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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Does anyone else think that the UK dept. of transport should introduce 'stepped' licensing for the use of powerful cars on the roads?
I don't know if anyone in the UK has noticed that recently over the past 10 years or so road cars have become more and more powerful, there always seems to be articles in the news of how high powered, and dare say it German saloon cars, are involved in serious road accidents. During the 90's stepped motorcycle licences were introduced, over here anyway, to stop young riders passing a test then jumping on the most powerful bike they could get hold of. I personally knew 3 blokes back then who had some very serious 'spills', one of them died as a result before the laws were changed.
Maybe it's about time the same system was introduced for cars, that after all are a lot bigger and heavier than a bike so therefore can cause a whole lot more damage. It just seems crazy to me that you can pass quite a basic car driving test in the UK then climb in a 500+ hp car.
 

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Does anyone else think that the UK dept. of transport should introduce 'stepped' licensing for the use of powerful cars on the roads?
I don't know if anyone in the UK has noticed that recently over the past 10 years or so road cars have become more and more powerful, there always seems to be articles in the news of how high powered, and dare say it German saloon cars, are involved in serious road accidents. During the 90's stepped motorcycle licences were introduced, over here anyway, to stop young riders passing a test then jumping on the most powerful bike they could get hold of. I personally knew 3 blokes back then who had some very serious 'spills', one of them died as a result before the laws were changed.
Maybe it's about time the same system was introduced for cars, that after all are a lot bigger and heavier than a bike so therefore can cause a whole lot more damage. It just seems crazy to me that you can pass quite a basic car driving test in the UK then climb in a 500+ hp car.
... are you sure your motive isn鈥檛 a little jealousy at car drivers not having incremental licences, whereas us bikers have a torturous route to unrestricted riding?

I don鈥檛 think the average car is becoming any more powerful (probably the opposite as more fuel efficient models have become available), and the car market is somewhat self moderating in that 500 HP cars all cost over 拢100,000 and would be impossible for 17 year old to insure in the UK. The bike market is rather different in that a fairly recent 160 HP bike can be picked up for under 拢10,000 - something many people could afford if they do wished. I won鈥檛 let my son (15 now) ride a large bike on the road when he is 17, but I may well loan him my Porsche occasionally once I think he is competent.

I grudgingly have to admit that the present system of graduated licensing for bikers (such that one must be 26 before getting an unrestricted licence) is saving riders鈥 lives, but I see little evidence of 17 year olds creating carnage in 500 HP cars (they manage to do that in their 50 HP Fiat 500s perfectly well).

Well, those are my thoughts.

Best wishes,

Alan


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Discussion Starter #5
... are you sure your motive isn鈥檛 a little jealousy at car drivers not having incremental licences, whereas us bikers have a torturous route to unrestricted riding?

I don鈥檛 think the average car is becoming any more powerful (probably the opposite as more fuel efficient models have become available), and the car market is somewhat self moderating in that 500 HP cars all cost over 拢100,000 and would be impossible for 17 year old to insure in the UK. The bike market is rather different in that a fairly recent 160 HP bike can be picked up for under 拢10,000 - something many people could afford if they do wished. I won鈥檛 let my son (15 now) ride a large bike on the road when he is 17, but I may well loan him my Porsche occasionally once I think he is competent.

I grudgingly have to admit that the present system of graduated licensing for bikers (such that one must be 26 before getting an unrestricted licence) is saving riders鈥 lives, but I see little evidence of 17 year olds creating carnage in 500 HP cars (they manage to do that in their 50 HP Fiat 500s perfectly well).

Well, those are my thoughts.

Best wishes,

Alan


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I'm not to bothered personally about incremental bike licences, I got mine way back, although my 17 year old son has just started out down the long and arduous route towards gaining a full license. It may be just me but within the last month alone the local press has reported several serious accidents involving powerful cars. I agree that a younger person would have difficulty in buying a high performance car and indeed insuring one. But it seems that even older driver's are buying these vehicles without being fully aware of the power. So perhaps another alternative would be to get buyers of such vehicles to undergo some sort of advance test before they can get insurance for such a car.
Just an idea.
 

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I see your sentiment, but it would be horribly difficult to regulate.

My Porsche has lots more safety features as well as far better tyres, suspension and brakes than all 50 HP economy cars, it also has 300 HP, but does that make it intrinsically more dangerous? I can鈥檛 help thinking the lowered and breathed on XR2s I see youngsters driving around in are far more dangerous.

I just think this would be a minefield to administer (like bike licensing is, but I see the reason for that).

Alan


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Discussion Starter #7
I see your sentiment, but it would be horribly difficult to regulate.

My Porsche has lots more safety features as well as far better tyres, suspension and brakes than all 50 HP economy cars, it also has 300 HP, but does that make it intrinsically more dangerous? I can鈥檛 help thinking the lowered and breathed on XR2s I see youngsters driving around in are far more dangerous.

I just think this would be a minefield to administer (like bike licensing is, but I see the reason for that).

Alan


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To me it's very much like alcohol, this to is fine as long as you are careful with it and understand the mess it can make if you're not. I'm not saying everyone who drives a high powered car is an idiot, it's just there seems to be some that are not particularly careful. So in a sense it's the 'one bad apple theory' and to be honest I haven't seen that many local press stories involving 'boy racer' accidents.
 

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As already mentioned, very very challenging to enforce & regulate as VOSA, under DoT already work alongside the Police in these matters although it鈥檒l take years to replace what鈥檚 been lost in recent years.

Personally, the UK vehicle modding/tuning scene has evolved continuously since the 80/90鈥檚 & whether it be motorcycle, car, van or truck it鈥檚 @ huge industry. I鈥檝e a D4 & I couldn鈥檛 care less about someone with 300hp+ as long as it鈥檚 driven safely & within the law.

Lastly, in an ideal world l鈥檇 like to see high performance vehicles sold or hired have a caveat where the driver/owner must attend a suitable advanced driving course however as previously stated difficult to regulate.


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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't it the rise of the Jap sports bikes, CBR's and the likes of the late 80's early 90's that brought about the incremental bike licensing rules, but I honestly can't remember if there was a massive increase in insurance premiums as well. Anyway now, years later it has seen that riders who step up to higher powered bikes after passing the right test's do appear to be safer, so would the same not happen if a similar system was introduced for car drivers? I can't speak for the whole of the UK, but down here in Dorset there are some unashamedly snobby younger people who do go out and purchase said high powered vehicles.

Nothing to do with bikes or cars, but here's a typical well off youth from Dorset https://www.bournemouthecho.co.uk/news/18082261.oliver-george-spared-jail-fake-gun-sandbanks-yacht-club/
 

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Here in the US where there is no tiered licensing for a motorcycle and high HP cars are prevalent even in basic SUV types, it all comes down to the person behind the wheel or bars, no matter the age. Laws in many countries have become enacted to modify or control human nature, but those who abide by those laws aren't the ones who need to take heed. Nanny state type legislation in my view just creates a simmering resentment by the populace.
 

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Keeping young, inexperienced drivers out of powerful cars has never really been an issue here unless they have uber rich parents. Try checking out the price for say a 19 year old living in central Birmingham, trying to insure a 5 litre Merc for example. Not to mention the road tax. Sandbanks isn't really typical of the rest of the UK.
 

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Here in the US where there is no tiered licensing for a motorcycle and high HP cars are prevalent even in basic SUV types, it all comes down to the person behind the wheel or bars, no matter the age. Laws in many countries have become enacted to modify or control human nature, but those who abide by those laws aren't the ones who need to take heed. Nanny state type legislation in my view just creates a simmering resentment by the populace.
As a person that has taken driving and riding tests in both England and Virginia, I would tend to agree. The US tests were both trivial compared with the British versions, but I didn鈥檛 particularly feel any better prepared by the latter.

I suppose the difference is that in England a huge number of us have to co-exist in a pretty small space. I understand why the more difficult licensing exists in England, but I do resent the nanny state here (the same is the case for firearms).

That being said (and as I said above), I grudgingly have to agree that graduated motorcycle licensing does save lives here in the UK, because it discourages youngsters from biking (which is a really hazardous occupation in England compared with Virginia, or anywhere else in the USA). I鈥檝e been riding bikes on British roads for 40 years, but I will discourage my son from doing so when he turns 17 in two year鈥檚 time.

Enjoy riding in the USA, it is much safer and rather more fun than here in England (but we will continue to ride here because we love it).

Best wishes,

Alan


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Discussion Starter #13
Keeping young, inexperienced drivers out of powerful cars has never really been an issue here unless they have uber rich parents. Try checking out the price for say a 19 year old living in central Birmingham, trying to insure a 5 litre Merc for example. Not to mention the road tax. Sandbanks isn't really typical of the rest of the UK.
Yes unfortunately you're right Sandbanks isn't that representative of the rest of Great Britain, but hopefully with the help of climate change Sandbanks should be underwater in a few years time.
 

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From observation, always thought salesmen in GTi's late for an appointment were the biggest hazard at roundabouts. :cool:
 

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The area where I live the greatest danger comes from elderly ( older than me ) drivers who are driving minus many of their senses in full working order . Most youngsters are for the most part switched on ( I do have a niece and two nephews who increase danger levels when behind the wheel ) .
 

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Discussion Starter #17
The area where I live the greatest danger comes from elderly ( older than me ) drivers who are driving minus many of their senses in full working order . Most youngsters are for the most part switched on ( I do have a niece and two nephews who increase danger levels when behind the wheel ) .
Are they elderly drivers in high powered cars? we get a lot of them around Bournemouth, the idle rich.
 

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No power isn't the problem sub 20 mph and lack of observation through disability ( blindish deaf arthritic neck etc ) . Drive with the mindset TANKETY TANK TANKETY TANK like they are in a panzer .
 

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Discussion Starter #19
No power isn't the problem sub 20 mph and lack of observation through disability ( blindish deaf arthritic neck etc ) . Drive with the mindset TANKETY TANK TANKETY TANK like they are in a panzer .
I ride to commute most of the time and over the years I've noticed that you need to give the elderly a wide berth as with kids in 'boy racer' cars, young women in Audi's, SUV drivers, van driver's etc....... In fact I think almost everybody on the road in a 4 wheeled vehicle needs to be seen as the 'enemy' :rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter #20
On the subject of overly powerful cars has anyone else seen this horrible piece of climate destroyer,

715565


This thing weighs almost 2.5 tonnes, is over 5 metres long, over 2 metres wide, the most powerful model is 530 HP, has a 4.4 litre engine and can do 0-60 in just under 5 seconds.
Believe me I'm not writing this out of jealousy, far from it, this hideous machine could do some serious damage in the wrong hands, is there really any need for something like this these days?
 
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