Automotive industry is witnessing a significant growth in the number of Electronic Control Units (ECUs) and its features owing to the focused inclination towards customer preference, comfort, safety, environmental friendliness and governmental regulations. The software components are booming as the pivotal to cater to the technology-driven trends such as diverse mobility, autonomous driving, electrification, and connectivity. This necessitates exhaustive testing to ensure quality of the system as any unpredictable failures may impose severe financial and market risk on the OEM. The industry has largely supplemented Hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) testing to manual testing considering the testing constraints posed by the latter. Automation trends complement the demand for quick yet exhaustive testing prior to the market launch. This paper discusses the level of automation adopted by the industry for efficient testing using HIL systems and focusses on the key challenges associated with the reusability and maintainability of the conventional automated tests. The paper discusses the testing framework suited for HIL automation and illustrates the adoption of the framework to create an automation architecture that can be used readily across different HILs, vehicle programs and ECU variants. Thus the paper presents a new facet of automation for HIL tests and brings out the efficiency and benefits achieved by the proposed processes.