There was I, minding my own business in one of Knutsford’s main shopping streets. Then a great roar shattered my peace. I almost literally jumped out of my skin, heart racing, adrenaline pumping… What on earth?
Then I realised that I had failed to notice the shiny red Ferrari Testerossa on the street just by me, so had no warning when a great roar came from the engine, almost as loud as a bomb blast. Of course, the driver was an arrogant looking young male. Who else?
What is it with these immature adults who can only express themselves through annoying others?
The Ferrari incident occurred some time ago. As it happens, we recently visited the local MacLaren showroom, in the interests of educating a visiting French boy, where similar cars were on display. It seems the manufacturers deliberately make the engines really noisy, as that is what the customers want. To me, it seems that the manufacturers are being entirely irresponsible, but then, at that end of the market, money talks.
In theory, there are legal limits on permissible levels of noise. According to UK government website dft, “The external noise emitted by passenger cars has been controlled since 1929 when the Motor Cars (Excessive Noise) regulations were introduced. New cars are now required to meet Europe-wide noise limits. These have been progressively reduced from 82 decibels (dB (A)) in 1978 to the current limit of 74 dB (A) established in 1996.” (74dB is something like the level of music played in a typical living room, upper 70s are annoyingly loud to some people.)
The Ferrari of my example well exceeded these permissible levels. But are they actually policed? It seems not. A current private members bill aims to be “A Bill to make provision for the enforcement of noise limits for vehicles via automatic monitoring equipment; and for connected purposes.” Let’s hope the bill gets somewhere.
But just pause for thought. Would the vehicles actually sell for £200-300,000 and upward if they were whisper quiet, and could not be used to demonstrate to the rest of the population just how rich, insensitive and annoying their owners are?!
Featured image is of a particularly ‘desirable’ limited edition MacLaren tagged at £1.5million.