The German parliament has shot down a proposal by the country’s Green Party to introduce a 130 km/h (80 mph) speed limit on unrestricted sections of the Autobahn.
Gizmodo reports that the proposal was taken to the Bundestag (that’s the German parliament) for a vote, where it was rejected by a vast majority. In fact, no less than 498 of a total 631 votes were cast against the proposal.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel had already rejected the idea of placing speed limits on unrestricted portions of the Autobahn earlier this year. Similarly, transportation minister Andreas Scheuer canceled a meeting to discuss the recommendations.
According to the Green Party, it knew opposition from the governing coalition would be so strong that the proposal would be rejected. However, Green Party member Cem Özdemir told German public broadcaster ARD that the party often makes proposals like this without mainstream support in the belief that they will slowly gain popularity and support over time.
Anyone who has driven on the Autobahn will tell you that it is an automotive enthusiast’s paradise. Nowhere else on continental Europe are there such large sections of de-restricted motorway, so it’s something unique to Germany. The Green Party cited safety as one of the main reasons why it wanted to impose speed limits. Some had also suggested that imposing limits could help reduce the country’s carbon footprint significantly, a claim that was rebuffed by Germany’s Environment Ministry.