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Electric Vehicle Sound (2019)

The application was done with Max/MSP

Why Electric Vehicle Sound?

   Cars’ aesthetic is developed as well as functional when it is newly released. These two are considered at the same time. Because sound for a car has been an essential element to make it luxurious and comfortable, it has been also studied and developed such as a Car Audio Stereo, Noise Control, and even changing a car door latch for reason of the sound quality. Indeed the core topic of vehicle sound is the engine sound, and it is also not very recent that many automotive brands have their own sound teams and have shown their brand image through the engine sound. Likewise sound has so far belonged to aesthetic and preference realm. But now, this fascinating field has now contributed to safety.


Electric cars are quieter than combustion engine cars. Many people were glad to expect quiet streets with the electric cars, but this relative quiet engine sound is able to be much quieter at low speeds and it could be even called ‘silence menace’ for pedestrians, cyclists and animals. Especially for blind and partially sighted people can have more critical problems on the streets or in the parking lots. The active engine sound should be similar with a sound of traditional combustion cars engines, because it is important to be recognized as a car. but it could be actively reduced the bothersome noise that the original engine has had.


By 2020, US regulators will require hybrid and fully-electric vehicles to make sounds when driving up to 18.6 mph. But so far there is no representative electric vehicle sound in the industry. The well-made engine sound could be created by many actual experiments or simulations and proved by the theoretical reasons, why this sound is suitable to be set. 


To me, as a person who wants to study and design sound, it was really attractive that for a product, even if it is not used for sound, sound can give consumers subtle impact to estimate quality about the product. And by far, one of the most attractive one to me was the electric vehicle sound. Since I got to know about the existence of the sound team in the auto brand, I wanted to dedicate myself to sound design for the electric vehicles.

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