Toyota’s 2010 Prius is getting a new speaker system upgrade – under the hood, to ensure that the car makes enough noise to alert pedestrians to its presence.
Apparently, the cars are now too quiet, and there is a general concern that this might pose a danger to those on foot.
There’s no word yet on whether an optional smoke stack can be added to the engine to combat the fact that the Prius doesn’t spit out enough pollution.
The speaker system is an optional upgrade currently available in Japan only. Toyota is undecided whether to begin offering the option in North America, worried perhaps that North Americans are already noisy and obnoxious enough.
The system emits a whirring noise designed to be equivalent to that of a combustion engine, and will cost around 12,600 yen, approximately $148.
A louder version is provided at no charge on Toyota models with faulty brake systems.