Silent running

I can’t find it on my blog anywhere (yet) but I saw this one coming a year ago.


The vision of tranquil modern cities, with inhabitants gliding by silently in electric cars, may be shattered by European plans to introduce artificial warning sounds to the new generation of zero-emission vehicles.

Each manufacturer may be permitted to provide its own “signature tune”, with the regulation simply setting a minimum volume to prevent pedestrians, cyclists and especially blind people from stepping into the path of battery-powered cars.

Some manufacturers are likely to opt for an engine noise while others are considering adopting the noises of spacecraft from science fiction films, such as the podracers from Star Wars.

Oh fabulous – not content with having a mobile phone that makes a stupid noise everytime it rings, we can expect people to be downloading ‘broomtones’ for their cars. A GWiz with a Ferrari sound-track. A Corsa that plays Girls Aloud in the direction of travel.




2 thoughts on “Silent running

  1. I want to replace my horn with the T-Rex roar from ‘Jurassic Park’!

    Joking aside, those Eco-cars really are unnervingly quiet. I believe there’s been a movement in California to get sound artificially added to them for ‘safety’ in the last few years.

  2. What about high end luxury cars like Jags and Rolls. Their engines are very quiet. In fact some electric cars produce a louder whining noise than these luxury cars. Anyway, most the noise from cars comes from their tyres. Notice the difference in noise levels next to a 20mph road and 50mph road.

    Have the legislators thought of the end result? With so many different noises pedastrians will not know which direction the cars are coming from. That’s why emergency vehicles have the weird sounds.

    Why can’t pedestrians and drivers use their eyes and watch out for each other. A noisy car engine doesn’t help a blind person cross a road unless the car is stopped. Anyway, most of the time cars and pedestrians keep to their seperate lanes. A solution fixing a non problem.

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