Volvo Speeds Are Going To Be Throttled

Image: Volvo XC40

If you're someone who likes to pick on "bloody Volvo drivers" - we have some more ammo for you!

Earlier today the car manufacturer announced that it will be imposing a speed limit on all of its vehicles by 2020.

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There are a lot of things that can mess a person up whilst watching HBO's Sharp Objects. If murdered teen girls aren't enough, perhaps the imagery of brutally pulled teeth will do the trick. Or the gratuitous sexual assault flashbacks. Even the spiral of self-destruction of protagonist Camille Preaker (Amy Adams) is too much to handle at times. Yet it's none of these single details that have made me replay entire scenes repeatedly. No. It's because Camille drives a rusty red 1980s Volvo 240 GL.

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All new Volvos will be throttled to a stop speed of 112 mph, or 180 km/h here in Australia.

This new initiative will play a big role in the company's pledge for no deaths or serious injuries to occur in new Volvo cars by 2020.

"Volvo is a leader in safety: we always have been and we always will be," Volvo CEO Håkan Samuelsson said.

"While a speed limitation is not a cure-all, it's worth doing if we can even save one life. We want to start a conversation about whether car makers have the right or maybe even an obligation to install technology in cars that changes their driver's behavior, to tackle things like speeding, intoxication or distraction."

Volvo will also be looking at geofencing technology in order to limit speeds around certain areas automatically, such as schools.

It's worth noting that this restriction will not be applied to Volvo's EV brand, Polestar.

Of course, 180 km/h is still a hell of a lot faster than regular speed limits in Australia, or anywhere. The Northern Territory did have a blanket no-limit rule outside of major towns in the past, but this was revoked in 2007. Even the Stuart Highway returned to having an 130km/h in 2016. This is the same limit as Germany's infamous Autobahn.

While this might raise the question of whether such throttling is necessary, speed limits don't stop people from being idiots in cars.

And it's not like many speed freaks opt for Volvos, anyway.

It will be interesting to see how this initiative plays out, and what other tech Volvo will bring in to increase road safety within the speed limits - especially as it moves into the autonomous driving space.

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