Manufacturers say that it will not be long before you will be able to choose the sound your car engine makes, in the same easy manner you change the ring tone for your mobile phone. HALOsonic is the brainchild of a British engineering company that say, “Noise is bad, sound is good.” Their system, at the touch of a button, allows you to make your electric car or hybrid car sound as if it has a V6, V8 or even a V12 underneath the bonnet.
They claim that this is a serious engineering development and not a gismo for the ecologically concerned boy racers of the future. Electric cars (or EVs), some customised cars and hybrids travel very quietly and often quite difficult to hear approaching, however government legislation will insist that all (customised cars or otherwise) make some sound to warn pedestrians of their approach.
Evidence carried out in the United States shows that the silent running EV’s can lead to an increase in people related accidents. The survey by the America’s, National Highway Traffic Administration discovered that electric cars, hybrid cars and customised cars were more likely to be involved in accidents where the vehicle was slowing down, manoeuvring or reversing.
HALOsonic do not want to add to noise pollution but realise that it is important for pedestrians to be able to detect a cars approach and be able to tell if it is accelerating or slowing. The car’s noise is not such a problem over 30mph as the cars tyre noise on the road is effective enough but at slower speeds it becomes an important factor.
The developers say that eventually EV and hybrid owners can use the ring tone as an expression of their own identity in the same way people do with mobile phones. Work is currently being conducted with musicians to create new and individual engine sounds for the future.