I am pleased to see this. We have electric cars, which come round the blind bend in the heart of our tiny village - had a few near misses with locals/elderly. Folk are used to hearing traffic and getting out of the way…
We have a hybrid and in quiet mode I always drive very carefully. Many a time I’ve sat behind people walking in a lane and they haven’t heard me, I don’t like to use the horn lest they think I’m impatient. The trickiest was behind a horse, I knew from his body language that although he couldn’t hear us he sensed something behind. My husband urged me to go past but he doesn’t know horses like me so I refused. Suddenly the horse attempted to bolt right where our car would have been if I’d driven past. A good thing husband had partaken of a pint as otherwise he may have been the driver!
It was agreed a couple of years ago, all EV’s including those already on the road were supposed to be modified.
Get some smart kid to hack the sound file and change it to a V12 Ferrari
Next I hope they do the same to push bikes, especially in cities like London
The kids around here fix something to the spokes and they make a right racket when they cycle around…
We used to do that, raid Mum’s clothes pegs and the cards that came with PG tips
The first thing my brother and SiL mentioned whilst test driving an electric car (last year) ‘It is too quiet’
The salesman told there was a ‘switch’ if they wanted some noise. This was more about confidence that the car was actually running rather than safety to pedestrians!
You still have road noise, and wind noise if your eyes can’t tell you you are moving
I’ve just realized that the electric cars will only make a noise at a certain speed and when reversing.
0-19kh and the sound comes on - that is not good enough. (Hit 20kh and the sound goes off)
Sadly, at the moment electric cars arrive (silently) round the blind bend at 50+kh although it is clearly marked 30kh.
Thus even new cars will be silent at 30kh unless the law is amended to make cars “noisy” whatever. grrrr (a silent growl)
I’ve heard there’s a growing market for software you can download to your electric car so instead of engine noise it will deliver to unwary pedestrians and afternoon shoppers a playlist of grime ditties, Tibetan chants, gentle windchimes, the sound of leather on willow, people clapping and calling out “Well played, sir!”, Lark Rising by Vaughan Williams, The Dambusters’ March etc.
British techie brilliance at its post-Brexit best, in fact.
Sadly folk do not associate larks rising - to the sound of a car engine… and I do not think they would react appropriately.
We used to have larks in the field beside our house in UK. It was a real pleasure to watch them scuttling along the furrows - and their song as they flew higher and higher 'til disappearing from sight - that was wonderful to hear.
@Stella “Sadly folk do not associate larks rising - to the sound of a car engine… and I do not think they would react appropriately”.
No doubt that’s the case. But I think Vaughan Williams scored Lark Ascending (my wrong attribution) for a 30-piece symphony orchestra, so if that was coming round the bend on wheels it might have turned their heads, Stella
Tweet tweet, beep beep.
Ha Peter you were thinking of Lark Rise to Candleford I suspect
Need to restring and retune my lute, Véro, must be the heat, everything’s sagging
I love Giles Coren, who writes in The Times. His answer to this ‘noise’ question was to say ‘what noise’?
And he is quite right, if we were starting again from scratch, would we really choose the horrid noice of a car engine? His suggestion was returning to the good old horse and cart, and having ‘clip clop’ noises.
I totally agree with him! Let’s find a ‘noise’ we all want to hear a lot of…
How about a remote vehicle-mounted ‘stun-gun’ linked to pavement sensors in pedestrian areas, picking up the presence of small or slow-moving individuals moving towards the road.
This is almost not beyond the ingenuity of digital engineers to deliver
The level of stun delivered would only incapacitate the subject to the extent of preventing forward movement into zone of danger: a momentary paralysis, but no loss of muscle tone that might cause the pedestrian to fall over; and delivering only a tingling feeling as well as temporary immobility.
The only problem I foresee is that some individuals might experience the stun as pleasurable, and develop a kind of addiction. This could clog the pavements with drop-outs getting their fix, or not dropping-out as the case may be !
You need to patent this idea very quickly. As I have a hybrid car you can ride shotgun and test it out on market day when people are least attentive whilst shopping.
You’ve got me thinking @Teresaship and I shall work on refinements e.g. face-recognition so the level of stun could be adjusted to the jay-walking tendencies of marketeers and their dozy customers.
Meanwhile your offer of a test run is most encouraging, but my mock-up of a vehicle- mounted remote stun-gun would require a vehicle the size of a bendy-bus, a crew of three technicians, plus the attendance of a brigade of sauveurs-pompiers in case of fatalities on the nursery slopes of the essential in-vivo research.