AVAS Noisemakers Required For EVs By EU
It took six years (see EU Parliament Requires Electric Cars To Make Noise) but the European Union is finally ready to require electric vehicles (EVs) to have an Acoustic Vehicle Alerting System (AVAS).
There will be no sneaking up on pedestrians now.
(From The Office)
Sound must be generated at or below 12 miles per hour.
The new regulations follows concerns that low-emission vehicles such as battery-electric cars are simply too quiet for the road, making them a risk for pedestrians, cyclists, and visually-impaired individuals (among others). According to the new ruling, a car’s Acoustic Vehicle Alert System (AVAS) must be engaged when reversing or traveling below 12 mph (19 km/h).
In its ruling, the EU noted that vehicles usually back up or travel at low speeds in areas that are near people, such as city streets or crosswalks, though the new regulations does allow drivers to deactivate their vehicles’ pedestrian noisemakers as necessary. By 2021, the EU noted that all electric vehicles — not just new models coming to the market — must be equipped with an AVAS.
Quite interestingly, the ruling mentioned that the noise-emitting devices would give EVs a sound that is similar to a “traditional engine,” according to a BBC report. This particular detail is notable, since making electric vehicles sound identical to conventional cars will likely result in some levels of noise pollution, something that EVs completely avoid.
In past comment threads, Technovelgy readers selected the sounds that they would like to hear; see What Should A Hybrid Sound Like?.
In his 1985 novel The Cat Who Walks Through Walls, Robert Heinlein introduces the idea of an automotive sound tape for otherwise silent cars.
... with its Shipstone [power source] concealed and a sound tape to supply the noise of a soi-disant "IC" engine, the difference between a working replica and a real "automobile" was not readily apparent.
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