Electric cars unlike those powered by combustion engines do not make any noise. Hence, pedestrians and other motorists are less likely to be aware about the impending approach of an electric car. The vehicles also do not offer sufficient feedback to the drivers during acceleration and deceleration. This is where Kendrion Kuhnke, a German firm which has worked as a technology partner of the automobile industry for many years comes in.
The company specializes in systems that give vehicles sound profiles to match the character of cars. More countries are slowly phasing out internal combustion engine powered cars and encouraging the use of electric cars. A sporty looking car which is powered by an electric engine can still have a sporty sound profile though the engine does not really make any noise. This will make the roads safer for pedestrians and cyclists as well as other motorists, who will be able to detect the approach of an electric car.
Called an Acoustic Vehicle Alerting System (AVAS), this new variant of vehicle sound-systems is designed especially for electric vehicles and is basically a special sound actuator which acts as a seismic transducer. It makes the entire outer surface of the vehicle vibrate, generating an acoustic profile similar to that of conventional vehicles. These soundwaves are perceived mainly outside the vehicle, but they also contribute to the acoustic environment inside. The sound also changes in relation to the vehicle’s speed, acceleration and deceleration. It is mandatory for all new electric vehicles launched from 2019 to be equipped with such a sound system.
Kendrion Kuhnke’s compact systems in electric vehicles conform not only to the latest legal requirements for speed-related acoustics but also mask all the ambient noise that is more noticeable due to the missing engine noise. They provide an ambient sound that contributes to the overall experience of driving an electric vehicle. The driver gets audible feedback while driving and manufacturers can modify the sound designs to change both the internal and external sound characteristics of each model.
Hamid Moaref has always been fascinated by cars and the automotive industry. His family has a longstanding association with the industry and has been in the tire business for the past 35 years. Raised in Dubai, Hamid attended Capilano University in Vancouver where he graduated with a BBA in marketing before attending an intensive course in magazine publishing in 2005. He has been the publisher and chief editor of Tires & Parts magazine for the past ten years.
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