Car manufacturers admit that they fake the throaty rumble of their products' engines, using tricks like hidden amplifiers or even playing digital soundfiles when you depress the gas pedal.
For the 2015 Mustang EcoBoost, Ford sound engineers and developers worked on an “Active Noise Control” system that amplifies the engine’s purr through the car speakers. Afterward, the automaker surveyed members of Mustang fan clubs on which processed “sound concepts” they most enjoyed.
Ford said in a statement that the vintage V-8 engine boom “has long been considered the mating call of Mustang,” but added that the newly processed pony-car sound is “athletic and youthful,” “a more refined growl” with “a low-frequency sense of powerfulness.”
Among purists, the trickery has inspired an identity crisis and cut to the heart of American auto legend. The “aural experience” of a car, they argue, is an intangible that’s just as priceless as what’s revving under the hood.
America’s best-selling cars and trucks are built on lies: The rise of fake engine noise [Drew Harwell/Washington Post]
(Image: Ford Flathead V8, Insomnia Cured Here, CC-BY-SA)
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