South Australia could establish special licenses for high-powered vehicles: report

Power limits could soon apply to driving licences, in a major change proposed by the South Australian government.

Licensing reforms could mean drivers in South Australia will soon be subject to vehicle performance limits.

South Australia’s Premier Peter Malinauskas has announced that his government is considering introducing new road safety laws before the end of 2022. ABC News reports, with the potential for a tiered licensing system, including one reserved for performance cars.

Few details have been confirmed so far, however owners will likely need to undergo advanced driving training before being allowed to drive a high-powered car on the road.

The deactivation of traction control in high-powered vehicles may also be prohibited.

Amendments are being considered after a 15-year-old girl was hit and killed by a Lamborghini Huracan supercar in 2019, and the introduction of a new type of “mid-level” driving offense is also being considered in the wake of the event.

The changes could make South Australia an outlier, with current driver’s license guidelines standardized across all Australian states and territories.

Currently, drivers who have full licenses can drive any passenger car, from small urban hatchbacks to high-powered supercars.

While full licenses are the same for cars, trucks, and motorcycles, learner permits and probationary licenses still vary between jurisdictions.

New drivers with a provisional ‘P1’ license from the state are already restricted to “high performance vehicles”, which prohibits cars made before 2010 with eight cylinders or turbochargers.

However, this rule of thumb includes low-performance vehicles like Range Rovers and Saabs, despite having less power than many no-holds-barred, often performance-oriented models.

Vehicles manufactured after January 1, 2010 are judged using a power-to-weight ratio of no more than 130 kW per tonne (tare).

The South Australian government has yet to detail its plans for its proposed tiered licensing scheme for performance cars, an increasingly difficult task in the face of the next wave of new electric family cars, which can offer much higher power levels. high compared to their gasoline counterparts. .

However, HGV licenses could provide a template, with these drivers limited to operating trucks based on weight, transmission, and number of trailers, each requiring different levels of training and testing.

Prime Minister Malinauskas said he expected a “degree of resistance” from drivers in the state.

“I think it’s the right thing to do, I think most of the community thinks it’s the right thing to do,” he told the media.

“If we can prevent one of these accidents from happening again in the future, then that would be a worthwhile endeavor to undertake.”

Ben Zacharias

Ben Zachariah is an experienced writer and automotive journalist from Melbourne who has worked in the automotive industry for over 15 years. Ben was previously an interstate truck driver and completed his MBA in Finance in early 2021. He is considered an expert in the area of ​​classic car investing.

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