In this paper, we argue that emotional reactions may guide the design of in–vehicle auditory displays since emotion has strong consequences for behaviour and information processing. A simulator study with 30 participants was conducted in which auditory icons were contrasted to abstract earcon sounds in more or less imminent collision scenarios and 3D sounds were tested against monophonic sounds in lane change scenarios. Self–report and physiological measures of emotional response as well as behavioural measures (e.g., brake response time) were used. It was found that auditory icons gave up to 600 ms faster brake response times than abstract sounds in imminent collision scenarios and that 3D sound gave a stronger emotional response in lane change scenarios. Moreover, the results indicate that emotion can predict behaviour, e.g., sounds rated as being more activating and negative also gave quicker response times.
Keywords: auditory icons, earcons, spatial sound, driver–vehicle interfaces, auditory interfaces, sound design, emotion, emotional reaction, affective reaction, advanced driver assistance systems, ADAS, 3D sound, commercial vehicles, behavioural response, in–vehicle auditory displays, imminent collisions, lane changing, brake response times, vehicle safety