Every state in the United States has a speed limit, which drivers must legally follow. With that in mind, why are cars designed to go over the speed limit? If it’s illegal to speed, why can cars drive so fast? There are multiple reasons.
Cars can exceed the speed limit in emergency situations
In normal driving situations, it is not necessary to exceed the speed limit. However, what if you were in a remote area and your friend had a heart attack and there were no first responders nearby to help them? You should rush to the nearest hospital to save your friend’s life. The same goes for a woman who goes into labor.
There are many emergency situations that would justify driving above the speed limit. However, let’s be clear. Having to pee is not an emergency. Although some people use this as an excuse when pulled over by a cop, it is not an excuse for speeding.
Faster cars improve performance
Even if you don’t go over the speed limit, it’s beneficial to design a faster car to improve performance capabilities. By having a more powerful engine in a car, several elements of performance will be improved. When a top speed increases, it usually results in a faster acceleration time. A faster car also helps with driving dynamics, such as cornering skills.
Automakers super-engineer cars to improve reliability
Another reason car manufacturers design their cars to go over the speed limit is to super-engineer them to improve reliability. By making a vehicle that can drive up to 120 mph, there is less stress on the engine when it goes through a 65 mph life.
Cars that can go faster than the speed limit are safer and more fuel efficient
Designing cars that can exceed the speed limit is beneficial for safety and fuel economy as it relates to the transmission. In order to create smooth transitions throughout the stream, you need to increase the maximum speed. Motor Hills details how “if a car had a top speed of 65 mph, your car would be red the entire time you’re on the freeway.”
Also, a transmission designed to allow a faster speed reduces the amount of gas a car uses. It takes a considerable amount of energy to turn a large gear. If a vehicle didn’t have such a high speed capability, it wouldn’t be able to turn large gears as efficiently.
You can drive as fast as you want on a track
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Some cars are designed to go fast for people who want to drive them around a track. Many drivers of supercars like the Lamborghini Huracán and Bugatti Chiron rarely take them beyond residential streets. However, others take their supercars and sports cars to the track and push them to the limits of their performance capabilities.
Other countries have less speeding restrictions
Some other countries have less speeding restrictions. With that in mind, it makes sense to design cars that can go faster than is legally allowed in the United States. A notable example is the Autobahn, which is the freeway system in Germany that has no speed limit.
Whether it’s emergency situations, performance enhancement, over-engineering for reliability, safety, fuel economy, track driving and lower speed limits in other countries, there are many reasons to design cars that they can drive faster than the speed limit.
Correction: An earlier version listed Montana as an exception to the speed limit.
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