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NHTSA wants automakers to pump up the volume on hybrids

GasBuddy Blog -- They're so quiet they're dangerous. That's one of the problems the automotive industry will have to overcome for its all-electric vehicles and hybrids that often run on electric power only.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) said Monday that it is proposing minimum sound standards for hybrid and electric vehicles as a way to make pedestrians more aware of them as they approach.

Because those vehicles don't rely on traditional gas or diesel-powered engines at low speeds, they tend to be much quieter, making them hard to hear given the ambient street noise, says the Detroit Free Press. That's why The proposed standard -- mandated in the Pedestrian Safety Enhancement Act -- would require that the...


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Submitted Jan 10, 2013 By: PD
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REPLIES (newest first) Post a Reply
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garywa01
Sophomore Author Alberta

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Message Posted: Jan 25, 2013 9:08:56 AM

good idea
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honda0105
Champion Author Tallahassee

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Message Posted: Jan 12, 2013 7:58:38 AM

the idea is good. The implementation isn't. 343
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wshutton
Champion Author Albuquerque

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 2:13:06 PM

Let Hollywood sound effects specialists come up with a solution. They always make future vehicles sounds cool! I favor mandating running lights that are on whenever the vehicle is operating too.
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rogerparry
Champion Author Florida

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:59:11 AM

It will help with City noise reduction.
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gobux10
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:58:45 AM

Not too much
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LeeFree
Champion Author Pittsburgh

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:57:08 AM

They should let Darwinism run its course.
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mnrick041
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:56:34 AM

Dumb idea
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cheapertvs
Champion Author Richmond

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:52:52 AM

Perhaps we place flashing signs on them saying warning?
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warlord1
Champion Author Georgia

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:51:26 AM

they are quiet
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chuckohio
Champion Author Columbus

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:49:24 AM

Hybrids are good if the price can come down
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getalong
Champion Author California

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:48:39 AM

sigh
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neptune2008
Champion Author Michigan

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:48:22 AM

haha mrjames!
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vamike
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:48:03 AM

Yesterday's news.
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ILVET
Champion Author Illinois

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:48:00 AM

At what cost?
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mrjames1818
Champion Author New Jersey

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:46:16 AM

It is a safety issue - especially for a blind person
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Petrock
Champion Author Lexington

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:46:04 AM

People just need to WAKE UP!!
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Lengas
Champion Author Gary

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:45:10 AM

People walking should pay more attention instead of texting and talking!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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SBlouch
Champion Author San Antonio

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:44:13 AM

So now we must have cars which make a noise.
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stpetebp
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:44:05 AM

Just a little noise
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Brucevanf
Champion Author New Brunswick

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:41:18 AM

More noise for us all
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skanytank
Champion Author Kentucky

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:41:02 AM

I admit hybrids are exceptionally quiet when crawling along at 5 mph or so and can surprise pedestrians if closeby...just saying...
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Zuman
Champion Author New York

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:39:59 AM

This is more government STUPIDITY.
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kirzon484
Champion Author Atlanta

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:36:19 AM

is noise pollution good or bad
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JLSindy
Champion Author Cleveland

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:36:10 AM

Pedestrians have no responsibility for their own actions and safety?
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rosyLI
Champion Author Long Island

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:36:01 AM

Nothing like looking where you ar going.
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MarAzul
Champion Author London

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:35:05 AM

And the E-scooters...?
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wkb03
Champion Author Georgia

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:32:27 AM

What happen to the old saying: Stop, Look & Listen. (That was before ipads)
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OmieCA
Veteran Author California

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:30:28 AM

You'd think hybrid driver would be a bit more cautious! They're not!
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rjd1608
Champion Author Toledo

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:28:34 AM

more hybrids, less gas, less money for road repair
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P H
Champion Author Albany

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:27:49 AM

Ditch the ipod!
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Maintroll
Champion Author Lexington

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:26:17 AM

And then what about the ones walking around with ear plugs in their ears?
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JCClark2012
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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:25:11 AM

Old news
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Dailyrun
Champion Author Kentucky

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:25:06 AM

sure.
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rwrMO
Champion Author Missouri

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:24:35 AM

Old news
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pfone1847
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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:23:51 AM

Old news
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AvantiMick
Champion Author Indiana

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:22:45 AM

Yeah, speakers in the bumpers playing the Beach Boys continuously!
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Foxt
Champion Author Minnesota

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:17:05 AM

Old news
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gabisgram
Champion Author Michigan

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:16:46 AM

well.....
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74celica
Champion Author Columbus

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:16:36 AM

old news
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mystic92
Champion Author New Jersey

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:12:28 AM

Yesterdays news
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Ziggy1962
Champion Author New Jersey

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:11:59 AM

Old news.
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Bus936
Champion Author Lexington

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:11:28 AM

Always be aware of your surroundings is what I say. Look at trains and how much noise they make, then some idiot walks down the tracks with a headset on and gets hit. Now what kind of thinking is this?
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FrankTA2
Champion Author New York

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:08:54 AM

We don't need more noise.
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bikechuck
Champion Author Indianapolis

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:07:49 AM

People have eyes, use them. Always look both ways, we are not deer.
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Bonanza
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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:06:18 AM

Yesterday's news
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DrCashFlow
Champion Author Massachusetts

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:06:07 AM

Can't wait to hear what the proposed solution is
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NotTom
Champion Author New Hampshire

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:02:30 AM

I will not buy an battery hybrid or electric car. Although electric hybrids are well proven, electric hybrid technology is limited in several ways:

1. Cost.
The cost of second generation batteries that can charge faster, go farther, and last longer are currently prohibitively expensive. Chevrolet has rumored that the Volt battery pack currently costs more than $16,000. Tesla has indicated its battery pack is over $40,000. Both battery systems are rated at 500 cycles—or about 18 months of daily charging before replacement is necessary. Equivalent hydraulic pump/motor and tanks cost $2,500.
2. Charge time.
Charge time not only impacts overall efficiency and utilization, but also how efficient the brake regeneration system is. Toyota currently estimates their brake regeneration system at 30 percent efficiency, while hydraulic brake energy regeneration efficiency is over 80 percent, since hydraulics are not limited by battery charge limits during the regeneration cycle.
3. Battery Weight.
Weight has a dramatic impact on overall transportation efficiency, and even lithium ion battery technologies add significant weight. Toyota’s current battery pack adds 150 pounds to the Prius, the Chevy Volt battery pack is expected to weigh 350 pounds, and Tesla’s battery pack exceeds 1000 pounds. Equivalent storage in carbon fiber tanks weigh 75 pounds.
4. Maintenance talent availability.
Electric hybrid vehicles are highly complex and the DC power can be dangerous if not handled by specifically trained mechanics. There are not a large number of specifically trained mechanics in the US today, and the training requirements are significant. Most fleet mechanics already have training and a strong comfort level with hydraulic technology.

With the current electric hybrid limitations in mind, and recognizing that there are currently no competitors serving the light- and medium-duty hydraulic hybrid space in the automotive or retrofit markets, HHS has designed a Hydraulic Hybrid System for the automotive and fleet vehicle retrofit markets.
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WR-INC
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 5:01:28 AM

The playing card trick would work for both bicycles and electric cars. It also sounds like they're giving the raspberry.
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BoerneWatch
Champion Author San Antonio

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 4:49:37 AM

This is just plain dumb.

What about making cyclists make noise also?
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no_monkey2002
Champion Author Tallahassee

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 4:47:45 AM

keep your eyes on what is going on in the world ....looking in your phone will kill you..day dreaming will kill you..sleep walking will kill you...drinking and drive will kill you...wake up world
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