Driving Simulator

A virtual validation space to test or manipulate factors that affect the performance of the driver, the road environment, driver satisfaction and vehicle technology.

People-centric design

Sustaining and developing the UK’s future road network requires deep understanding of customer satisfaction, safety and performance. The driving simulator is a cost-effective testing facility designed to help customers achieve their aims of maximising network performance and customer satisfaction in a safe and controlled environment.

  • Pre-build, test and design of mission-critical infrastructure
  • Reduce risk by identifying design performance issues
  • Engage stakeholders during the planning process

Human factors research

Drivers have to contend with multiple factors inside and outside of the vehicle that can impact their driving performance, and the safety of themselves and other road users. The driving simulator enables innovation-led technology companies, research institutions, marketing agencies and other organisations to investigate driver distraction and impairment factors.

  • Examine the attitudes and behaviour of drivers in a safe and controlled environment
  • Test and measure drivers’ performance
  • Inform legislation, transport policy and technology advancements
  • Understand how to encourage behavioural change

Vehicle technology

The growth of connected and automated systems has a growing role in vehicle operations, and the driving simulator enables solutions to be validated in highly realistic scenarios.

  • Reduce risk for vehicle manufacturers and technology providers
  • Test and develop innovative concepts and technology components
  • Improve vehicle performance for a safe, cleaner future
  • Minimise driver distraction

The virtual world meets the real world


  • A Peugeot 3008 straight off the forecourt with fully operational controls. SUVs are a popular car with consumers, making it quick and easy for drivers to familiarise themselves with the vehicle.
  • High fidelity test environment that accurately reflects real-world driving conditions.
  • 300˚ projection of driving scene creates fully immersive experience.
  • Access to over 300 highly qualified experts within TRL for expertise in new technologies, traffic management, driver behaviour, safety regulations, road infrastructure and air quality.
  • Unobtrusive motion platform provides a natural experience and has a lower than average participant dropout rate.
  • Eye tracking and physiological monitoring gives an in-depth understanding of driver reaction
  • Driver interaction with the vehicle controls is captured directly from the vehicle CAN BUS at a high frequency.
  • Comprehensive volunteer database allows you to call in the ideal sample from over 2,000 drivers.



Our portable driving simulator has interactive controls, frontal screens and wing mirror visuals with 180˚ projection of the driving scene. It is also fully compatible with the main driving simulator.

  • Reduce risk for fleet managers
  • Train and monitor drivers’ performance
  • Investigate drivers’ behaviour and attitudes
  • Ready to go in under 30 minutes



Our portable HGV driving simulator enables you to:

  • Train and assess the performance of HGV drivers in a risk-free environment
  • Monitor drivers’ response to in-vehicle technology
  • Provide safety training for emergency situations in a controls, safe environment


Evidenced-based research

Here are some of the studies that the DigiSim has been involved in over the last 50 years:

Infrastructure planning

  • Road and junction design
  • Smart motorway design
  • Speed variability
  • Roundabouts
  • Cycle lanes
  • Safe site access
  • Tunnel layouts
  • Zebra crossings

Driver behaviour

  • Autonomous vehicles
  • HGV platoons
  • Billboard advertising
  • Traffic flow
  • Road signage

Driver performance

  • Infotainment and navigation systems
  • Wearable technology and mobile phones
  • Vehicle performance perception
  • Driver reaction times
  • Hazard perception test
  • Haulage driver training

Impairment research

  • Alcohol and medicinal drugs
  • Fatigue
  • Energy drinks
  • Visibility awareness of older drivers
  • Younger drivers

For more information about our simulators, please email digisim@trl.co.uk

If you are interested in participating in trials using our simulators, please register here





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