Forthcoming Regulations Delay Hyundai Sonata Hybrid
Sales of Hyundai’s Sonata Hybrid may have begun already, but deliveries are delayed as new regulations were ordered just as Hyundai’s first hybrid was going to market. In January, President Obama followed up on a months-long effort by the National Federation of the Blind to require full-time audible warnings for electric-drive vehicles, and signed legislation directing the DOT to
study and report to Congress on the minimum level of sound that is necessary to be emitted from a motor vehicle, or some other method, to alert blind and other pedestrians of the presence of operating motor vehicles while traveling.
According to GreenCarReports.com, the possibility of these changes required a last-minute modifications to the Sonata Hybrid, in order to remove the option of disabling the Hybrid’s “virtual engine noise” in case that feature fell foul of the new regulations. The Sonata Hybrid had been developed to have the sound-disabling function, so the last-minute modification
required changes to the wiring harness, the user-interface software, and even the Owner’s Manual, which had already been finalized.