Listen to the ID.3’s Official Driving Sound

Electric cars can operate nearly silently, so they need a low-speed sound to make sure that they don’t sneak up on pedestrians like a Mustang leaving a Cars and Coffee. Volkswagen is finally showing off what its ID range of cars will sound like.

And… well. It certainly is a sound. It’s pretty much like you’d expect. Futuristic but recognizably vehicular. A polyphonic whistle that rises in pitch as you speed up.

According to VW, the “multi-layered audio tracks express the speed and dynamism of e-mobility.”

The sound was designed by composer Leslie Mandoki who fled Hungary to escape communism before becoming part of Dschinghis Khan, which competed in the 1979 Eurovision song contest. He has since been producing music for ManDoki Soulmates and counts Jethro Tull’s Ian Anderson, Toto’s Bobby Kimball, and Cream’s Jack Bruce among his collaborators.

Volkswagen worked so hard on the sound because it thinks that it won’t just be a safety feature, it will also be a sound signature for the vehicle. And it’s a tack that other brands are taking, too. Listen to the sounds that Nissan (annoyingly tinny), Chevrolet (meh), and Citroen (Frenchly weird) came up with for their cars.