It is today, April 12, that Bosch’s automotive electric horn celebrates 100 years of existence.
Bosch submitted its patent application for the first electric horn 100 years ago in Germany and has been offering variations of the original basic design ever since the company produced its first horn seven years later.
Robert Bosch GmbH submitted its patent application for the electric horn on April 12, 1914. During development, the company wanted the product to have a long range and a pleasant sound. The horn needed to reliably emit a sound as soon as it was activated, and low power consumption and an attractive design were also important prerequisites.
The Bosch horn, which came onto the market in 1921, met all of these objectives. The horn was based on the principle of ‘stopped pipes’ used in organ pipe building. These pipes are closed at the upper end, so they emit a lower sound than open pipes. In the Bosch horn, this principle resulted in what the company describes as a pleasant and very characteristic tone.
The original design principle has remained unchanged in each of the successors to the Bosch horn that was patented 100 years ago. The sound is generated by an electrically activated membrane and is emitted in all directions.
The product range has been extended to include fanfares. To differentiate both types, it is important to understand horns produce sound in all directions, while fanfares bundle sound together.
The funnel in a sounder is calibrated to a precise pitch and also uses a membrane to produce a pleasant and soft sound that, unlike the sound produced by horns, is emitted in one direction.
Bosch now offers a wide range of horns and fanfares for motorcycles, cars and commercial vehicles; the horn inventing company said these products are characterized by their functional reliability, long service life and attractive design.
Bosch said horns are available in a wide variety of models and variations for original equipment, individual design and special requirements for commercial vehicles, cars, SUVs and pick-ups.
Suitable products are also available for classic car enthusiasts. Bosch Automotive Tradition, the classic division of Bosch, gave the famous Bosch horn a new and historic redesign in 2006, including slotted screws and chrome-plated horn covers. The original was used in many vehicle brands and models from the 1950s and 1960s.