There's thinking outside of the box, and then there's letting Linkin Park help decide what your next generation of electric cars will sound like, and that's precisely what Mercedes-AMG is doing.
As electric cars become more familiar and the lack of the sound of an internal combustion engine loses its novelty, automakers are going to need their vehicles to sound like something, and that something should be entirely new and different. Whether they sound like rock concerts or the Jetsons car or rap air horns remains to be seen as AMG hasn't yet settled one sound in particular.
"You know Linkin Park? I started to talk with these guys about what is their interpretation of electrified sound," said Tobias Moers, CEO of Mercedes-AMG in an interview with Australian magazine Wheels.
Manufacturers of vehicles, particularly those of performance vehicles like Mercedes-AMG, have a clear understanding of the necessity of sound in sparking desire from potential customers and in forming bonds between a current customer and their car. The bass-heavy snarl of an AMG V8 is as much a part of that brand's identity as swear words are to Deadwood, and recalibrating enthusiast's expectations will no doubt prove a lengthy and challenging process.
"We sell emotions and sound is really a crucial part of emotion so what we do is work on artificial sounds because you have to," Moers went on to say.
We're excited to hear what the soundtrack of tomorrow's performance vehicles could be as they veer away from Tom Waits-on-a-diet-pill-binge toward the Linkin Park end of the spectrum. It's a brave new world out there, but if the sound is even close to being as impressive as EV performance has gotten, we're all in for a treat.