Designing the Fake Noises Electric Cars Make

Have you ever been startled when an electric car snuck up on you while you were walking? That happened to me about ten years ago. I was on a sidewalk, but I immediately thought of what would happen if a cat or a kid were in the road. We are just plain used to loud car engines. So auto manufacturers started adding noises to cars, even though they don't need them to function. But when the sound is superfluous to the vehicle's function, those sounds don't have to mimic a combustion engine. What sounds should a car have to be the safest for pedestrians, cyclists, and animals? Car companies are working with audio engineers and sound designers to perfect the sounds of a quiet car for optimum safety while trying not to annoy everyone who hears them. -via Digg

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