There will be no general speed limit on German motorways in the future. A proposal for a limitation to 130 kilometers per hour failed on Friday - as expected - in the Federal Council. In addition to motorways, the change would also have affected other roads, for which no speed limit has so far applied.
The speed limit had come from the Federal Council's Environment Committee. It mainly consists of Green State Ministers. Proponents of a speed limit hope that this will result in fewer fatalities and more climate protection. But there is resistance in the Union. This is why the coalition governments in the countries with Union participation prevented a majority.
Even if the state chamber had voted in favor of the limit, this would not have been binding on the federal government - so far there is no majority for it. Federal Transport Minister Andreas Scheuer, for example, is against a general speed limit, and his party, the CSU, has launched a campaign against it.
The SPD, on the other hand, has long had a party congress resolution for a speed limit. Even the ADAC, which had long rejected it, had recently opened up to a debate about it and proposed new studies. The Greens had tried last year to get a majority in the Bundestag for a speed limit, but they hadn't gotten there.
At the same time, the Federal Council on Friday approved in principle a reform of the Road Traffic Act (StVO) presented by Minister Scheuer, which should make cycling in cities safer and more attractive. However, there have been a number of changes. Among other things, specific minimum distances are provided when overtaking cyclists. Motorists should face higher fines if they park in the second row or on footpaths and bike paths.