HUMMER EV Tries to Sound Like V8 With WTF Mode
WTF is right. There are many issues conventional car owners report when it comes to electric cars, and one of the most glaring is the sound, or rather lack thereof. Picture this – your first car with an exhaust system. Maybe it was a little Honda Civic that your neighbors hated, or maybe you were lucky to have a big block V8 with GlassPacks. Either way, waking up and leaving was something you looked forward to every day.
Modern exhaust systems do their best to implement technology that reduces drone. Car guys know that nothing beats turning 2,000 rpm on the highway at 65 mph, and all you can hear is the exhaust note. Even if your exhaust is stock, sometimes we turn off the radio and listen to it hum. EVs, in their current form, don’t have an answer for that. However, GMC came up with a solution to that problem in their HUMMER EV – or did they?
There’s no secret that global automakers are trending toward electric. With General Motors’ recent tease of a Chevy electric pick up truck, one thing we can’t get over is how quiet these cars are on the road. During GM’s CES presentation, they revealed that they’re working with Bose to create a soundtrack for the upcoming HUMMER EV. They plan to offer a Watts to Freedom, or WTF mode (yes, that’s what it’s called) that unlocks its 1,000 horsepower to accelerate from 0-60 in three seconds.
Aaron Pfau, the lead development engineer of the HUMMER EV, describes the Bose Electric Vehicle Enhancement technology as mixing guitar riffs and high-frequency feedback. The sounds are inspired by the Formula E electric racing series to give an “immersive sensory experience” when you mash on the accelerator pedal, formerly known as the gas pedal.
Pfau mentioned that GMC isn’t ready to share the audio clips yet, leading our imaginations to stray. Will it be a scene out of a power metal music video of guitar riffs that match up when you reach 60 mph at full-throttle? Admittedly, that sounds magical.
From our understanding, you have to push the traction control button twice to engage Freedom mode. The vehicle will lower its air suspension system and optimize the battery temperature for full delivery. It’ll ask you to apply the brake, and your seat and subwoofer will vibrate as the system completes its preparations. The driver then will floor the accelerator and release the brake pedal. It seems like a lot of work to imitate something that already exists.
GMC isn’t the first automaker to develop something like this – the Ford Mustang Mach-E has a mode that cranks up a digital version of their V8 engine. Insert irony here.
The top of line HUMMER EV will be available in dealerships this fall with a starting price of $112,595, but GM will add less expensive models to their lineup over the next few years. With all of these additions to mimic a combustion engine, is it enough for you to consider purchasing?
Technology has come a long way. Despite how we feel, implementing these technological advances on such a broad scale is an accomplishment for automakers, but is it enough to compete with the tried and true?