Ford has developed a sound cancelling system for cars to give drivers quieter journeys.
The system, called Active Noise Control, uses three microphones that are placed in the cabin to detect noises produced by the vehicle, such as from the engine and transmission systems.
Opposing sound waves are then broadcast from the audio system to counteract these in a similar fashion to noise-cancelling headphones.
Ford says the new technology does not impact the volume levels of music and conversation. The intelligent system will also record driver and vehicle behaviour to provide the best results, for example when a driver is accelerating in a lower gear.
“Whether listening to a favourite playlist, tuning into a much-loved station, or simply enjoying a respite from the demands of modern life, the experience of sound – and just as importantly silence – can be a fundamental part of an enjoyable car journey,” said Ford’s Dr Ralf Heinrichs.
The new system will be integrated into the upscale Ford Mondeo Vignale and the car will also feature other technologies designed to enhance the sound quality.
“The all new Mondeo Vignale with Active Noise Control offers drivers enhanced levels of comfort and fewer distractions,” Heinrichs added.
Acoustic glass will be installed that will improve the sound-proofing qualities of the windscreen and front windows.
The glass is thinner than a human hair and reduces the intrusion of wind noise caused by air flow around the window pillars.
The company also has been working closely with sound engineers from Sony to perfect the Vignales audio system. Ford said it would deliver ‘an exceptional acoustical experience on the road with a customised stereo mode and a true surround experience’.
Dr John Cartwright, a chief medical officer with Ford’s British arm, said: “Noise is intrusive and reduces the driver’s mental processing power, and can lead to distraction and stress.”
“By removing unwanted powertrain noise, Ford is helping customers to complete their journey calmly and in comfort.”