ELECTRIC VEHICLE WARNING SOUNDS: Electric cars are not ultra-silent!

Apart from the environmental advantages, an electric car does not result in noise pollution. Electric vehicle warning sounds are the sounds designed to alert the pedestrians when the vehicle travels at low speed.

When the engine is on, a gas-powered vehicle produces noises and it marks its presence. But an electric car is silent! An electric motor rotates only when the acceleration pedal is triggered. And the noise from the electric motor is far less than that of an internal combustion engine vehicle.

This is a notable advantage of an electric vehicles. They would not results in much noise pollution in urban areas.

Do we need an electric car warning sound in the vehicle?

Electric vehicle warning sound

Are Electric cars quieter than fossil fuel powered cars?

Yes. They are.

The external noise emitted by a passenger car is limited to 74 dB and many vehicles produce lesser noise than the maximum value.

Vehicle Certification Agency
  • Where does the noise come from vehicles?
  • Engine noise
  • Aerodynamic noise
  • Braking noise
  • Tire-road surface friction noise

Electric cars produce around 3 dB noise when it operates. It’s far lesser than the noise from an internal combustion engine vehicle.

At low speed, an electric vehicle does not produce much noise. And at high speeds (above 30 km/hr) the noise from aerodynamic, and tyre results recognizable sound from an electric car.

In general a conventional car is 2 times louder than electric vehicles.

Electric Vehicle Warning Sound [Video]

Why Electric Vehicle Warning Sounds are important?

Some visually impaired people consider the noise from a vehicle helps out them to identify the presence of the vehicle. The noise from the internal combustion engine vehicle is a helpful aid for them while crossing the streets.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) “Quiet car” rule demands all-electric and hybrid vehicles in the US to make noise when traveling at low speeds.

Pedestrians are 19% more likely to be hit by an electric car than gas-powered cars. And NHTSA estimates that the noise in EV prevents 2400 injuries per year.

The noise in electric cars helps to reduce the collision between electric cars and pedestrians especially when the vehicle travels at low speed (19mph forward or reverse).

European Union, Japan, United Kingdom, etc. have already declared the noise regulations for electric cars.

The artificial noise from the electric car at low speed can be driver triggered or automatic. The common types of noises are the beeps, engine noise, and tire moving over gravel.

Even though electric vehicles are low noise vehicles, they are not going to be ultra silent always.


Electric vehicles are low noise vehicles. At the low speed, they are ultra-silent compared to internal combustion engine vehicles. Electric vehicle warning sounds at low speed helps out the pedestrians (visually impaired people also) to identify the presence of an electric vehicle.

EU, US, Britain, Japan, etc. put regulation on the noise of electric cars at low speed.

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Key points

  • Electric car warning sounds makes it easy to recognize an EV running at low speed by pedestrian
  • An electric car will generate noise when it travels less than 19 mph forward or reverses
  • It would prevent the accidents on the road

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