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  • BAD BAD BAD BAD BAD BAD: This might be the most dreadful idea in American Business since… well… the idea of selling different telephone rings for 99 cents: “So safety experts, worried that hybrids pose a threat if pedestrians, children and others can’t hear them approaching, want automakers to supply some digitally enhanced vroom. Indeed, just as cellphones have ring tones, ‘car tones’ may not be far behind — an option for owners of electric vehicles to choose the sound their cars emit.” Oh, yeah, this is an old idea, it’s very popular in HELL. [NYT via Balloon Juice]
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81 COMMENTS

  1. You just KNOW that there will be cars playing the fight songs from sports teams, trucks with Confederate flags in the window playing Proud to Be an American, neo-hippies with Grateful Dead songs going, etc.

    Very very bad idea.

  2. As an overweight, greying, 48 year old white man with two kids and a mortgage, I am torn between “Fight the Power” or “The Humpty Dance” as my car tone. Maybe Beyonce’s Put a Ring (tone) On It?

    Or, if I had a hybrid, and was a smug NPR listener, I’d just crank up All Things Considered, with enough bass to rattle the windows. That’ll do it.

  3. Of all the things that could turn me into a murderer. Do you really what to give this sort of functionality to the kind of ass-clown that buys trucknutz?

  4. [re=434332]Terry[/re]:

    trucks with Confederate flags in the window playing Proud to Be an American

    Students, there is a logical fallacy in this statement. Can anyone tell me what it is?

  5. Other people’s annoying cell phones are bad enough – and this guy wants to make it louder and all over the streets? No. I can just imagine all the teenage girls blaring the latest Disney pop crap down the street. [re=434332]Terry[/re]: Though I wouldn’t worry about the rednecks; none of them would be caught dead driving a hybrid. Same for most sports fanatics. The hippies, though, would be a problem.

  6. If you live near a highway would you prefer the soothing white noise of cars constantly zooming by or a cacophony of car tones sounding like a high school locker area between classes at 100 decibels?

    Bruce Barry was a workin’ man
    He used to load that Econoline

  7. Hey, don’t forget the deaf people. Along with the digitally-enhanced vroom, there should be some sort of flashing lights going at all times, too. Or hell, just make everybody drive a freaking ice cream truck, and we can all have that Casio version of “Pop Goes the Weasel” running through our heads all the time. What could possibly go wrong?

  8. I think we need them all to make a clopclopclop sound like a horse and buggy. Then maybe they can add scent to the exhaust, and the streets can smell like old London.

  9. This is a no brainer, the NHTA should MANDATE that hybrids all emit a loud 60 hz buzz. The buzz should increase slightly in pitch and volume with greater speed. A loud chirping, similar to an alarm clock should sound when the vehicle is set to reverse.

    As an additional safety/warning device, Hybrids should also contain a poweful, built in Van de Graf generator to make the pedestrians hair rise.

  10. [re=434335]Snarkalicious[/re]: In fairness, I think the kind of ass-clown that buys a Prius is very different from the kind of ass-clown that buys trucknutz. Except, perhaps, ironically.

  11. Neighbors and dogs and cats and beasts in the forest are always sneaking up on me. Now I gotta worry about cars too.

    [re=434343]JMP[/re]: I’m going with Jefferson Airplane, alternating with Little Douch Coup.

  12. [re=434360]Doglessliberal[/re]: [re=434364]Formerly Preferred[/re]: [re=434361]Johnny Zhivago[/re]:
    So many boxes to check on the options list when ordering my new Prius Chevy Volt!

  13. This is just like when they made a rule that digital cameras hadda have some kinda ‘click’ noise to indicate a pic had been snapped. Perverts everywhere were up in arms, I guess.

    My “hybrid soundtrack” would be All men play on 10 by Manowar.

  14. I do research in India, where custom car horns are everywhere and you can’t walk down the street without hearing a tone-deaf pneumatic-powered version of the theme song from the latest bad action movie. They’re entertaining most of the time, actually, but every once in a while two or more cars with horns tuned differently will honk at once and you’ll swear the gates of hell are opening.

    Now imagine this is a constant noise rather than a horn, and that there are dozens of them at once. Mmm! I think deafness is preferable.

    Also, John Cage is probably wetting himself over the idea of recording this right now.

  15. [re=434358]magic titty[/re]: darwinian selection can take care of those. and whatever the hell happened to horns and rolling down the window? you know, “beep-beep, get the fuck outta the way, you moron!” it made america great.

  16. [re=434330]user-of-owls[/re]: Ha!

    But seriously folks, I’ve driven a hybrid, and the fucking thing was so quiet I had a hard time figuring out if it was on or not. These mutant mute vehicles will destroy us all.

  17. I love that my hybrid makes it easier for me to smush unsuspecting pedestrians. Less sporting, perhaps, but definitely more effective.

  18. There’s actually a very good reason why this sort of thing won’t develop, and it’s a safety one. In addition to being the most obnoxious thing in history, car tones could drown out the sounds of various emergency vehicle sirens. The government should ban car tones, for being dumb, and they have a fantastic excuse to do so.

  19. Oh my ****. As I read aout this I felt the world suddenly fall apart.
    Seriously? How about finding an alternative solution to this annoying problem- by googling “Bub Rubb and Lil Sis”.

  20. They should blast a 113 Hz sound for three seconds, and then blast a 136 Hz for another three seconds, a la the Tripods in Steven Spielberg’s War of the Worlds.

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