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SPEED LIMIT ON MOTORWAYS
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Serious question: as driving enthusiasts, what do you guys think about the speed limits on your national motorways? As a German driver, I'm always slightly confused coming to your country. Most UK motorways I've driven on compare pretty well to our German ones, yet you have a blanket speed limit where we have varying speed limits and, of course, stretches with no limits at all. I'm sure limiting speeds on busy stretches such as the ring around London makes sense, but what about quieter parts such as the M5 heading down to Exeter? It may well be that I simply travel these routes outside of peak traffic, but my impression is that, on some stretches at least, I see no actual reason for speed limiting. What do you think? Do you believe that having such limits in place at all times keeps your roads safer?

UK drivers could not, in general, handle a much higher speed limit. 80 maybe but that's about it IMO

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NotHenningWehn said...

Serious question: as driving enthusiasts, what do you guys think about the speed limits on your national motorways? As a German driver, I'm always slightly confused coming to your country. Most UK motorways I've driven on compare pretty well to our German ones, yet you have a blanket speed limit where we have varying speed limits and, of course, stretches with no limits at all. I'm sure limiting speeds on busy stretches such as the ring around London makes sense, but what about quieter parts such as the M5 heading down to Exeter? It may well be that I simply travel these routes outside of peak traffic, but my impression is that, on some stretches at least, I see no actual reason for speed limiting. What do you think? Do you believe that having such limits in place at all times keeps your roads safer?

Not at all. The speed limit should always be what is a safe speed for the conditions you're driving in; hence why you see people driving at 80+mph on a dry, well sighted, clear motorway. Speed isn't dangerous, driving too fast for the conditions is.

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Too many people in the UK have p!$$ poor lane discipline, many sit in the middle lane, because they do not think they are allowed to use the 'truck lane' :roll: Or they do what the guy in the Merc C-Class did to me when I was passing him in the middle lane - just pull out in front, with out indicating or looking. Good job there were no cars in the outside lane and I was able to react in time.

maximum limit anywhere in Oz is 110km/h. (68mph?)

it's depressing. driving from Brisbane to the Gold Coast you have motorway that is for the most part in tip-top condition, 8 lanes wide & fairly empty.

you could in most circumstances do a *safe* 160-220kph depending what car you're in. In something with a bit of zing, 230 would be reasonable.

the problem is the 'tards that won't slow down when conditions dictate :(

In my state all roads unless otherwise signed are limited to 31mph, and most main/arterial roads are between 37-49mph.

Dinny_G said...

UK drivers could not, in general, handle a much higher speed limit. 80 maybe but that's about it IMO

+1

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BMW Car Magazine @QuentlyBentin

In my state all roads unless otherwise signed are limited to 31mph, and most main/arterial roads are between 37-49mph.


Really, phut?? Oh my goodness, how I don't envy you. 31mph??

Dinny_G said...

UK drivers could not, in general, handle a much higher speed limit. 80 maybe but that's about it IMO

Really, do you think? Wouldn't travel speed mostly be a matter of habit? I would have assumed people might adjust over time if given the opportunity. It's not as if the cars you drive are much different from ours... except you guys seem to (rightly) treasure icons like Peugeot 205 GTIs and the like more than we do, and keep those on the road. I wish Germany had more of an older car culture like you do - travelling UK roads always makes for excellent classic-spotting!

Remind me, which bit of the M5 is ever lightly trafficked?

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NotHenningWehn said...

Do you believe that having such limits in place at all times keeps your roads safer?

Yes. Because you couldn't remove the current limit and not expect every single petrol head or chav to go out to max their metal and inevitably cause the single highest amount of accidents in history in a single night.

And yes because in no way are the british public ready or equipped to deal with motorway trafic speeds ranging from 60mph to 180mph.

Updated November 27, 2012 at 7:04 PM

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Markcoopers said...

Remind me, which bit of the M5 is ever lightly trafficked?

See - that's what I mean about travelling at off-peak times... I suppose I tend to travel early afternoon (pre going-home rush) or late-ish evening southbound and early in the morning northbound. Admittedly, I may also have considered parts of the A30 as being motorway rather than A-road, which slightly elongates the stretch of road I had in mind.

There's a big difference in Autobahn driving style throughout Germany I find. I live near the Danish border, where the Autobahn is relatively free and drivers tend to drive at a speed appropriate to the conditions, or fuel efficiency (this does not apply to drivers of black Audi estates). The number of "durchgeknallte Vollidioten" increases as you move south, until you reach Munich, where everyone seems to think he's Vettel on amphetamines. UK drivers tend to have no lane discipline, sticking to the outside lane for fear of losing their place. Germans have discipline, but enjoy intimidating drivers of slower cars by screaming up to their rear bumpers and slamming on their brakes at the last minute even though they have seen them a kilometre ahead.
Main difference, however, is the attitude of the traffic cop who stops you-in England, he's much more likely to have a sense of humour...

I stopped caring about this long ago and make my own speed limit on the motorway ;)
It helps that for the past 2 years 90% of my motorway driving has been past 11pm so hardly no traffic, no lasers, can spot plod easier as their reflective cars light up etc...

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Mito Man said...

I stopped caring about this long ago and make my own speed limit on the motorway ;)
It helps that for the past 2 years 90% of my motorway driving has been past 11pm so hardly no traffic, no lasers, can spot plod easier as their reflective cars light up etc...

You've been lucky. When they are behind bridges or on slip roads you won't see them until you've passed. Not to mention all the unmarked traffic. You must have see people pulled over by unmarked cars with flashing lights inside the car?

limit should be 120, gives you 30 second miles, makes working out arrival time nice and easy :)

Updated November 28, 2012 at 5:39 AM

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Pilouil
Citroen C3 1.4 HDI 69.0424 bhp

It should be raised to 90mph.

mik said...

It should be raised to 90mph.

It is already effectively 85mph.

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There are sections of the M40 (past Oxford particularly but quite a lot in fact), M4, M5, M6, M50 etc where average speeds must approach 100mph even in busier times. I've always assumed it to be the layout of the road combined with plenty of traffic exiting in one place freeing up flow which does it, but it's such a relief. Not sure formalising a higher limit would be a good thing though, because the character of the road in those areas might change if people thought 100 was the target and they didn't have to worry about being stopped.

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JL said...

Oh b*llocks you're right

mattcambs said...

It is already effectively 85mph.

Has anyone told the scamera vans?

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