A proper modern car is almost always sold globally. It is simply how the automotive business works. But at the same time it causes a huge headache to manufacturers, because their cars have to work equally well in warm and moist climate as well as in extremely cold and dry places. How do car companies ensure that? It comes courtesy to extreme climate testing.
Hyundai recently revealed how company is testing its new hot hatch, set to debut in Europe in the second half of 2017. The new car was being driven around on a frozen lake in Sweden, not so far away from Polar Circle. Temperatures in the area sometimes drop as low as minus 30 °C. For people from colder climates it does not look as that cold, but for a car it is a torture.
Every vehicle is a combination of thousands of different parts, made from different materials. Hyundai has to ensure that shock absorbers, steering mechanism, all suspension components, electronics, tires and so on will function properly even in such extreme cold. Generally speaking, rubber does not like cold, so Hyundai has to work on different combinations and make it so that it would work well as well in Sweden as it does in Spain. So extreme heat testing is conducted too.
When harsh whether hits you, where do you hide? Chances are, you are running to your car. It has to withstand blizzards, lightning, ice storms and dust storms and be fine with it. It must be durable, because people will not be happy and the brand will soon lose its customer base. And Hyundai really does not cut corners. Brand’s first multi-purpose commercial van for the European market, the H350 covered almost 5 million kilometres during the evaluation and refinement of the vehicle.
These tests re rather complex. Of course, main functions of the car must be completed perfectly, but there are many different little things that have to be assessed too. For example, experts are paying attention to how fast windscreen demists in different climate conditions, how long does it take for the cabin to heat up and so on. Cars have to be tested on different road surfaces too, since they vary from country to country.
However, a big part of the tests are conducted indoors. Hyundai has a special climate chamber, which can simulate harsh weather conditions. Cars are put through 60 degrees heat or even 7 centimetres worth of snow in an hour. Everything has to work perfectly. So next time you will be sitting in your air-conditioned cabin enjoying hi-fi music, remember that it was thoroughly tested to ensure your relaxed pleasure.