Report: EU Proposal Would Limit All Cars to 70 MPH for "Safety" Reasons
September 3, 2013 7:06 PM
(Source: Wallpaper Den)
Bye bye autobahn
Europe has been known as the birthplace of some of the world's fastest cars with luxury-minded speed-demons from Italian brands like Volkswagen AG's (
) Automobili Lamborghini S.p.A., German brands like Daimler AG's (
) Mercedes-Benz, or the UK's Bentley Motor Group Ltd. (also a Volkswagen property). Indeed, perhaps no highway system is as famous as Germany's autobahns, where there is no
enforced speed limit
But all of that could soon be changing.
The European Union's
Mobility and Transport Departmen
t -- a branch of the EU's market regulatory body, the European Commission (EC) -- is preparing an extreme proposal to counter auto fatalities in the region. UK newspaper
the office of Patrick McLoughlin, the UK's Transport Secretary as warning of the controversial proposal.
The EU is looking to pull the plug on drivers travelling over 70 mph. [Image Source: Porsche]
Reportedly the EC approached Mr. McLoughlin with a pending proposal that sought to use an Intelligent Speed Adaptation (ISA) scheme to prevent any new vehicles sold in the EU
from going over 70 miles per hour
. The EC officials argued that the proposal was necessary to curb the over 30,000 drivers who die each year on Europe's streets.
But Mr. McLoughlin blasted the proposal; with a "government source" close his office commenting:
This has Big Brother written all over it and is exactly the sort of thing that gets people's backs up about Brussels. The Commission wanted [Mr. McLoughin's] views ahead of plans to publish the proposals this autumn. He made it very clear what those views were.
An EC spokesperson confirmed that talks about new speed regulation are pending, remarking:
There is a currently consultation focusing on speed-limiting technology already fitted to HGVs and buses. Taking account of the results, the Commission will publish in the autumn a document by its technical experts which will no doubt refer to ISA among many other things
the more basic free market and cost issues
, another problem with the proposal arguably is the fact the EU member states vary greatly in traffic fatalities. Out of Britain's thirty eight million motorists, there are only 1,754 fatalities in 2012 -- a 0.0046 percent death rate. By contrast Germany's forty-five million motorists in 2012 got in 3,657 fatalities -- a 0.0081 percent death rate (almost twice as high).
This controversy may be laid to rest -- or further ignited -- when
self-driving (autonomous or semi-autonomous) cars
hit the market.
, Inc. (
and Nissan Motor Comp.
, Ltd. (
) are among the companies working to bring self-driving car technology to the market.
“So far we have not seen a single Android device that does not infringe on our patents." -- Microsoft General Counsel Brad Smith
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