Electric Sports Car, Fake Engine Sound...

Fisker Automotive is the one of several niche automakers trying to make electric (or hybrid-electric) sports cars happen as a product. However, they've noticed that one part of the experience of traditional sports cars is missing - according to an article in Forbes Autos: the electric motor "is completely silent, Fisker says, which might worry pedestrians with bad eyesight and disappoint sports car freaks keen to hear the roar of their machines." Nice of him to list the safety concerns of the handicapped first, but I don't buy it - he's mostly worried that without a suitably intimidating sound, the car won't be as able to supplement its would-be drivers' masculinity. The solution? Fake engine sounds, pumped out of electric speakers both inside and outside the vehicle. Asked if it's just a gimmick, Fisker responds that "most car makers already tinker with the sound of the engine." This is true - the exhaust pipe designs are tuned to produce tones that will appeal to drivers - but internal-combustion cars are still using the actual engine to make the sound! Having to resort to canned revving is a whole different beast, and one that's likely to offend those paying a high price for what they expect to be a premium, and genuine, product. It's like fake air intakes on cars - if you can tell it's fake, the credibility of whole product gets dragged down with it.
[via Gizmodo]

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