What Should A Hybrid Sound Like?

Hybrid cars are feared for their silent, stealthy approach - in parking lots and on city streets. No one has been hurt, but that doesn't keep worry warts everywhere (not to mention trial lawyers) from thinking about it.

What sound should a silent electric car make?


(Quiet hybrid video)

Lotus, the maker of fine racing cars, thinks it has the answer.

Its ideas division, which works with other manufacturers, has used a Toyota Prius to synthesise the sound of a traditional engine which is then emitted through a loudspeaker mounted near the radiator.

It projects a realistic engine sound ahead of the car when it is running solely in electric mode and the sound changes depending on speed and throttle. The driver cannot hear any of the additional noise.

One of the people who commented on the original article opined "Wait ten years. Young louts will have electric cars with GIANT speakers. True, the cars will only get a mile per charge but that won't be the point, will it?" Then, the problem will be scaring the blind half to death, along with the rest of us.

Actually, I think this is a rather unimaginative approach. Now, what should a car sound like?

Fred Flintstone's feet?

How about the Jetson's car?

Do hybrid cars simply materialize next to you in a parking lot? How about a sound like the Star Trek transporter?

Update 11-May-2009: Found it! A reader left a comment that was almost right. In his 1985 novel The Cat Who Walks Through Walls, science fiction Grandmaster Robert Heinlein describes a replica Model T that is powered silently, but has a distinctive sound. See the entry for car sound tape. And thanks to reader Rod who almost had it, putting me on the right track. End update.

From Mail on Sunday; thanks to Moira for the tip on this story.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 8/13/2008)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 15 )

Related News Stories - (" Transportation ")

AutoX Sets Up Asia's Largest Robotaxi Center
'The robot cab seemed to know where it was going and, no doubt, the master machine from which it received its signals knew.' - Robert Heinlein, 1951.

Einride Remote Operator Controls Multiple Vehicles
'...some bored drone pusher in a remote driving centre has got your life - and half a dozen other lives - in his hands.' - Charles Stross, 2007.

Hardt Hyperloop Fast Transit In A Can
'...my method will draw the cars forward by an inductive action that is capable of providing tremendous speeds.' - Harl Vincent, 1929.

Drone Swarm Lifts Truck - Not!
'It was now the season that these Birds were wont to take their flight away...' - Francis Godwin, 1638.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

PRAM Solar Powered Satellite Hardware Tested In Orbit
'Our beams feed these worlds energy drawn from... the Sun'

3D Printed Glass Uses Stereolithography Techniques
'All that with glass...'

Science Fiction Helps Young Readers Build Resiliency
'Reading science fiction and fantasy can help readers make sense of the world.'

I Want My 1928 Telestereo Hologram Now
'Instantly there appeared standing upon the disk, the image of a man...'

Memes Now Come From Neural Nets
'Your order said for him to be able to be able to work out twists on the gags in the file...'

Robot Dog Learns To Be Doggy From Real Dogs
'So we took pictures of Guzub making a Three Planets, and I could construct this one to do it exactly right down to the thousandth of a second.'

Unwanted Cruise Ships Huddle Together Out At Sea
'On the screen they passed in an endless, boundaryless flood of green specks...'

Sono Sion Electric Car Charges As You Drive
'It drew its power from six square yards of sunpower screens on its low curved roof.'

News Mood Filter Web Extension
'He adjusted the n, the r and b knobs, and hopefully anticipated a turn for the better...'

Fetal Lamb Rests In Artificial Womb
'... stewing warm on their cushion of peritoneum and gorged with blood-surrogate and hormones, the foetuses grew and grew...'

MIT Wants To Catch Interstellar Visitors
'INVESTIGATE MYSTERIOUS OBJECT ENTERING NEW CALEDONIA SYSTEM FROM NORMAL SPACE'

AutoX Sets Up Asia's Largest Robotaxi Center
'The robot cab seemed to know where it was going and, no doubt, the master machine from which it received its signals knew.'

E - Ink's Automatic Self Styling Color-Changing Dress
'The racks of gowns itched and quivered, their colors running into blurred pools.'

Soft Robots Use Kirigami Piezoelectric Sensor Skin
'A worthy opponent was the golem.'

Bosch Smartglasses Laser Paints AR Image On Your Retina
'Soon we'll be testing a system that projects directly on the retina of the eye.'

Maybe We Could Hibernate Until The Covid-19 Pandemic's End
'Cold-rest was a common last resort therapy for functional psychoses.'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.