Volvo to Limit Top Speed of New Vehicles from 2020
Volvo wants to make roads safer but Automologist MAC may not agree completely.
Volvo is about to cross an important line by telling new owners how fast they can go in their newly purchased Volvo. The ‘boxy but good’ manufacturer from Sweden will, as a part of its Vision 2020 strategy, limit all of its new vehicles to a top speed of 180 kilometres per hour.
The Vision 2020 strategy aims for no one to be killed or seriously injured in a Volvo car by 2020. It is, of course, a hugely ambitious target and this is the first time that the strategy has looked past driver’s aids and in-car assistance technologies to focus on driver behaviour.
It does raise a question, though. You know if you had the money, you could go and get any number of cars that can easily exceed the speed limit of the roads on which you drive. So, why then are manufacturers allowed to sell us vehicles that will without fail be used to speed? Why aren’t all cars limited to a few kilometres per hour above the maximum national speed limit? It would certainly make police car chases a lot less dramatic.
Volvo says that as much as 25% of all road deaths are caused by speeding. The move to limit the max speed of all new Volvos is necessary as many of their clever gadgets and gismos stop working effectively above that speed. The company is also talking about geo-fencing. This is where the car can sense that it is in a school area or hospital zone and will restrict the speed accordingly.
In addition to the issue of speeding there are drink driving and distraction. Volvo has identified these as major safety issues and plans to add technology to tackle them as well. Not sure how the company will handle the situation whereby you have a sober designated driver and three or four drunk passengers, though.
Of course, Volvo has always been at the vanguard of safety feature developments. But I can’t sort of help feeling like I am being treated like I am some sort of irresponsible adolescent. Get your hands off my accelerator pedal, that is what I say.