Hyundai Mobis develops world’s first virtual engine sound system for EVs
Hyundai Mobis, the auto parts supplier of the Hyundai Motor Group, claims to have developed the world’s first virtual engine sound system called Acoustic Vehicle Alert Sound using the grill cover of the electric vehicle.
The system was created by using the grille cover to place the speaker system. Generally all electric vehicles have a completely blocked front grille unlike a combustion engine car that has an open-type grille in the front. This allowed the company to use the cover as component of the speakers.
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The system produces a sound outside of the vehicle so that pedestrians can sense an oncoming car that emits almost no noise. As electric vehicles don’t use combustion engines, which normally make loud sounds when turned on, there have been concerns that the quietness of driving them threatens the safety of people on the road.
“Hyundai Mobis succeeded in reducing the weight by 2/3 and the size by half," said Kim Tae-woo, Head of IVI Product Design Team 2 of Hyundai Mobis. “We simplified the structure and lowered the price by reducing the number of components by more than half, and eliminated the bracket or housing, which fastens different devices, to easily secure space."
The company said the virtual engine sound system can be used as a speaker for music as well, a useful feature for outdoor activities like camping.
The company said the related technology has been in development since 2018, while two related patents have also been registered.
“As cars become developed in the future, customers have expectations toward improved convenience and safety functions of a car. We also expected that there will be more demand and interest among car manufacturers about enabling active communication from inside to outside the car," said Kim Tae-woo, Hyundai Mobis vice president of in-vehicle infotainment engineering group.