After Volvo announced this in 2019 and implemented a 180 km/h speed cap on new cars last year, it’s now Renault’s turn to set a speed limit on its cars. The French carmaker has declared that Renault and Dacia models will not exceed 180 km/h. The announcement was part of the Renault Group’s CSR policy roadmap and the role it will play within the Renaulution strategy, delivered at the company’s AGM last Friday.

The overall goal here, as with Volvo, is to help reduce the number of road accidents. Renault says that in Europe, the number of road fatalities reached 23,000 in 2019, and the top causes were excessive or inappropriate speed (30%), driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol (25%) and lack of concentration (20%).

Renault’s response is based on two key aspects: preventing accidents and assisting emergency services. The preventive safety programme operates in three areas: Detect, Guide and Act.

For Detect, a ‘Safety Score’ will analyse driving data using sensors located on the vehicle to encourage safer driving. For Guide, a ‘Safety Coach’ will process road and traffic data to inform drivers of potential risks on their route and will give real-time warnings on danger-prone areas.

Lastly Act, which will have a fail-safe mechanism that triggers automatically in the event of a clear and present danger. Examples of the latter given are a far too dangerous turn, loss of steering wheel control for a prolonged period and drowsiness. The ‘Safe Guardian’ will then slow the vehicle down, returning it to a “safe driving mode”.

Renault says that as of 2022, the Megane-E – previewed by the Megane eVision concept from October 2020 – will come equipped with an automatic speed limit adjuster, set by default. “The vehicle’s top speed will also be capped at 180km/h. The speed will also be capped on Renault and Dacia models, and will not exceed 180km/h,” Renault says.

Now, Renault is also known for its Renault Sport hot hatches like the Megane RS and Clio RS. Will there be a special dispensation for these performance models for say, track days? Then again, there’s plenty of fun that can be had without going past 180 km/h, and not every track is a high-speed Formula 1 circuit like Sepang. Note that only Renault and Dacia were mentioned, but not the group’s Alpine sports car brand. Renault’s F1 team has been rebranded to Alpine.

What do you think of this move? Do we really need to go so fast on the road? Share with us your thoughts, but before that, here’s Volvo’s rationale and our take on the issue.