Here is yet another way car audio may adapt to electric vehicles (EVs). Borla Exhaust is providing aftermarket audio kits that add engine noise sounds to an EV (as EVs are super-quiet).
The kit is essentially a loaded subwoofer enclosure with DSP and an amplifier, which has been specially tuned for a specific vehicle. Then, when the driver steps on the accelerator, they get a realistic combustion engine-like sound.
Borla will offer these systems to car audio dealers as well as automotive performance dealers, David Borla, VP Sales & Marketing for Borla Performance Industries told CEoutlook.
Called Borla Active Performance Sound, the audio system includes 6×9 speakers (or other sizes), an amplifier, Digital Signal Processor, wiring harness and brackets. It can mount like a muffler under the vehicle.
The unit uses the information coming from the CAN BUS of a vehicle to know when the car is accelerating, climbing a hill, etc. “…wheel speed, throttle position, load on the engine. As we dug deeper we realized these are inputs that change the sound on an internal combustion motor….” Borla told the CarCast podcast. The company takes the CAN BUS information and applies an algorithm to it in order mimic the sound you would expect coming from a vehicle under various driving conditions, such as going hard into a curve or a shift point. “Electric vehicles don’t have shift points, so we created them,” Borla said.
Drivers also get to personalize the system so that your Ford Mustang MACH-E can sound unique.
“Sound is not going away…it’s an important part of the driving experience,” Borla said.
The first model, due in October, will work with the MACH-E. It will be followed by a version for the Ford F150 Lightning. The plan is to offer versions for many vehicles. Pricing has not yet been announced.
Borla said the company considered also applying an engine audio kit to the car’s interior but found there was no need. “The sound is so prevalent outside, you can hear it in the car,” said Borla.