EU calls for EV sound

An EU directive has decreed that all new electric and hybrid cars in Europe will have to emit a noise by July 2019.

This will be the case whenever cars are travelling at less than 20mph. After that the directive says the noise of the tyres will be sufficient.

Existing EV and hybrid cars are not likely to be retrofitted.

Chris Hanson-Abbott, an adviser to the UN working group on quiet road transport vehicles, said, ‘The object is to have warnings which are audible but which are not the least bit environmentally disturbing.’

In the UK, registrations of EVs have risen from 3,500 in 2013 to 140,000, with research suggesting cyclists are 40% more likely to be hit by an EV than a traditional one.