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Hi.

Is there a way to turn this (from my perspective horribly feature) off?
Can turn it off but it keeps turning on each time the car is started...

I don’t mind disconnecting some cables and/or making some small hacks. Soldering is fun!

Thanks,
Johan from Sweden
 

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Hi.

Is there a way to turn this (from my perspective horribly feature) off?
Can turn it off but it keeps turning on each time the car is started...

I don’t mind disconnecting some cables and/or making some small hacks. Soldering is fun!

Thanks,
Johan from Sweden
I know the people just hard wired the button in the ionic to always be pressed with either a piece of paper or just shorting the contact on the back.
does this work on the kona?
 

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Hi.

Is there a way to turn this (from my perspective horribly feature) off?
Can turn it off but it keeps turning on each time the car is started...

I don’t mind disconnecting some cables and/or making some small hacks. Soldering is fun!

Thanks,
Johan from Sweden
Hello Johan. Not sure you can turn it off permanently without editing the software. Too well integrated into other sound operations. I felt the same way here in San Diego when I bought my 2011 Nissan Leaf and it had a switch to turn it off. Bugged the heck outta me. I was thinking of jamming a coat hanger into the dang speaker or sound emitter but gave up that thought. Since that year there is no capability to turn that off in the U.S. for the Leaf. Yesterday I was I was walking thru a nearly empty parking lot and a prius passed me by as I was about to move left to cross the lot. Didn't hear it. No sound. Wasn't going that fast but fast enough to remind me that these silent cars are not all that safe for pedestrians who don't hear them. I'm ok with having a sound to prevent a problem (and the Kona EV is weird enough of a sound that I see it working in pedestrian glances) but the Kona EV sound is downright awful... at least it goes away above about 24km/h (15mph). The leaf sound was much better.
 

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On the US model, you can just unplug the connector from the unit. It's right under the hood latch. The car doesn't care.
 

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Sounds like they got the sound from an episode of the Jetsons... I saw an article that showed the switch being wedged
With a piece of paper. If it’s got a speaker, pull a wire or add a switch.
 

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This is where the VESS is located, you can unplug the cables at it and tape it to the frame or something.


(not my car, was posted in a FB group I'm in).
The guy of this car had a charger which he could not take out of his car, they had to take off the entire front of the car to unplug it (lol, fail).
 

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That's interesting. I think the one in the US model is mounted higher. I was easily able to reach in from under the hood and unplug it. It looks like it would be difficult to do that with the one in the photo.

In the US, we don't have the button to turn it off temporarily, but the wire is there. They just didn't include the switch because of US regulations.
 

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Hi.

Is there a way to turn this (from my perspective horribly feature) off?
Can turn it off but it keeps turning on each time the car is started...

I don’t mind disconnecting some cables and/or making some small hacks. Soldering is fun!

Thanks,
Johan from Sweden
what is VESS?
 

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MY20 Hyundai Kona Highlander
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VESS (Virtual Engine Sound System)
A compliance device invented to protect those who don't look, or cannot look (eg blind)


The Hyundai one sounds like a spaceship
More commonly to protect pedestrians reading their Facebook postings on their smart phones. But on second thought, they’re covered by your comment on those who “cannot look (eg blind)”
 

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I think the best you could do is to muffle it a bit, maybe by wrapping it with sound insulation of some type?
 

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This is a great safety feature, I will never touch it. Might want to consider what the consequences might be if you are approaching someone from behind in a parking lot and suddenly they change direction in front of you because they do not have eyes in the back of their heads. You would probably be found liable if you had disconnected such a safety feature. It is not very noticeable and goes away above 20 mph. Small price to pay to avoid putting someone in the hospital.
 

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This is a great safety feature, I will never touch it. Might want to consider what the consequences might be if you are approaching someone from behind in a parking lot and suddenly they change direction in front of you....
Agree wholeheartedly with you engnrng. As my parking lot story above indicates, it has happend to me. Lucky me, out of a childhood habit, I chose to look over my sholder first (I grew up in Cleveland Heights Ohio where we crossed any street at any point at any time so we had to look both ways before making a move). I too hate the Kona EV VESS sound but I ain't touching it either. Now if they could only change that obnoxious screech when I get out of the car while it is on and the key is in my pocket.... that would be great. A triple beep like the one used by the Leaf would be respectable.
 

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New to this forum as we picked up our Kona EV SEL yesterday!! Returned my Chevy Bolt EV 2017. That was a terrific car. This car is even better. We bought this one rather than lease it.

I am happy to report that in the USA MY2020 the noisemaker is under the hood latch forward as described in this thread. Thanks to this thread I was able to unplug it there. The plug is a 7 pin, and the plug has a positive click latch you have to push to remove it. It is on the back facing the motor when you push it for those of you trying to figure out how to remove it. You have to thread your hand in there, but you definitely can reach it. I am now driving in silence. I drove my Bolt EV, and Leaf EV for 7 years with silence. I understand the concern here, but the high pitch of the VESS is unpleasant, and in my area most folks are older and have high frequency hearing loss. Nobody can hear it. I for one am happy with this simple fix.
 

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dndrich, Welcome to the small but slowly growing number of people who have the pleasure of driving the Kona Electric. You should be aware that in most jurisdictions, if you disconnect a safety feature and publish that fact online (like you just did), then become involved with an injury or death that might have been prevented by having that alert sound, that you can be held directly liable and your liability insurance will not cover you. I am sure with your 7 years of experience with silent driving, your chances of losing everything you own are very, very small. I recommend you consider possibly honking your horn or yelling out the window (maybe something like "Illegally Modified EV approaching!") any time you are driving near pedestrians or bicycles at speeds under 20 mph. Also, have any passengers in your car help you keep an eye out for people nearby who might suddently change direction, unaware that you are nearby. Be vigilant. Be careful. Enjoy your silent Kona Electric! It is a great car, even with the VESS active a few percent of the time. For me, I am proud to announce to others, "Hey, look at me! I am driving with Zero Emissions! Hear the whine of my electric motor! This is how I roll!"
 

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This has been the same concern voiced over the years about the silence of these cars. I am not aware of accident data for EV's without noisemakers. I know the Prius in the USA does not have one. It seems like these decisions should be data driven. It is still not required in the USA. With regards to liability and safety features, we have lots of safety features that can be turned off, such as lane assist and blind spot warning. Ultimately each person must make their own decisions. Yes, I have modified the car. In some countries you get an actual switch that lets you turn off the noisemaker. I have driven by both with and without noisemakers, and have not had a pedestrian turn their head once. That is anecdotal. I know that with my bicycle I use a rather loud bell. But because it is in the higher frequency range nobody ever hears it. I have to call out with my booming voice, which is what I do.

I am quite aware that the car is really quiet, and so when approaching pedestrians I always pass really slowly with a wide berth until I am visually acknowledged. But I drive at low speeds most of the time in my driving, so the noisemaker is really not very nice. I am glad there is an easy way to defeat it.
 

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Yeah, agree VESS is a pain in stop-start traffic. Before the Kona EV I drove a Mitsubishi PHEV that allowed me to turn off VESS. The big advantage of having a switch was I could turn it off in heavy traffic, but turn it back on in parking lots. But I won’t disable the VESS in the Kona. I’d prefer a VESS switch like the Mitsubishi, but if I have to make a choice between on all the time or off, I’d choose on - there will always be times when my (or others) driving is less than perfect.

That said, I think there is a great opportunity here for someone to produce a choice of sounds that can be selected from a menu for the VESS. Like phone ring tones. No matter how inoffensive the VESS when you first get the vehicle, after some time it does get irritating.

And I need to point out that as a mature age walker, I can hear bicycle bells very easily and get incredibly annoyed with cyclists who don’t use them. Shouts from riders are frequently submerged into background traffic noise ?
 

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Yeah, agree VESS is a pain in stop-start traffic. Before the Kona EV I drove a Mitsubishi PHEV that allowed me to turn off VESS. The big advantage of having a switch was I could turn it off in heavy traffic, but turn it back on in parking lots. But I won’t disable the VESS in the Kona. I’d prefer a VESS switch like the Mitsubishi, but if I have to make a choice between on all the time or off, I’d choose on - there will always be times when my (or others) driving is less than perfect.

That said, I think there is a great opportunity here for someone to produce a choice of sounds that can be selected from a menu for the VESS. Like phone ring tones. No matter how inoffensive the VESS when you first get the vehicle, after some time it does get irritating.

And I need to point out that as a mature age walker, I can hear bicycle bells very easily and get incredibly annoyed with cyclists who don’t use them. Shouts from riders are frequently submerged into background traffic noise ?
Interesting. I am an avid cyclist in my county, and we have lots of elderly folks on the multi-use trails when I am riding on them. I am usually on the road. I have a really good and loud bell. Honestly nobody every seems to hear it. So I always yell out "coming through on a bike on your left" well behind them to give them a chance to react. Folks do appreciate it.
 

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VESS meets a mandatory safety requirement for EVs in Canada. It's there for a reason, as others have explained above. And, as others have explained, disconnecting it would give your insurance company a very good reason not to pay out in a related accident where the car was impounded and inspected.
 
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