This paper presents a new method for the design and validation of advanced driver assistance systems (ADASs). With vehicle hardware-in-the-loop (VEHIL) simulations, the development process, and more specifically the validation phase, of intelligent vehicles is carried out safer, cheaper, and is more manageable. In the VEHIL laboratory, a full-scale ADAS-equipped vehicle is set up in a hardware-in-the-loop simulation environment, where a chassis dynamometer is used to emulate the road interaction and robot vehicles to represent other traffic. In this controlled environment, the performance and dependability of an ADAS is tested to great accuracy and reliability. The working principle and the added value of VEHIL are demonstrated with test results of an adaptive cruise control and a forward collision warning system. On the basis of the ‘V’ diagram, the position of VEHIL in the development process of ADASs is illustrated.