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The French ready to drive at 110 km/h on the motorways

According to an Elabe survey for Le Parisien, 68% of French people say they are ready to drive at 110 km/h instead of 130 km/h on the motorways to fight global warming.

The benefits of lowering to 110 km/h

While Emmanuel Macron had rejected the measure proposed by the members of the Citizens’ Climate Convention in 2020, the debate is tirelessly put back on the table. Although it has often been mentioned in recent years, it has resurfaced in recent weeks around issues of purchasing power and the energy transition.

When does it start COP27 this Sunday in Egypt68% of the French considered it acceptable to lower the maximum speed on the motorway by 20 km/h to bring it up to 110 km/h. “Driving at 110 km/h instead of 130 km/h means -20% less fuel consumption, and -20% on our emission of greenhouse gases. Driving at 110 km/h also means reducing the number of traffic fatalities, bodily injury and help reduce traffic congestion” states the collective of the citizens’ convention.


4.1 liters instead of 5.5 in 150 kilometers

If logically faster driving reduces the journey time for motorists, between 4 and 8 minutes saved per hour, it has been shown through trials that driving 20 km/h slower makes it possible to save fuel.

The Center for Studies and Expertise on Risks, Environment, Mobility and Planning (Cerema) has highlighted that a vehicle at 110 km/h consumes approx. 55 g of fuel per kilometer against 65 g at 130 km/h. The Caradisiac site, for its part, carried out a test under real conditions with two Renault Méganes over a distance of 150 kilometers. Result: Mégane driving at 130 km/ha consumed 5.5 litres, while the one driving at 110 km/ha only consumed 4.1 litres. ONE 25% consumption differenceclose to the 20% estimated by the Citizens’ Climate Convention.

A profit of 9 euros for every 500 kilometers

In terms of savings, the French Environment and Energy Management Agency (ADEME) had demonstrated since 2012 that a reduction in speed made it possible to save approx. 7 euros fuel for 500 kilometers. According to the Caradisiac test under real conditions, the saving on a journey of the same distance would be 9 euros.

Motorists would already be inclined to drive slower, because according to the National Interministerial Observatory for Road Safety (ONISR), the French drive well below 130 km/h. In 2021, French drivers drove an average of 117 km/h during the day and 116 km/h at night. Lowering the maximum speed on motorways therefore does not appear to be a major effort for motorists.

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