One of Germany’s greatest tourist attractions for the benevolent petrol head is thankfully staying open after Germany’s parliament, the Bundestag, has rejected applying a speed limit to the Autobahn.
A speed limit of 130kph (80mph ish) for the motorway network was declined last Thursday after being introduced by the Green Party last year, leaving drivers to openly accelerate to their desired top speed. This is the only road in the world where this is possible, and would have been a great loss if it was restricted.
The Greens put up an interesting argument, with Green Party big shot Cem Özdemir expressing that it would be safer with a lower speed limit and reduce the likelihood of “tailgating and flashing lights.” Cem claimed that “you can’t drive 140 mph in one lane and 80 mph in the next one.”
Of course, this was less about changing and more about making a point in regards to climate change and safety. However, the Autobahn is an incredibly safe road, with the fatality rate of the network being one of the lowest in the world. Plus, if the road was speed restricted, I’m sure more people would take planes to travel, producing far more pollution than a car.
The final vote was 126 for a speed limit, 498 against, with seven abstentions. The Autobahn isn’t going to change for a little while, so we can relax again.