The signature roar of a Ferrari will survive the shift to electric under plans being developed by the Italian supercar maker.
Ferrari has patented a method of reproducing the sound of its high-performance petrol and diesel engines as they are revved up in electric models.
The manufacturer says the technology will help preserve the “driving pleasure” of its sports cars as they move to electric.
Battery-powered vehicles make virtually no sound when the accelerator is pressed and performance carmakers have been fretting over how to maintain the personality of their creations. It comes as governments around the world legislate to ban the sale of new petrol cars in years to come.
While luxury car makers who often cater to chauffeur-driven clients are likely to embrace the silence of an electric engine as a selling point, sports cars built by Ferrari and its peers are sought after in part because of their noise and excitement.
Harnessing the sounds of moving parts
It would be easy to record an existing combustion engine in action and play back the noise through speakers, but Ferrari has opted to create a new sound that harnesses the moving parts of an electric car, according to a patent it filed earlier this month in the US.
The Italian car marque will amplify sounds from the electric motor and drivetrain, adjusting the note and volume to correlate with the power being delivered to mimic the effect of a petrol engine, according to the filing, first reported by US car website Carbuzz.
As well as sound being delivered into the cabin, it could also be piped outside the vehicle, the patent said, recreating the roar of a sports car accelerating down a road.
Germany’s BMW and Dodge in the US are also working on ways of bringing high-performance EVs to life. Dodge has recreated the throaty thrum of its gas-guzzling muscle cars for its Charger EV, with volumes approaching rock concert levels.