Would you prefer your electric car to make a noise safety reasons?

Some people have been suggesting that electric vehicles today should have noise creators added to their engines because of safety issues. While on the surface this seems slightly bizarre, the fact is that if you do not hear the vehicle coming, as you would with a traditional fuel powered car, is there potentially a safety issue?

Some of the US states have brought in regulations so that electric vehicles do need to have some kind of noise safety measure to protect pedestrians. This is likely to be something discussed time and time again in the future as more and more people look towards electric vehicles and the technology improves. Would you feel safe walking along roads with an electric vehicle behind you that you could not hear?

No not going with this concept. The safety totally depends on the driver and the pedestrain so it has got nothing to do with the vehicle sound.

Hi Car

I certainly agree with your comments but, do we not sometimes hear the noise of an oncoming car before we see it? Next time you are out and about, ready to cross the road, just have a second to think whether you actually see the vehicle first or you hear it?

Agree with you Editor. :slight_smile:

But I personally feel it is the reckless drivers that cause the problem and yes we do see whether there are vehicles coming before we cross the road.

Just my opinion. :slight_smile:

It seems that the US government is adamant that artificial engine noise should be added to electric vehicles up to a speed of 17 mph. Apparently this is when the general noise of an electric engine begins to kick in.

When I bought my 2012 Prius V in October of 2012 I didn’t know whether or not it had the noise-maker. In the cooler weather with the windows closed I never heard it but the first time I drove through a parking garage I heard it echoing off the walls and other cars. It’s a weird noise for sure.

I briefly disconnected the speaker and heard comments in a crowded parking lot that “that’s the quietest car I’ve ever heard” (or not-heard); so I reconnected it. I’m not unhappy with the noise-maker. It only works when in pure electric mode and below 15 MPH so it’s not that intrusive. Sort of sounds like the shuttle-craft in Star-Trek (TOS) landing… How apropos.

Unfortunately, I have to agree that the noise is necessary. The Texas School for the Blind is only a couple of miles from my office, and we have a large (by comparison to other cities) population of blind individuals who are very mobile. While the downtown area of Austin has the countdown pedestrian crosswalks with a chime for blind individuals, much of the city and surrounding metro area does not. I do agree with Car that drivers and pedestrians should both be responsible and follow the rules of the road, but we all know that there are plenty of irresponsible people in this world, on both sides of the car door.

Hi Hford

This is certainly a very difficult subject because on one hand the new technology associated with electric vehicles has taken away the noise while on the other hand there are certainly safety aspects to take into account.

I think that the US government and the automotive companies will come to an agreement in due course which will be somewhere within the middle ground of each parties demands.