A Driver in the Loop (DIL) simulator is a mechanism for creating an immersive automotive environment for real people. If a simulator can create an illusion that is so convincing that a driver responds as if they were in a real car, then it an be a very useful and cost-effective tool for human factor studies, vehicle engineering work and/or fundamental research.
DIL simulation has progressed dramatically in recent times. Legacy, "hexapod" style simulators, derived from the aircraft technology 50+ years ago, are now being superseded by so-called 'engineering-class' simulators. These powerful devices can be connected to real hardware and advanced software with ease, enabling engineers to recreate real-world scenarios and see how real people engage with emerging automotive technologies.