Nissan will let its future electric cars sing with 'Canto'

October 31, 2017

Some consumers may enjoy the fact electric cars operate in near silence, but Nissan wants to keep pedestrians safe by giving its future electric vehicles a sound. In fact, it's more of a song.

Nissan revealed "Canto," the official sound (song?) of future Nissan electric cars at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show alongside the IMx electric SUV concept. The brand describes the sound as "energizing" and "confident," though it sounds eerily familiar to space vessels engaging some sort of hyperspeed. The song even crescendos as the driver accelerates.

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In an effort to curb noise pollution, Nissan engineers ensured "Canto," which translates to "I sing" from Latin, is only loud enough for pedestrians to identify a vehicle is moving towards them. Nissan actually hopes onlookers appreciate the sound as its electric car buzz about city streets. Also included are tones for when the driver selects the reverse gear, for example.

Canto isn't present all the time, though. The song only kicks in after 12 mph, so there won't be any singing as Nissan cars creep around parking lots. The speed regulations will differ with various market regulations, according to the brand, however. It's not the tone we expect from a car making 430 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque, like the IMx concept, but at least the future has a pleasant ring to it.

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