Select Committee on Transport, Local Government and the Regions Minutes of Evidence

Examination of Witnesses (Questions 160-164)



  160. Are the manufacturers not interested?
  (Dr Carsten) The manufacturers, we understand, are doing research on this.


  161. Is it research to use it or research to limit it?
  (Dr Carsten) I think the manufacturers would not be opposed to a system that would bring the information into the car, and they might even be willing to sell motorists a system which the motorist could switch on and off at will. Manufacturers are totally and utterly opposed to the idea of mandatory limiters.

Andrew Bennett

  162. How much do you reckon it would add to the cost of a car to put your system in?
  (Dr Carsten) We are talking about a few hundred pounds.

  163. Do you think that it would be better value for money over the next ten years to get that fitted to most vehicles in this country than to go on putting in road humps and all the other traffic-calming methods?
  (Dr Carsten) I do not think it is an either/or. Really this can only come in at a European level. We have to have mandatory European fitment of the capability, and then it is up to each country to decide how to use that capability, whether to have an advisory system, or a voluntary one or whatever. That means, as I said in my submission, that it is not practical for that to take place much before 2013. We would not want to do no traffic calming from now until 2013, so we want to move ahead now on current technology, but we also want to push future technology which will indeed be cheaper and will, for example, offer 20 mph zones for pennies in urban areas, which would be wonderful for highways authorities.

  164. So in 2013 you would impose it with a satellite system, would you, or would you have to have a mapping system put into each car?
  (Dr Carsten) You need both. The satellite tells the vehicle where it is, and the map tells the vehicle how fast it can go in that location, so it is a combination.

  Chairman: Gentlemen, I think you have given us more than enough to think about. We are always very grateful to you, and we do think that your work is tremendously important. Thank you very much for coming this morning.

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