From 1 July, all new four-wheeled electric vehicles in the European Union must be retrofitted with a noise-emitting device to alert pedestrians and cyclists of its vicinity.
The Acoustic Vehicle Alert System, or AVAS will start emitting the noise when the car is driving below 19km/h. The rules were put in place because at that speed, the electric vehicles are nearly silent, which ironically pose a safety issue on the roads, as people are caught unaware of its approach.
As per the new rules, by 2021 all new electric and hybrid vehicles sold in the EU must emit noise when moving slowly. Moreover, existing vehicles need to be retrofitted with such a device in the coming two years.
Vehicle noise is a leading cause of noise pollution in the cities. Electric cars could still change that. However, when it comes it narrower streets where the cars will have to drive slowly, it seems that it’s noise will not bring residents any peace.
People who love cars, like the engine revving sound. Will this noise emission attract them to enjoy driving more, or will it become an irksome annoyance?