feet, and simulating air speeds up to 100 miles per hour, the facility significantly accelerates powertrain vehicle development and enables notable cost reduction. The facility also provides full emissions measurement capability, meeting regional regulations in the U.S., Europe and Japan.
They’ve mapped a bunch of different desert and mountain roads from around the world as well as climatic settings (including altitude) and can reproduce any of them with the press of a few buttons. Pretty nifty.
The article’s well worth your 3 minutes.
Though I’ve got to say, if they wanted 4-seasons-in-one-day testing they could have saved a bunch of cash and just built an outdoor facility in Melbourne!!