Autobahn under attack as politicians push for speed limits - report

BMW M5 crash in Germany 20.4.2012
BMW M5 crash in Germany 20.4.2012

The end of the unrestricted autobahn could be near

Germany has long been known as a speed freak's haven but that could soon be changing as several political parties have announced their support for enacting a mandatory speed limit on the autobahn.

The issue isn't particularly new, as the German Green Party has been pushing for speed limits for years, but Sigmar Gabriel - the leader of the SPD party - has joined them by announcing his support of a 120 km/h (75 mph) speed limit. According to Gabriel, statistics show lower accident rates on restricted sections of the autobahn so imposing speed limits could save lives.

Despite Gabriel's suggestions, the ADAC points out that only 11 percent of Germany's serious traffic accidents and deaths occurred on the autobahn last year. The organization also claims that 60 percent of driving-related fatalities occur on country roads and not on the autobahn.

It remains unclear if the allure of the autobahn is enough to keep the politicians away, but rumors have suggested the SPD and Green Party could form a coalition if the former party wins the next election.

Source: Autocar
Published May 9th, 2013 12:40am By Michael Gauthier
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Comments (36)

I'd say a limit of 300 km/h would be reasonable. Otherwise above that speed you would have to go on a circuits.
May 10th, 2013 12:46pm
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xLumino xLumino
I think, it's a good idea. 130km/h whould be absolutely ok. And more speedcameras on highly frequentet routes like BAB8 around Stuttgart. The ecological part of this discussion might be more interesting. It's incredible much more CO2 emitted by higher speed... The higher speed is at first not really the reason of badly accidents. But there is an agressive potential in this context.
May 9th, 2013 7:59pm
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NicholasRichardson NicholasRichardson
High speed = Less time emitting CO2 Low speed = Longer time emitting CO2
May 9th, 2013 8:34pm
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xLumino xLumino
hahaha nice joke :D
May 23rd, 2013 7:25pm
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w0bble w0bble
sei do ruig du lumpasäckl, du färsch do eh sicher irget ei roschtlaube
May 9th, 2013 10:37pm
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charlemagne charlemagne
it's not like everyone is driving like crazy at 200+ kmh. most aren't speeding. the 120 kmh speed limit is useless. plus, on autobahn you can run in absolutely safe conditions at 140-150 kmh. problems are the so called 'geisterfahrer'- either suiciders or simply disoriented people who enter on the autobahn on the wrong way and also the traffic jams.
May 9th, 2013 7:23pm
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NYyanks NYyanks
Just like how people dream about coming here to New York City, I dream about driving on the Autobahn.
May 9th, 2013 3:59pm
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imsaid imsaid
Yes stupid driving is the main cause of accidents but lets be fair the more the speed the more the risk and injury
May 9th, 2013 3:51pm
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Dude von Dudenstein Dude von Dudenstein
Stupid far-left hippies! Driving down the Autobahn is on my "things to do before I die" list, and it hasn't been completed yet. Now it'll probably be ruined.Green Party idiots, go drive your Priuses and Volts and Amperas or some other crap, but keep your dirty hands of the Autobahn speed limit goddamnit!
May 9th, 2013 2:10pm
4 0
AudiQuattro AudiQuattro
Faith in humanity has been lost.
May 9th, 2013 10:38am
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alihijazi alihijazi
speed has never killed anybody, suddenly becoming stationary... that's what gets you
May 9th, 2013 10:07am
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NenadMitrovic NenadMitrovic
Said Jeremy.
May 9th, 2013 3:47pm
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alihijazi alihijazi
yes it is Jeremy who said this and he is right
May 9th, 2013 5:19pm
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Alinx Alinx
why our cars can go with 200+ km/h? why?! where is the logic?
May 9th, 2013 7:55am
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Alinx Alinx
we want no speed limit all over and we are the power!! we decide our best!
May 9th, 2013 7:52am
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rjmc rjmc
To be honest, I don't think it will be a huge loss. I drove from Frankfurt to Koln to Hamburg to Berlin and back to Frankfurt (most of the way around Germany) 2 years ago and 90% of the Autobahn had an 80kmph speed limit. It's a joke. There are a few 2-3km sections which have no speed limit, and the rest of it is very much limited. No great loss in my opinion.
May 9th, 2013 6:48am
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scratchy996 scratchy996
80kmph speed limit ? that's because you were driving on country roads.
May 9th, 2013 8:15am
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w0bble w0bble
thats complete bull. about 40 percent of the autobahns are still unrestricted. there are plenty of parts you can drive real fast especially at times of low traffic such as a sunday morning or evening. a lot of the main highways connecting big cities have speed limits because of the amount of traffic and intersections. a lot of them have variable speed limits too. a lot of the less frequented more rural highways often have less speed limits, which might explain your disappointing experience.
May 9th, 2013 10:32pm
0 0
This is a very bad idea! Especially considering the reason their cars are built generally to a higher engineering degree is that they have to be able to cope with 200km/h plus drivers on derestricted parts of the autobahn. By putting on a speed limit the manufacturers will now design most of their cars to handle speeds up to 120km/h thereby creating lower quality cars as an indirect result. The politicians haven't thought this one through.
May 9th, 2013 6:34am
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GuidoP GuidoP
1 more motive not to vote on SPD & "greens" (who are anything else, but never greens).... Anyway, manufacturers may be happy about this: the quality can be lower, the price will be the same - this means more profit. This could be more than enough to finance the campaiogn of SPD & Co.
May 9th, 2013 8:38am
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porsche6616 porsche6616
it's probably good idea to set limit at 160km/hr... what's the point of letting people drive faster than that except to race or do that to have fun... it's not like Europeans are so busy... i am sure people in China with severe traffic jams are still 10 times more productive than Europeans
May 9th, 2013 6:21am
2 9
RuleZ RuleZ
You are clearly on the wrong webpage....now go look at some dolphins!
May 9th, 2013 6:43am
5 1
Although it would be sad to lose the no speed limit Autobahn you are right. Beyond some speeds I would agree the slightest wrong move is harder to correct. The real crime of course would be to set the limit at 120.
May 9th, 2013 7:06am
1 1
scratchy996 scratchy996
@ porsche6616, actually, per capita, Germany is about 10 times more productive than China. Most accidents on the Autobahn are cause by people who transit Germany, people who are not used to driving with high speeds, especially on bad weather. The Green party is concerned with the increased fuel consumption of cars going fast and the gases they make, but not every commuter goes fast, gas is expensive in Europe.
May 9th, 2013 8:13am
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porsche6616 porsche6616
u are probably crazy to compare by per capita... china got 1.3 billion population.. besides.. i am not talking about germany which obviously is the strongest EU country.. i am talking about other countries where people only work 3 hours a day and have 3 hours lunch.. when people are so slack off, why pretend to be in a rush on traffic..
May 9th, 2013 9:48am
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tomi.ro tomi.ro
guess why is there an economic crisis. besides direct interests of having that. i've heard that in some west-european country the government wants to impose a 40 hours work week. lol. we had that in our country for decades, and here they want to make it a 48 hours work week... but this highway stuff is just bulls**t. never trust politicians. they never have the best interest of citizens in their minds.
May 9th, 2013 10:59am
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NicholasRichardson NicholasRichardson
3 hours of work a day and 3 hours of luch???? Where's that country??? I WANNA LIVE THERE!
May 9th, 2013 8:32pm
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scratchy996 scratchy996
@ porsche6616 , this article is about the Autobahn, so we are talking about Germany, or maybe you don't know what the Autobahn is.
May 9th, 2013 1:07pm
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jamsbong jamsbong
These politicians can't wait to satisfy their itchy fingers to issue a ticket. After all, it will be another source of revenue. After doing so, they will start preaching that speed = death. In reality, that is never the case.
May 9th, 2013 3:26am
3 0
what happened?
May 9th, 2013 3:17am
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erzhik erzhik
lack of speed limits don't cause accidents. Stupid drivers cause accidents. I mean, look at US. Speed limit is 60, and people still manage to crash their Priuses.
May 9th, 2013 3:04am
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anneiv anneiv
It won't do anything to automobile industry. As an alternative, there should be more racetracks.
May 9th, 2013 2:33am
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hunker7 hunker7
Get rid of them stupid, fat truck drivers and this is sorted.
May 9th, 2013 1:41am
9 1
CDspeed CDspeed
If I could vote on this I'd vote to leave it as it is, I'm sure more serious accidents happen on country roads because the people who drive the Autobahn to drive super fast are usually paying full attention to their driving.
May 9th, 2013 1:16am
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bert2578 bert2578
Noooo! where else will i be able to hit 200mph? what will this do to the automobile industry
May 9th, 2013 12:47am
2 0
SnakesInMyPants SnakesInMyPants
not much
May 9th, 2013 2:27am
2 0