Sound plays a huge role in developing a new car or truck, and to enjoying it once it’s out on the road. Not just the sound the engine makes, but how quiet it is inside – and in the case of the forthcoming new Lincoln Aviator, to what chimes it uses to alert its driver.
To get the sound just right, Ford’s luxury division solicited the services of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. The classical musicians recorded hundreds of musical combinations of percussion, violin, and viola, and Lincoln narrowed them down to six that will permeate the cabin of the new crossover.
“Aviator represents the true vision of the Lincoln brand,” said Lincoln design director David Woodhouse. “With a look this striking, we needed to have sounds that matched the beauty of this vehicle.”
Since the vehicle hasn’t been revealed yet – only shown in concept form thus far – they used a Continental sedan to try out the new sounds. Now that the project is complete, the innovative chimes will be used for 25 of the vehicle’s features, alerting the driver of everything from an open fuel door to an unlatched seatbelt. And they’ll be head at three levels of urgency, from non-critical to high-alert.
“This is quite a departure for us – introducing music into the informational chime world,” added Lincoln’s vehicle harmony engineer Jennifer Prescott. “But we’re always thinking about luxury, and this was a way to take Lincoln to an even higher level.”
Lincoln is preparing to unveil the new three-row Aviator crossover at the LA Auto Show at the end of this month – complete with the new chimes. After that, they’ll be used on other models until they’ve extended to the entire Lincoln lineup.