Prius Gets Louder To Protect Pedestrians

by Ally

It’s hard not to be shocked by how quiet a Prius is once it’s switched over to running on electric at low speeds.  There is virtually no sound coming from the car, which should make it no surprise that hybrid vehicles suffered from higher percentages of being involved in a low speed pedestrian accident compared to gas-powered vehicles. When you’re crossing the road or walking along it, you rely just as much on your ears as you do your sight.  Having a car on the road that makes no sound can make roads more dangerous, which is why Toyota is offering a speaker system that makes a whirring sound.

The whirring sound is meant to sound similar in volume to a normal car engine. It’s becoming available in Japan for the newest Prius and will also be offered for any new hybrids from Toyota.  You can buy the system for about $150.  I’m not sure if a whole lot of drivers will be rushing out to spend the money after they’ve already bought the car.  Just like how you never remember you need new wiper blades until it’s raining, it’d take a close call to get a lot of people motivated enough.  However, if they already have it installed on the car I imagine it’d make drivers feel better.  It would put a bit of a damper on your day if you accidentally hit someone.

Source: EcoGeek

4 reviews or comments

Brian Says: September 11, 2010 at 9:28 am

My view on this is its a waste of money. Everyone is taught to look before crossing the street then they were a kid. The rules haven’t changed. If you get hit is your fault….well at least thats my POV. To many people put the blame on others for there own ignorance.

hukiworld Says: September 11, 2010 at 6:44 pm

Bob you are correct 100% these vehicles are not causing more accidents, it’s all politics and advertising to make people BELIEVE they need it to feel safer. If your a cautious driver, you will always look where your driving and backing up into and those people walking behind the car do see the back-lights when a car is in reverse sound or no sound. It’s basic common sense from both parties, drivers and pedestrians.

Most the reports here are not researched enough to make them valid in ANY sense of the word. But when someone here does “try” to talk as if they know what their talking about, they really should do a little research first.

AWESOME JOB BOB!!! You can be sure I am not buying that pointless gadget.

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