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Niels Heusinkveld On The Difficulties Of Making Realistic Tire Models

Tire models are a major corner stone of realistically simulating car behavior in sim racing. As in real life, the tire is where the car makes contact with the (virtual) road and as such, sophisticated virtual tire models have been a major bragging point among simulation developers, with their advantages and disadvantages often sparking heated discussions in the sim racing community.

But why is it so hard to get the virtual rubber to behave in a realistic fashion? Sim racing physics guru Niels Heusinkveld tries to shed some led of the underlying issues below, explaining the challenges developers face with tire models.