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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
High pitch sound coming from hydrid drive system

Hi everyone,

I have the CT for more than 2 months now with 1400 miles. I loved the handling and solid drive. Overall I'm really happy with the CT and haven't notice anything unusual up until last Sunday. Because the weather was cool I had the windows down which normally are closed with A/C running. Driving around at low speed I started to hear a high pitch sound coming from the front of the car. At first I thought it might be the brakes but the high pitch sound could be heard while driving at different speeds and not during braking.

In the 2 months I've been driving I never heard or noticed this high pitch sound and was concern that something is wrong with the engine. :confused:

So this morning I went down to the dealer to have them checked my car. The specialist explained the high pitch sound is produce by the hybrid drive system when it's turning the front wheels. At first I wasn't buying this explanation and we drove around in my CT to prove the high pitch sound is there. When we return, the dealer then arrange to have me test drive another CT with just 3 miles in the ODO. We drove around the block and with the windows down I was able to hear the same high pitch sound although slightly softer but still audible. It's so strange that I never realize that high pitch sound was there all the time. :rolleyes:

Now that I'm aware the high pitch sound is there and is normal characteristic of the hybrid drive system, it's annoying the heck out of me. Hopefully I'll get used to it and ignore the sound completely. :D

I'm curious if anyone has read about this high pitch sound anywhere in the owner's manual or was told by the salesman when you bought the CT or even heard the actual high pitch sound when test driving the CT? :confused:

Cheers,
Bill :cool:
 

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I guess I'm used to it from my previous experience with the RX400h. Don't even notice it.

If you hate that sound be glad you don't have a 12 with the "hybrid warning sound". :rolleyes:
 

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I hear the "electrical whine" when driving alongside walls with the windows down; I don't notice it otherwise. I always assumed that it was normal for a "Toyota" hybrid. I've noticed the same noise coming from Prius's when I'm walking through parking lots! ;)
 

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I must be blessed. Caused I don't not hear this noise
 

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I must be blessed. Caused I don't not hear this noise
I think something is wrong with their cars. :eek: :eek:

I have a CT and a Prius and neither has a "high pitched whine"

Are these 'whiners" the start of lemon CTs ??:confused:
 

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I think something is wrong with their cars. :eek: :eek:

I have a CT and a Prius and neither has a "high pitched whine"

Are these 'whiners" the start of lemon CTs ??:confused:
I'm not whining (or complaining, for that matter!), I'm just trying to assure the OP that this sound is normal. :) I also said that I only hear it under the most suitable conditions for hearing such a subtle sound; windows down/near a wall (so that the sound reflects back to me unhindered) or near a slow moving Toyota hybrid when on foot. Otherwise, I don't hear or notice it.

By the way, have you ever noticed the high frequency "tones" that emanate from the high voltage power supplies in CRT TV's? Many people can't hear high frequencies; some of those that can hear them, just haven't payed any attention to them. I can hear those higher frequencies and I'm aware of them. I'm constantly amazed at just how unobservant and oblivious to their surroundings most people are! The sound from the hybrid system is another one of "these" kind of sounds. ;)

I suspect that this faint sound coming from Toyota hybrid systems is also high voltage related. :rolleyes:
 

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Hi folks. I realize that I'm entering a 2 year old thread but I couldn't help myself. I bought a 2012 CT and started noticing the squeal about a week after I bought it. I complained to the service advisor about this at the 5k mile service. He told me that it was normal and nothing could be one. Unfortunately, I'm a sound engineer by profession and deal with getting rid of these types of squeals in production tracks on every movie that I work on. This squeal in the CT200h is like knives in my ear drums. I've been trying to get Lexus to either fix the problem or put me into another car that doesn't make this "nails on a chalkboard" sound. After speaking to Caroline at Lexus it was made very clear to me that they could care less. However, the local Lexus dealer would like to help me so I tried driving other Hybrid Lexus's. All of the newer Lexus Hybrids make the exact same pitched squeal. The RX seemed a little lower in volume but still very much there. After driving all of the newer Hybrid I tried a 2010 HS250. This car had no squeal what so ever. It was a relief. The Lexus service advisor had recently told me that the squeal in the Hybrids was engineered that way so yo knew the Electrical part of the system was working. Wow. I can't believe that somebody would ever say that. This squeal is almost a pure tone. It resides between 8,000 and 10,000 Hz. Most men over the age of 40 couldn't hear these frequencies. It so happens that most service advisors are men over 40. I truly believe that this constant squeal could effect my livelihood. I'm a year and a half into this lease, what should I do? What should Lexus do?
 

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I don't think I ever noticed the sound, or if I did I just figured it was part of being a hybrid. sounds like I should pay attention more... :)
 

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Are you guys talking about the sound the electric motor makes when you speed up from a stop, or slow down to a stop? This is a totally normal sound for an electric motor, all electric motors make some kind of sound like that. I wouldn't call it particularly high pitched though. If you are talking about a different sound, then I guess I've never heard it in my CT.
 

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All of the newer Lexus Hybrids make the exact same pitched squeal.
I'm 52 and hear the high pitch too.. was very annoying for me for several months, but I guess I've gotten used to it. If you drive with your windows open, it tends to be worse as it gets bounced off cars parked along the side of the road or buildings back in to the car. Roll the windows up and turn the music on. You could have learned about this before you leased since this thread is 6 months older. ;)
 

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I noticed the pitchy noise when I test drove the CT200h. The noise clearly could be heard in low speed in both acceleration and deceleration when coming to stop. I ask the dealer to drive another one...and then a third one all new cars. All three were the same. It is actually a bit loader when bringing the car to stop. I bought the car and still doing it. NORMAL to all Lexus and Toyota. I actually heard the same noise when I test drove a prius as well but seemed more muffled than CT.
 

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I just test drove a 2013 CT200h and I noticed this too. This was my first time driving an hybrid, my dog ears could here it with the windows close and the AC on. I'm going to test drive a Prius and C-Max in the next days, I'm curious to ear if this high pitch sound would be noticeable on those models. A part from that, I loved my test drive.
 

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My sister just bought a brand new Prius fully loaded. I drove the thing for an hour long drive from Kenosha to Chicago and can tell you that's it's more similar than different from the CT. It's basically the same car in a different body. It makes that exact same noises at the same frequencies.

This thread does crack me up though. I've owned my CT for the last year and a half and have heard this sound every day i've owned it. Did it bother me or make me think twice? No, not once. Why you ask? Because I know how a hybrid car works and a noise like this from the electrical system is normal. That'd be like complaining because my engine has an exhaust sound. To each there own but some people are either to ignorant to know engineering or just waaayyy to picky. That's my .02


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It doesn't bother me at all, never did; assures me it's a real hybrid car.
If it does annoy you, then replace it. Hybrid cars are not for you.
 

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it's the vehicle pedestrian warning system. it's a synthesized noise at low speeds or when you are in ev mode. you can disable it if you want, it'll just take some elbow grease. many prius owners mentioned it's located behind the front bumper on the drivers side, dont know where it is for the ct since i have a 2011. fyi, toyota and lexus implemented it on all hybrid models 2012 and above. i think eventually all hybrids/electric vehicles will have the warning system since it's the law now :-\
 

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it's the vehicle pedestrian warning system. it's a synthesized noise at low speeds or when you are in ev mode. you can disable it if you want, it'll just take some elbow grease. many prius owners mentioned it's located behind the front bumper on the drivers side, dont know where it is for the ct since i have a 2011. fyi, toyota and lexus implemented it on all hybrid models 2012 and above. i think eventually all hybrids/electric vehicles will have the warning system since it's the law now :-\
Haha nice try! That's only on 2013's and later due to government mandate. We're also referring to the noise the electric motor makes when running. We are talking about 2 entirely different things.


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Haha nice try! That's only on 2013's and later due to government mandate. We're also referring to the noise the electric motor makes when running. We are talking about 2 entirely different things.


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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electric_vehicle_warning_sounds <---first paragraph last sentence
2012 Toyota Prius, Prius V, Prius Plug-in Hybrid: Now With Spaceship Sound
2012 Lexus CT 200h gets optional F Sport package, pedestrian warning system
Beep, Beep: Pedestrian Warnings for Electric Cars Need to Be Obnoxious - CBS News
http://www.ct200hforum.com/forum/lexus-ct200h-general-discussion-forum/118756-2012-vehicle-proximity-notification-system.html
http://wot.motortrend.com/2012-lexus-ct-200h-gets-new-alert-system-and-f-sport-option-rest-of-lexus-lineup-are-carryovers-107959.html#axzz2fvt0teL3

There's even a video of the sound...


need more references?? they started preempting the government regulation by putting it on from 2012 and later vehicles...anyway i understand that it could be the high pitched noise that you hear during deceleration, but at the same time you can't rule out that warning system.
 
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