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Back-up sound generation

Discussion in 'Model 3' started by arjay, May 13, 2016.

  1. arjay

    arjay member

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    Maybe I'm moving fully into my Ed Asner stage of life, but I am concerned about running over people in parking lots. We have a 2006 Prius that generates a beep-beep-beep sound when backing up...except that it is only audible inside the car, not outside (go figure). We also have a MB B-class EV which is always in silent running mode (zero sound) when backing-up. The zero sound is very compelling, but seems a bit dangerous.

    Do any of you share my paranoia, and if so what are the possibilities for types of sounds, eg; I think they could be pre- programmed, or app accessed like ringtones, or no messing around just NTSB approved. I do favor the beep- beep-beep sound as it is universally known for backing-up. When backing out of a tight parking space at a grocery store with all ages wandering and darting about, it seems only prudent to give some warning to them while I'm concentrating on exiting and focussed on the front as well as the rearview camera.

    Any thoughts?
     
  2. arjay

    arjay member

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    Thoughts other than hanging it up, that is.
     
  3. gregincal

    gregincal Active Member

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    I haven't noticed any more problems in parking lots with my Model S than any ICE car. Pedestrians can be pretty clueless either way. I've long wished for a pedestrian alert horn that isn't as obnoxious as the normal horn. However, I find I need it more ofter driving forward than backing up, so I don't like the idea of an always on backup sound.
     
    • Like x 1
  4. Az_Rael

    Az_Rael Active Member

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    My Volt doesn't make any noise when backing up either. I find that with a backup camera and rear parking sensors, I am not in any danger of hitting pedestrians. It gets a bit annoying sometimes as I wait for them to obliviously walk by, but my sensors and my camera have let me know folks were back there every time.

    The Volt does have a pedestrian alert horn for when you are crawling behind some clueless folks as well.
     
  5. Jason Bourne

    Jason Bourne Member

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    I've never owned an EV, but I don't see much point in a backup alarm for EVs. There are plenty of ICE cars with engines so quiet, you can't hear them when they are idling (it's rare that any driver applies any significant throttle while reversing out of a parking spot). So what's the material difference between an ICE car that quiet enough that you can't really hear anything and a silent car? Rear cameras and radar/sonar are much more practical safety features IMO.

    But the most effective safety feature is an attentive driver who can maneuver his body/eyes to be able to see everything. Some drivers don't even swivel their head while reversing.
     
  6. jsrawa

    jsrawa Member

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    I own a Volt and the whole EV sound generation thing is a farce in my opinion. New ICEs aren't roaring through parking lots or out of driveways. Why ruin the peacefulness of an EV, I really feel the risk is minimal especially with other safety features available now.
     
  7. JeffK

    JeffK Active Member

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    I believe they were going to make some kind of law regarding low speed EVs and a mandatory noise.
     
  8. arjay

    arjay member

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    Clueless pedestrians can also be pretty litigious. I like the idea of 2 sounds and I suppose it would be easy enough to have the sound type change with the direction of motion.
     
  9. Xminus6

    Xminus6 Member

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    I only had one occasion where it would have helped. I was getting back in my car from dropping my kid at day care. Two moms were charting next to one of their cars, which was parked next to mine.

    They did see me get into the car but didn't mine because they didn't hear an engine start. They were in between her car and mine. I sat there for a bit then rolled down the window to ask them to move.

    They joked that that's what I get for driving an electric car. Pretty innocuous scene but kinda funny.
     
  10. wrf2e

    wrf2e Member

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    I don't know about having a sound every time you go in reverse, but I would like to have a different sound other than the horn. My mother trains truck drivers for a living and taught me to use a quick tap of the horn followed by a friendly wave to alert others who may potentially get in your path (pedestrians, cars coming from a cross street that aren't paying attention etc) but most people take offense if you honk at them.

    She also taught me to always back into a parking space to make it safer when pulling back out into traffic so I don't frequently find myself backing out.
     
  11. wallet.dat

    wallet.dat Member

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    Just roll down your window and yell out "beep-beep-beep-beep!" when you back up. That's what my toddler and I do :)
     
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  12. Att1cus

    Att1cus Member

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    LOL only because I can relate.

    Agreed.
     
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  13. HWF 1st EV

    HWF 1st EV Member

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    Please read Jason's reply, #5. He's right on the money. My BMW 5 series is nearly silent at idle, about 700 rpm. When backing out of a parking spot, the rpm's are probably no more than 725 rpm, and the engine is still silent.
     
  14. arjay

    arjay member

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    Just one bad pedestrian incident can ruin your whole day whether EV or ICE. I guess my concern is that I'm looking in the rear view monitor, the mirror(s), the front corners of my car AND swiveling my head. It would seem a gentle, low speed, low volume beep-beep-beep is a small price to pay for suspenders and a belt.

    I do agree completely that the silent running aspect of an EV is magical, so I agree the price is quite steep for the diminished magic of the trade-off...Oh well.
     
  15. JeffK

    JeffK Active Member

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    There are some people who you're just going to hit anyway regardless of audible or visual warning. It'll be someone texting or listening to music while texting and walking through a parking lot.


    I wouldn't mind a sound that I can purposely turn on or off. There are parking lots/garages that I feel like I need it and there are others that it'd be more of an annoyance.
     
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  16. malcolm

    malcolm Active Member

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    Might be a slight improvement if the system is engineered to be GPS and time-of-day related so that you can choose to activate it at certain places when and where pedestrian densities are higher - and the car remembers your choice for, say, the weekly grocery run.

    Also GPS can switch in the pedestrian alert as the main car horn in urban areas (but a sudden input on the brake + horn could override this and activate the much louder car horn). Out of town/above a certain speed it's always the louder option.
     
  17. Kristian G

    Kristian G Member

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    I'm for it, but ONLY if you can turn it off.
    I drive a pretty silent ICE car now, and pedestrians don't hear me either so I'm use to it, and wouldn't want a audible warning every time i was out grocery shopping.
     
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  18. ZAKEEUS

    ZAKEEUS Member

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    I wouldn't mind that, it could even turn on automatically if it detects motion behind the vehicle.
     
  19. HWF 1st EV

    HWF 1st EV Member

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    Instead of a switch to turn the beeping on and off, why not simply tap your horn when your about to back out of a spot.
     
  20. malcolm

    malcolm Active Member

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    Of course - it's like the GPS auto-raising the air suspension (if fitted). You can override it if you want to. The pedestrian noise, that is.
     

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