Oil shortages due to crisis in Libya forces Spain to lower speed limit from 120km/h to 110km/h
7 March 2011

Spain has been forced to slash its national speed limit from 120km/h (75mph) to 110km/h (68mph) due to rising oil prices sparked by the crisis in Libya and the Arab region.

Spain relies heavily on imported fuel and the BBC claims it gets 13 per cent of this from Libya, where violent clashes and security fears have forced the price of oil up.

Overnight, workmen in Spain placed new 110km/h stickers over more than 6000 signs with the previous 120km/h limit on them. Deputy prime minister Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba said: “We are going to go a bit slower and in exchange we will consume less petrol and pay less money.”

The “exceptional” move is temporary, according to the Spanish government, and will stay in place until the end of June at the earliest.

The move has not proved popular with everyone, however. Spain’s main opposition party, the Popular Party, said: “What next? Will the government make people go to sleep earlier to reduce their consumption of light?"

The Spanish government says the lower speed limit will save 15 per cent on fuel bills, although opposition claims the real figure is around five per cent.

Other measures introduced by the government include cuts in the cost of train travel and subsidies for energy-efficient light bulbs and low-rolling resistance car tyres.

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Dallara Stradale
    The Stradale is the first road-legel car from Italian motorsport constructor Dallara
    First Drive
    16 March 2018
    The motorsport constructor's first road car is inspired by Lotus minimalism. Does it thrill on road and track?
  • Hyundai i30 N
    Standard spec is good so paint colour is our car’s only option
    First Drive
    16 March 2018
    What’s Hyundai’s first hot hatch and N-brand debutant really like? Let’s find out
  • Porsche Boxster GTS
    This is the new GTS version of the Porsche Boxster
    First Drive
    15 March 2018
    The 718-generation Boxster is our favourite roadster of the moment – so is this new GTS variant worth the extra outlay?
  • BMW 5 Series
    First Drive
    15 March 2018
    The BMW 5 Series is top of the mid-exec pack, but is there still room for a diesel saloon in everyday family life?
  • Audi A7 front
    First Drive
    14 March 2018
    The new Audi A7 Sportback looks the part, but how does the new Mercedes-Benz CLS rival cope on UK roads? We find out