A new Hyundai vehicle employs noise-cancelling technology to eliminate road noise. The technology has been developed by in-car tech specialist Harman International. 

It's the world’s first active road noise cancellation system in a production vehicle and the Road-Noise Active Noise Control (RANC) system works to eliminate road and tyre noise in much the same way as a pair of noise-cancelling headphones does. 

Available on the Genesis GV80 SUV, the system uses Harman's HaloSonic tech to cancel out the noise. Harman says that road and tyre noise is still a problem today because of the demands of customers; we want sharper vehicle handling and more fuel efficiency but that comes at a cost. 

Adding passive soundproofing adds to weight and bulk plus - of course - resulting in increased fuel consumption, so using the car's audio system is an obvious solution as it's something you have installed anyway.  

The RANC processor uses signals received from sensors along the suspension and chassis to predict the amount of noise that's probably being transferred into the cabin. Anti-noise is then generated in real-time and measured in each seat location. Everything happens in milliseconds, so the noise doesn't reach the occupants’ ears. Clever stuff. 

Here's a graphical representation of the noise cancelling in action. 

Harman

Harman is owned by Samsung and incorporates various brands including AKG and Harman Kardon. Expect a lot more vehicles to appear using the same technologies, in other words - and certainly from Hyundai and sister brand Kia.