Protecting all Canadians is a priority for the Government of Canada, and quiet motors can sometimes pose a safety risk when it comes to hybrid and electric vehicles.
The Minister of Transport, the Honourable Omar Alghabra, announced that the Government of Canada is amending the Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations to mandate minimum levels of noise from hybrid and electric vehicles.
Hybrid and electric vehicles have quiet motors and produce almost no sound at low speeds, which can make their presence on our roads hard to detect. Quiet vehicles pose an increased risk of collision to road users such as cyclists, pedestrians, and Canadians with disabilities.
Under the new requirements, all hybrid and electric vehicles will now be required to have sound emitters that would produce noise at low speeds. Automakers can determine the type of sound the vehicle makes, but the volume and pitch must allow a road user to hear if a vehicle is speeding up or slowing down.
While many automakers have voluntarily added sound emitters to hybrid and electric vehicles, Transport Canada’s new requirement makes it mandatory equipment on all new light-duty passenger vehicles sold in Canada.
The new requirement came into effect on December 21, 2022.