When EVs first came to market one of the big things that people liked about them was that they are quiet. That means no revving motors and droning exhaust in your neighborhood. It because apparent not long after EVs landed that the silence was an issue for the visually impaired and distracted pedestrians. Some EVs started to use a sound to warn that the near-silent rides were coming.
Regulations in the US will require EVs to make noise to warn pedestrians at speeds up to 18.5mph stating in 2020, assuming regulations aren’t delayed again. Chevy put an always-on sound in the Volt starting in 2015 and the first Volts had a sound the driver had to activate.
The 2019 Volt has a better solution to silence that sounds like the noise a hovering alien ship would make. The odd humming sound can be heard in the tweet below. It’s not exactly an annoying sound, but we wouldn’t choose to listen to it.
Such noise would be very annoying for drivers if they had to listen to it all the time. Chevy claims that the sound is designed to not reach the driver’s ears. The sound output is linked to the gear selection of the vehicle and speed.
That means the faster the ride goes, the louder the sound gets. The Volt is the only Chevy to get the feature for now, but with the Bolt also being dead silent, that ride seems destined to get the noisemaker as well.