Transport for London has just begun testing a new technology that will artificially limit the top speeds of taxis, buses and government fleet vehicles. Called Intelligent Speed Adaptation (ISA), the system will keep track of speed limits all over London and will prevent operators from accelerating past that legal limit. The device is capable of slowing the vehicle down regardless of the driver's wishes.
Alternatively, the system can be switched into an advisory mode that simply informs the driver when the speed limit has been reached. If these tests prove successful, it's likely that the ISA technology will be made available within the next 12 months to private motorists that wish to limit the top speed of their personal vehicles. So far, there's no indication that the government will mandate the use of the ISA system.
It's hoped that a large number of drivers will choose to equip their vehicles with the ISA technology. Transport for London believes that both accidents and road congestion would be drastically reduced, which would also have the desirable effect of reducing fuel consumption and emissions.
[Source: Channel 4, Autocar | Image: Edward Barnieh Photography]