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Author Topic: Fast Cars with Speed Limits???
Zeus
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Icon 2 posted February 03, 2006 12:49      Profile for Zeus     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I love BMW and Mercedes. They produce these fine cars. The interior is good, performance is good, luxurious in almost every aspect....

I love Germany (no I'm not a Nazi or a German). They have these motorways called the Autobahn which has no speed limit...

Why is it then that people who have roads with no speed limits create fast cars but limit them to 250 km/h - 155 mph. [Confused]

Germans are crazy and speed limits are the devil... [devil wand]

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magefile
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Icon 1 posted February 03, 2006 15:22      Profile for magefile     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Scariest car situation I've ever been in? Going from the parking lot of the Frankfurt airport right on to the Autobahn. Scared the shit out of me, and I wasn't even the one driving! Heck, we were in a huge BMW, too; I can't even imagine the cojones it'd take to do that in a Smart Car.

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Let them be stupid - the market will sort it out.

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maximile

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Icon 1 posted February 03, 2006 20:18      Profile for maximile   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Zeus:
I love BMW and Mercedes. They produce these fine cars. The interior is good, performance is good, luxurious in almost every aspect....

I love Germany (no I'm not a Nazi or a German). They have these motorways called the Autobahn which has no speed limit...

Why is it then that people who have roads with no speed limits create fast cars but limit them to 250 km/h - 155 mph. [Confused]

Germans are crazy and speed limits are the devil... [devil wand]

No one would have considered you to be a Nazi for loving Germany. That's a fairly odd comment.

And what's this about speed limits? Are they evil just because you like to drive fast? Perhaps you should consider that a lot of thought goes into determining what the speed limit for an area should be, and that obeying the speed limit can - and frequently does - save lives.

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Xanthine

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Icon 1 posted February 03, 2006 20:28      Profile for Xanthine     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Zeus:

Why is it then that people who have roads with no speed limits create fast cars but limit them to 250 km/h - 155 mph. [Confused]

Don't like it? Then get a race car and have fun finding fuel.

There's a limit to what your typical passenger car with an internal combustion engine can do.

And stop bitching. My scaly POS car can almost make it to 85 mph. With high octane fuel. Going downhill. In a tailwind. Most of the time, out on the highways, I'm just wishing I could make the limit, forget about speeding. :/

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And it's one, two, three / On the wrong side of the lee / What were you meant for? / What were you meant for?
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Zeus
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Icon 1 posted February 06, 2006 11:24      Profile for Zeus     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Spoil Sports...

BTW: The topic is fast cars not "Finding Fuel"...but going downhill in a small car with wind trying to blow you of the road sounds like a real thrill. Point is though...they should take the speed limit off!!!!!!!!!

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If you can't convince them, confuse them.

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Xanthine

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Icon 1 posted February 06, 2006 11:28      Profile for Xanthine     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Can they?

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And it's one, two, three / On the wrong side of the lee / What were you meant for? / What were you meant for?
- The Decemberists

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Grummash

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Icon 1 posted February 06, 2006 12:20      Profile for Grummash     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
originally posted by Zeus:
Why is it then that people who have roads with no speed limits create fast cars but limit them to 250 km/h - 155 mph. [Confused]

Fast cars are built:

1) As a exercise in engineering development.
2) To help differentiate 'luxury' products from the bland and average. This enables a huge premium to be added to the true manufacturing cost, thereby recouping some of the outlay involved in satisfying the first objective.


Speed-limiters are fitted to fast cars to prevent idiots with little willies from killing people whilst trying to impress prospective sexual conquests with their driving "skills". [Razz]


Perhaps the lack of speed limits on autobahns is a throwback to the days when automobiles couldn't reach much of a dangereous speed anyway, so they weren't needed. Nowadays of course, car manufacturers must prefer these free, publicly maintained testing tracks rather have to pay to build and run proper testing circuits. So maybe the answer to your question is that there is a trade-off between the car industry and the politicians, whereby the autobahns stay speed-limit free in return for a limited top-speed on luxury cars.

It's a thought. [Smile]

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Samantha
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Icon 1 posted February 06, 2006 12:48      Profile for Samantha     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
As far as I know, most of the autobahns now have speed limits on them and the German police take a dim view on people driving at excessive speed on the remaining unrestriced ones. Maybe they don't like having to clean up after a crash - if someone goes through the windscreen at 155mph they will leave a very long stain on the road.

High speeds in cars on public roads are not safe. Even if you are the best driver in the world (I doubt anyone reading this is even close,) other road users won't be able to cope with traffic travelling at high speeds - to that end, the best driver in the world will be driving at an appropriate speed in condsideration of the abilities of others around her.

What I don't understand, living in a country with a 70mph speed limit, is why are cars capable of 155mph available?

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drunkennewfiemidget
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Icon 1 posted February 06, 2006 13:16      Profile for drunkennewfiemidget     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
This was a duplicate thread, and I'd imagine Snaggy deleted one of them, which happened to be the one I replied to.

I'm not really one to preach about speed limits, as I'm not really known to follow them (I do, within reason, but.. you get the point.) so take what I say with a grain of salt.

Speed limits are set by urban planners. They take into account road width, controlled access or not, length of on/off ramps, frequency of traffic lights, distance from residential zones, etc.

Another thing that's taken into account is GAS MILEAGE! You'll probably notice your car gets its best gas mileage somewhere in the 80-110km/h range (Google for you Americans who use that broken mph crap. [Wink] )

While I do believe that some speed limits are antiquated (such as 100km/h on Ontario highways), they're there to reduce the likelihood of an accident, and the likelihood of the accidents that do occur of being fatal.

That said, I would like to see police a little more lenient on me if I decide to cruise down the 401 at 140km/h when there's little to no traffic anywhere in sight because it's 3 in the morning.

Also, most cars top speeds are limited not by their engines, but revv limiters. They're required by many state/province/country laws, etc. My car is *capable* of > 2??km/h in 6th gear at 6000rpm, but there's a revv limiter that'd likely keep me in the 190-210km/h range. I'm not sure though, I've never tried it.

My general rule of thumb for driving is as such:

City streets, I will not exceed the limit by more than 15km/h. (The point at which you're handed demerit points on your license as well as a fine.) Unless it's a school zone, or heavily residential zone, and especially during times kids are likely to be out playing. Places with 40km/h limits are usually as such for a reason, and I won't exceed it.

Industrial and commercial city streets generally have speed limits of 50-70km/h.. I won't exceed those by more than 15km/h.

80km/h I'll usually do 95-100km/h.

100km/h, I usually do anywhere between 115-140km/h. I'm known to cruise down the 401 generally at around 130km/h, and I've driven through speed traps, and have never been pulled over ONCE for speeding out there, despite driving to and from Ottawa from Kitchener about 70 times in the last 3 years or so.

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ChildeRoland
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Icon 1 posted February 06, 2006 13:51      Profile for ChildeRoland     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by magefile:
we were in a huge BMW, too; I can't even imagine the cojones it'd take to do that in a Smart Car.

They build cars to handle those speeds [personally I am aware of the fact that BMWs are just overpriced status symbols, in the USA. The fact is that their cars are much safer at high speed than most cars on American roads (see Audi/VW/Porsche, Mercedes,)].

They have that speed because they have the cars to handle it. They have the cars, 'cause they're German and they have the roads for it (2 different reasons). It's really a chicken and egg thing.

I think, it also has a lot to do with the drivers. It seemed to me, from my limited time there, that German drivers are better, on average, than Americans. I've been around the airports in Frankfurt and Berlin and I feel a lot safer (even though the situation may seem dangerous) than I would in America.

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Stereo

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Icon 1 posted February 07, 2006 06:58      Profile for Stereo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by drunkennewfiemidget:
While I do believe that some speed limits are antiquated (such as 100km/h on Ontario highways), they're there to reduce the likelihood of an accident, and the likelihood of the accidents that do occur of being fatal.

I know in Quebec, there is a relatively new rule in use: take into account road and temperature condition and average traffic speed, and drive accordingly. If, on a clear blue summer afternoon, everyone drives at 130 km/h, and you do 90 km/h, you'll get pulled for not driving fast enough, while only those going over 140 km/h (or driving dangerously) will get pulled for driving too fast. On the other hand, driving 100 km/h on a winter storm night, when everyone is at 50-60 km/h, you'll get ticketed for speeding.

Still, I get my little Smart car to go a sappy 115-120 km/h on highways. I even got it over 125 km/h a couple of times.I [hearts] my cutie car! (But some people don't like me to draw ahead of them. More than a few time, I started passing them, and they accelerated to match my speed.)

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Eppur, si muove!

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Maggs
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Icon 1 posted February 07, 2006 08:14      Profile for Maggs     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Doesn't a car's speedometer listed up to 150 MPH etc encourage risky driving.

The maximum speed limits in some parts of NYS are 65 -70 MPH on the NYS Thruway.

Does an average driver have the reaction time to handle those high speeds?

Are car manufacturers, encouraging reckless behavior by putting the speed limits so high in their cars?

Here's some stopping distance info for reference:

http://tinyurl.com/ajf4n
http://tinyurl.com/cd6y7

If you tell a person you can't do something, they are more likely, to want to "stick it to the man" in a sense.

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drunkennewfiemidget
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Icon 1 posted February 07, 2006 08:24      Profile for drunkennewfiemidget     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Stereo:
quote:
Originally posted by drunkennewfiemidget:
While I do believe that some speed limits are antiquated (such as 100km/h on Ontario highways), they're there to reduce the likelihood of an accident, and the likelihood of the accidents that do occur of being fatal.

I know in Quebec, there is a relatively new rule in use: take into account road and temperature condition and average traffic speed, and drive accordingly. If, on a clear blue summer afternoon, everyone drives at 130 km/h, and you do 90 km/h, you'll get pulled for not driving fast enough, while only those going over 140 km/h (or driving dangerously) will get pulled for driving too fast. On the other hand, driving 100 km/h on a winter storm night, when everyone is at 50-60 km/h, you'll get ticketed for speeding.

Still, I get my little Smart car to go a sappy 115-120 km/h on highways. I even got it over 125 km/h a couple of times. I [hearts] my cutie car! (But some people don't like me to draw ahead of them. More than a few time, I started passing them, and they accelerated to match my speed.)

I'm not entirely sure that the police would ticket you for going too slowly if you're in the right lane doing 100km/h in the right lane on the 401 if everyone else is doing 130, but I do know they *will* ticket you for speeding if you're doing 95 or 100 in a 100 and everyone else is going 50-60 due to inclement weather.

It's either that or dangerous driving -- I'd take the speeding ticket, thanks.

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Luke Skywalker
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Icon 1 posted February 07, 2006 09:17      Profile for Luke Skywalker     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Speedlimit in NC on interstate highways is 70mph max. Parts are 65 or 55, depending on where you are (eg, cities, mountains etc.) Normally when I go between home and Raleigh (college) I do about 75 to 80. Though if Ive got someone around me doing 90 and a radar detector, I might follow them for a bit. Highest Ive hit was 95 once.

Untill several years ago, it used to be unlimited speed limits in Dakota states and Montana. I think they changed that though. I know one of the Dakota states is now 85 for interstates. But their thinking is, its hills and mountains, and you want to kill ure self going that fast, go ahead. Plus its very sparce out there, and very little traffic out there as well.

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supaboy
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Icon 1 posted February 07, 2006 10:15      Profile for supaboy     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Xanthine:
Then get a race car and have fun finding fuel.

Race fuel is, conveniently enough, sold at pumps at the tracks. [Smile]

quote:
Originally posted by Grummash:
Speed-limiters are fitted to fast cars to prevent idiots with little willies from killing people whilst trying to impress prospective sexual conquests with their driving "skills".

It's a gentleman's agreement between the various manufacturers to limit cars to 155mph. That limit is way too high to be anything resembling a safety device.

quote:
Originally posted by Samantha:
What I don't understand, living in a country with a 70mph speed limit, is why are cars capable of 155mph available?

It's a byproduct of having an engine powerful enough to accelerate quickly to, say, 70mph, that the engine can actually move the car much faster. Gearing to limit the top-end speed to 70mph mechanically would result in poor fuel economy. Limiting speeds to 70mph electronically smacks of nanny-state-ism.

quote:
Originally posted by drunkennewfiemidget:
Another thing that's taken into account is GAS MILEAGE! You'll probably notice your car gets its best gas mileage somewhere in the 80-110km/h range (Google for you Americans who use that broken mph crap. [Wink] )

Your km/h is no better for fuel economy comparisons than mph. What you really want is brake specific fuel consumption. Just to annoy you, the standard units are pounds of fuel per horsepower-hour. [Smile]

quote:
Originally posted by drunkennewfiemidget:
Also, most cars top speeds are limited not by their engines, but revv limiters. They're required by many state/province/country laws, etc.

Citation? I'm not buying your argument that they're required by law. There'd have to be provisions for every different engine, or Honda's high-revving V-TEC 3.0l V6 motors would be horribly handicapped vs. Nissan's twin-turbocharged 3.0l V6 motors, yet the NSX and the 300ZX Twin Turbo were not in totally different speed classes.

No, I think automakers put them on after taking a look at the expected use of a motor and the kinds of stress it will see. Then, Nissan (for example) can put a VG30 in a truck, a VG30 in a sedan, a VG30 in a minivan, and a VG30 in a sports car.

quote:
Originally posted by ChildeRoland:
I think, it also has a lot to do with the drivers. It seemed to me, from my limited time there, that German drivers are better, on average, than Americans.

I don't know how true it is, but I've read that the license requirements for drivers are much stricter in Germany than the USA. That would tend to weed out the bad ones, I think. However, since I've never lived in a city where the public transportation made it out to the suburbs, we're stuck with lots of private cars.

quote:
Originally posted by Maggs:
Are car manufacturers, encouraging reckless behavior by putting the speed limits so high in their cars?

No. People engage in reckless behavior for the sake of being reckless. That is, people will do stupid things in cars because they fail to think or realize a full situational awareness. People who don't tend to do stupid things in cars will probably continue to avoid stupid behavior, no matter how many extra airbags the automakers cram in there!
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Ugh, MightyClub
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Icon 1 posted February 07, 2006 11:21      Profile for Ugh, MightyClub     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by drunkennewfiemidget:
That said, I would like to see police a little more lenient on me if I decide to cruise down the 401 at 140km/h when there's little to no traffic anywhere in sight because it's 3 in the morning.

Just tooling along, eh? Taking a Sunday drive, so to speak.

I'm a bit confused though, because...

quote:
Newf later said:
I'm known to cruise down the 401 generally at around 130km/h, and I've driven through speed traps, and have never been pulled over ONCE for speeding out there, despite driving to and from Ottawa from Kitchener about 70 times in the last 3 years or so.

Why do you want the po-po to be more lenient on you if you've never been pulled over? Or should I extrapolate from this that you've been safe at 130km/h but not at 140km/h?

And finally,
quote:
Supaboy said:
quote:
Originally posted by Maggs:
Are car manufacturers, encouraging reckless behavior by putting the speed limits so high in their cars?

No. People engage in reckless behavior for the sake of being reckless. That is, people will do stupid things in cars because they fail to think or realize a full situational awareness. People who don't tend to do stupid things in cars will probably continue to avoid stupid behavior, no matter how many extra airbags the automakers cram in there!
Easy, there, Supa. You're heading dangerously close to a "Guns Do/Don't Kill People" debate. [ohwell]

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Ugh!

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drunkennewfiemidget
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Icon 1 posted February 07, 2006 11:30      Profile for drunkennewfiemidget     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Well, I know if I go 140, I will likely be pulled over. And I know many people who have been pulled over on the 401. And I've been pulled over plenty of times on highways that aren't the 401.
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Rednivek

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Icon 1 posted February 07, 2006 20:56      Profile for Rednivek     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
2 major reasons for factory delivery of a speed governed vehicle:

1) Tire rating. V/Z normally 149. You can get exotics, but...

2) Insurance rating. Same reason some sports cars have useless back seats.

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Rednivek - Detroit, Michigan, USA

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maximile

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Icon 1 posted February 08, 2006 03:13      Profile for maximile   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by supaboy:
There'd have to be provisions for every different engine, or Honda's high-revving V-TEC 3.0l V6 motors would be horribly handicapped vs. Nissan's twin-turbocharged 3.0l V6 motors, yet the NSX and the 300ZX Twin Turbo were not in totally different speed classes.

I think that he means that it'll stop the engine revving any faster once the car reaches a certain speed, not that there's a maximum RPM set by law. I don't think any manufacturer would be required to limit the revs; that'd compromise all sorts of things.

That's certainly how it seems to work in the Smart car (the only car I've driven that had a limiter).

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ChildeRoland
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Icon 1 posted February 08, 2006 05:49      Profile for ChildeRoland     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Maggs:
Doesn't a car's speedometer listed up to 150 MPH etc encourage risky driving.

The maximum speed limits in some parts of NYS are 65 -70 MPH on the NYS Thruway.

Does an average driver have the reaction time to handle those high speeds?

Are car manufacturers, encouraging reckless behavior by putting the speed limits so high in their cars?

Here's some stopping distance info for reference:

http://tinyurl.com/ajf4n
http://tinyurl.com/cd6y7

If you tell a person you can't do something, they are more likely, to want to "stick it to the man" in a sense.

As long as the person is giving a good 2-3 second following distance they should have plenty of time to react and/or stop, regardless of speed. Of course that depends the person paying attention and having a car that can brake reliably (see my earlier post).

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Childe Roland

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supaboy
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Icon 1 posted February 08, 2006 08:59      Profile for supaboy     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Ugh, MightyClub:
Easy, there, Supa. You're heading dangerously close to a "Guns Do/Don't Kill People" debate. [ohwell]

I'm not coming down for or against gun control: people had been murdering each other long before then invention of guns. Guns make it astonishingly easy to kill another person, as does any car capable of traveling faster than a person can run away from. Getting pasted by a Toyota Corolla at 45mph isn't going to kill you any less dead than a BMW M5 at 130mph; however, your remains may be retrievable with hors d'ouvre toothpicks in the former case rather than spatulas and a water hose in the latter. [Smile]

quote:
Originally posted by maximile:
I think that he means that it'll stop the engine revving any faster once the car reaches a certain speed, not that there's a maximum RPM set by law.

Well, he said rev limiter and not speed limiter. They're different! They may use the same mechanism to achieve the ends, though.

quote:
Originally posted by ChildeRoland:
As long as the person is giving a good 2-3 second following distance...

I read someone's take on that, that I though was pretty smart. They had a four-second rule: four seconds between the car behind you and the car in front of you. So if the car behind is following too closely, you pad your distance to the car in front to (hopefully) avoid being rear-ended if you have to stop suddenly. It's a bit more difficult in practice, though.
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Icon 1 posted February 08, 2006 09:42      Profile for Sxeptomaniac   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I know my Saturn has a rev limiter. It's primarily intended to keep idiots from accidentally ruining the engine, as far as I can tell, and isn't mandated.

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Let's pray that the human race never escapes from Earth to spread its iniquity elsewhere. - C. S. Lewis

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Stereo

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Icon 1 posted February 08, 2006 09:55      Profile for Stereo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by supaboy:
I read someone's take on that, that I though was pretty smart. They had a four-second rule: four seconds between the car behind you and the car in front of you. So if the car behind is following too closely, you pad your distance to the car in front to (hopefully) avoid being rear-ended if you have to stop suddenly. It's a bit more difficult in practice, though.

Unfortunately, other drivers who don't practice that "buffer space" technique will use the space you carfully kept to change lanes right in front of you to let a crazy speeder pass. So if the crazy speeder looses control while zig-zagging through traffic, and causes an accident, you're done anyway.

Also, I make it a point to be able to see the headlights of the car I just passed in my main mirror before changing lane, but I had some people use that space to rush past me from the right side. (That would be left, for the UK and Japan people.)

My conclusion is: it's not for the average driver that speed is limited, but for the crazy ones, even though they'll find a way to put the average ones into trouble anyway. Only really good drivers who know how to react and regularly practice their reflexes for the various techniques can speed with relative safety.

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Eppur, si muove!

Galileo Galilei

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maximile

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Icon 1 posted February 08, 2006 10:16      Profile for maximile   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by supaboy:
Well, he said rev limiter and not speed limiter. They're different! They may use the same mechanism to achieve the ends, though.

Perhaps I'm getting confused, then. I thought that the rev limiter was the device through which a speed limiter works.

But actually, when I think about it, I'm not sure I ever read this. I might just be making it up.

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Icon 1 posted February 09, 2006 07:00      Profile for supaboy     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Stereo:
Also, I make it a point to be able to see the headlights of the car I just passed in my main mirror before changing lane, but I had some people use that space to rush past me from the right side. (That would be left, for the UK and Japan people.)

Last night, in falling snow and wet roads, another driver dove across my lane to make a right turn, which I was also attempting to make. They skidded to a stop through a yield sign, but we had the green light so there was no need to stop anyway. It was a piece of astoundingly bad driving, and none of it would have happened if he'd changed lanes behind me instead of "needing" to be in front of me. We went to different, adjacent restaurants, and I seriously considered administering a verbal beat-down, but I just let it go instead.

quote:
Originally posted by Stereo:
My conclusion is: it's not for the average driver that speed is limited, but for the crazy ones

I would agree, but the top-speed limiters on cars (I know one Saturn I drove, it was at 105mph, for the only real example I can provide) are set too high to be a safety device for anything except like Rednivek said: to keep from exceeding the tire's speed limits.

quote:
Originally posted by maximile:
Perhaps I'm getting confused, then. I thought that the rev limiter was the device through which a speed limiter works.

That's the easiest way to do it, but you could also do it with the throttle on drive-by-wire controlled engines where the pedal is not mechanically connected to the throttle. That would avoid the st-st-stutter of cutting the fuel flow. But it is much more common to do it the way you think it's done.
Posts: 1767 | From: Columbia, SC USA | Registered: Jan 2000  |  IP: Logged


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