New cars to be fitted with automatic speed limiters across Europe from this week - can they be turned off?

3 July 2024, 09:16

The law won't apply in the UK
The law won't apply in the UK. Picture: Getty
Kieran Kelly

By Kieran Kelly

New cars that are sold in Europe from this week will host automatically-installed speed limiters, following the introduction of a new EU law.

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Even though the rule to install the technology does not apply in the UK, many of the cars will have been made in Europe and so will feature the Intelligent Speed Assistance (ISA) anyway.

The technology allows the car to automatically restrict its speed based on GPS location, speed-sign recognition and cameras within the vehicle.

The feature can be turned off?
The feature can be turned off? Picture: Getty

It does so by reducing the engine power until the relevant speed limit is met.

This is not done simply by applying the brakes, which could be dangerous, but by gradually reducing the engine's power.

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However, drivers will first get a warning that they are driving too fast and be told to slow down before the measure takes affect.

The law will officially come into effect from this Sunday, July 7.

There are currently no plans for the Government to introduce a similar law here in the UK.

A spokesperson for the DfT told This is Money: "The Intelligent Speed Assistance laws coming into effect in July apply to the EU and Northern Ireland only, not Great Britain.

"We are constantly carrying out research into how transport users across all modes can benefit from the latest technology, ensuring journeys are safe, reliable, and cut emissions."

In the EU, drivers will be able to turn off the system every time they start their car. It cannot be permanently shut off.

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