Three-quarters of the 9,000 Tesla drivers in the Netherlands were fined for speeding last year, according to figures from the national statistics office CBS. No other car brand showed such a high proportion of speeders.
Wait, it gets worse (or funnier): nearly two-thirds of plug-in hybrid cars were fined at least once for speeding. That means, on Dutch roads, green car drivers are less conscious of speed limits than drivers of polluting cars. Further results showed that last year, 46 % of diesel drivers were caught speeding, but only 28% of drivers with petrol-powered cars broke speed limits.
For advocates of cleaner cars, these results may seem both positive and negative. Clearly, electric vehicles have no problems with acceleration, that should now be blatantly obvious to everybody. But at the same time, something is definitely going wrong here: In total, 5.8 million speeding tickets were issued in the Netherlands last year – and this is the not-so-nice bit – almost half of those were for breaking speed limits in built-up areas. Not exactly good for advertising the superior mentality of those driving cleaner vehicles.
But before we deliver harsh verdicts of drivers with less polluting vehicles, Dutch News suggested two credible reasons for the anomaly: firstly, that company drivers are more likely to speed than those in private cars; and secondly, that the different driving experience of electric drives in comparison to combustion engines, means that electric car drivers were less aware that they were going too fast.
And if we are going to judge speeding drivers according to the brands they drive, of the 30 brands of car available in the Netherlands, Audi drivers more often drive too fast, followed by BMW drivers and Volvo drivers. This would also suggest that if you give a driver a powerful car, they are more likely to want to use that power, even at the expense of the safety of other road users.