Vincent designed a revolutionary driving system that lets handicapped people enjoy the thrill of sports car racing. Here's how CATIA and Dassault Systèmes helped Vincent get his idea out of the garage and into the fast lane.
A Revolutionary Idea
If you’re disabled, driving a sports car seems like a wild dream. Thanks to a unique combination of passion, innovation and CATIA V5 software, this dream has today come true. A sports car enthusiast from a very early age, Vincent was looking for a solution that would let him drive any car on a circuit, despite his disability. Unsatisfied with solutions already available on the market, Vincent decided to team up with a lifelong friend – and onboard electronics expert – to design his own system.
The two friends quickly came up with the brilliant idea of moving the clutch control to the stick shift knob. So instead of using his left foot, the driver uses an electronic control integrated into the stick shift. Clutch control at your fingertips! The next challenge was to quickly and inexpensively transform this newfangled clutch system into a full-fledged technical solution. How were they going to perform structural studies and simulate the functioning of the entire mechanism, as well as the manufacture of parts? With a system as critical as the clutch, there was no room for approximation. Nothing short of flawless reliability was called for. After all, the driver’s safety depended on it!
This is where Dassault Systemes’ powerful, flexible 3D design solutions stepped in. Vincent tapped the rich capabilities of CATIA V5 to model and simulate the system and perform the structural calculations that would ensure optimum performance even before the system physically existed. Rather than developing costly physical prototypes, he was able to test a multitude of hypotheses before producing the first example of his unique system, which he called Neoclutch.
Vincent says that digital modeling was the key to his project’s success. Today, Vincent has realized his dream and can now concentrate on pursuing his passion – driving. However, he also intends to let other disabled drivers share his innovative solution and is currently pursing contacts with ANVAR, the French Agency for Innovation, and several professional drivers in an effort to commercialize the Neoclutch. Vincent’s project is an exciting illustration of what can be achieved through a combination of passion and creativeness – with a powerful kickstart from CATIA software!