Nissan turns Leaf EV into ‘zero-emission lullaby’ machine

Soundscape is designed to put infants to sleep without burning gas

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Nissan Leaf frequency visualization | Nissan photos

You may have been among those parents who used to put the baby into the car seat and go for a drive so the infant would actually go to sleep in the evening. 

Nissan claims that 60 percent of parents rely on such “dream driving” to help their babies go to sleep and therefore the automaker’s European division has produced “the world’s first zero-emission lullaby, a soundtrack that fuses sounds of the Nissan Leaf with frequencies produced by a humming combustion engine to create a hypnotic soundscape for angry babies.”

The world’s first such lullaby provides “a hypotonic soundscape that soothes inconsolable children to sleep,” Nissan said in its announcement.

Nissan LEAF Dream Drive rocks your baby to sleep

“Nissan comes to the rescue of frazzled parents across Europe with a guilt-free solution for those who heavily rely on the magical effects of dream driving to gently lull their children to sleep,” the company said in its news release.”

It said the soundtrack was created by Nissan engineers working in collaboration with sound designer and sleep coach Tom Middleton. 

Nissan says research shows that 65 percent of European parents with children ages 2 or younger survive on less than 5 hours of sleep per night, with 57 percent admitting they use their car as a sleep aid at least once a week.

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While parents say it is the vehicle motion that causes slumber, Nissan says research shows it actually is the sound frequencies. 

“An EV like the Nissan Leaf is a better choice for dream driving,” said Paul Speed-Andrews, a Nissan noise and vibration development manager, “although we are aware that the quiet soundscape might not be as effective as ICE (internal combustion engine) cars. Combustion engines transmit a sound frequency, a combination of white, pink and brown noise varied in tone – creating an orchestral soundscape that is especially soothing and comforting to children.”

Nissan adds that driving in an EV reduces CO2 emissions. It likens the use of the new soundtrack in an EV to “the kryptonite album for angry babies” and to a “zero-emission lullaby.”

The soundtrack can be played through a variety of devices and audio providers through the Nissan Dream Drive website.

A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

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