Autovolt Magazine

Quiet, Calm and Happiness Attainable by Driving an EV

The Go Ultra Low campaign has released new research data which shows 70% of motorists believe a quieter cabin helps improve their mood and reduces stress during time spent in a car. The finding backs up the idea that electric vehicle journeys, which are renowned for their quiet interior due to the lack of any significant drivetrain noise, can help keep both driver and passengers happier. For decades, noise insulation has been of primary importance for vehicles such as limousines and high-end business executive machines. Today, similar or even improved levels of acoustic serenity can be obtained in a far cheaper electric vehicle.

The research was released today by the Go Ultra Low campaign, set up by the UK automotive industry and the public sector to highlight the benefits of ultra low emissions vehicles (ULEVs).

Car manufacturers in the Go Ultra Low consortium performed tests that showed interior noise levels of electric vehicles and their conventionally-powered equivalents can vary by up to 6dB(A) – a significantly audible difference.

The new research also found that 74% of the UK’s car-driving population above 30 years-old desire “more ‘quiet time’ in everyday life”, with 83% of the same group believing that “Britain is a much nosier place compared with 10 years ago”.

Commenting on the findings, motoring journalist Quentin Willson said:

“When you start driving an electric vehicle the first thing you notice is the quietness of the cabin. Rather than it being a novelty, this can have a positive effect on your well-being. We all know how stressful car travel can be – I’ve found the electric motor can turn journeys into a zen-like experience!”

Go Ultra Low line-up

According to noise experts, fluctuations in sound levels can have a real impact on our emotions. Professor Duncan Williams, psycho-acoustician at Plymouth University, said,

“Many of the sounds people find most annoying and stressful are dynamic – this is no surprise as humans are neurologically ‘hard-wired’ to respond to such noise. What makes this annoying is when the noises are beyond our control – they are basically unwelcome intruders into our personal space.”

While the research found that the ability to enjoy a ‘quiet’ car journey is important to the majority of motorists, eight out of 10 participants also believed that a reduction in car engine noise would allow them to hold better conversations with passengers and increase their enjoyment of music. Professor Williams added,

“Music has been shown to be a great mediator of moods. It has a clear effect on the brain, and is often prescribed in therapeutic contexts.”

To listen to and download an audio feature on the impact of interior car noise, including sound samples and the expert opinion of Quentin Willson and Dr. Duncan Williams, please visit:

Earlier in 2015 Go Ultra Low identified that around 11.5 million motorists travel no further than 80 miles in a single journey in a typical year, making them perfectly placed to benefit from the lowest cost, tax-free motoring by switching to the current range of pure electric vehicles, which tend to provide an average range of around 100 miles per charge. At present, this equates to savings per driver of around £860/year in fuel and tax.

Source; Go Ultra Low