Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Prius Stops Creeping Up on You

Toyota announced today that it will begin offering an engine-like sound system in newest Prius hybrids to help assuage concerns that the quiet vehicles pose greater risks to pedestrians than their noisier counterparts (a recent study showed hybrids were twice as likely as non-hybrids to be involved in pedestrian crashes at low speeds). The system is voluntary and (as of now) only offered in Japan, but Toyota is considering expanding the option to other countries/vehicle models.

Nice to know that pedestrians might soon face one less danger on the roads.


  1. I have mixed feeling about this. Obviously giving pedestrians the tools to take their safety into their own hands somewhat, and protect themselves from drivers when they can hear them coming is a good thing. But part of me really hates the idea that it's on us to protect ourselves from incompetent drivers. And our cities are full of enough annoying noices without fake vroom-vrooms from impatient prius drivers.

  2. I guess it could be worse, like those cars with the really obnoxious horns that play music when you hit them. But it would be nice if drivers just respected peds a little more...

  3. ... I mean, that's why they make windshields clear, right?