Electric Vehicles Aren't Noisy Enough Says EU

By Shabana Arif on at

Electric cars are quiet. Too quiet. And so the EU is enforcing a new regulation that will see all new electric vehicles fitted with a noisemaker that sounds like a traditional car engine.

According to the new rule that's coming into action today, all new electric cars must include an acoustic vehicle alert system (AVAS) that will generate noise when reversing or going below 12mph (19km/h), as these instances are likely to occur in scenarios where pedestrians are around. The idea is that by 2021, AVAS will be on all new electric vehicles.

The decision is ultimately up to the driver however, who will be able to override the AVAS and shut up their car when they feel all that noise isn't needed.

BBC Radio 5 Live's Twitter account shared some of the possible noises we might be subject to that are less car engine and more Casio keyboard, so that's fun. You can have a little listen below:

The decision has received mixed reactions with some people saying that it's just noise pollution and defeats the point of electric cars, while others think the vehicles should make noises at all times, like non-electric cars, as it could pose a problem for the visually impaired to have silent cars gliding about the roads ready to ambush pedestrians.

"The benefits of green transport to be felt by everyone" said roads minister, Michael Ellis. "This new requirement will give pedestrians added confidence when crossing the road."

With the UK on the road to banning the sale of all petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2040, the regulations around electric vehicles need top be hashed out whilst there's still the luxury of time. [BBC News]

Feature image credit: Tesla