The laws around speeding fines just got a whole lot harsher. Here are 10 crazy examples of when drivers decided to ignore the law completely, resulting in big fines and serious punishments.
You may know that being caught speeding now carries a potentially much harsher punishment in the UK. As of the 24th of April, 2017, the Government can fine you 50 per cent more if you commit a serious offence ─ up to 150 per cent of your weekly wage.
The maximum fine is still the same £1,000 or £2,500 on a motorway, which means those with big salaries won’t see a difference, but those on lower incomes are going to be hit harder (new UK speeding laws explained here).
That is obviously a bad thing, given how much it costs to run a car in the UK, but then the argument is there would be nothing to pay if you obeyed the law like a good little motorist. Even when an empty motorway with no workers around requires you to stick at 50mph. For 20 miles.
There are, of course, levels of speeding. 32mph in a 30mph at 4am may see cops be a bit more lenient. But the following law-breakers were never going to walk away with a stern talking to, oh no.
In no particular order and with a little help from independent holiday lettings company HomeToGo, here are ten of the worst speeding offences from around the world.
Obviously kids, do not try to reach these speeds at home. Except on Gran Turismo, perhaps.
1) 197mph in a Toyota Supra
One of the most famous speeding offences was committed by tuning company Top Secret owner Kazuhiko “Smokey” Nagata, who lived up to his name when he got caught doing 197mph on the A1 in a 1,000hp, highly-modified Toyota Supra back in 1999. He subsequently left the country.
Punishment: One night in jail, £190 fine, driving ban of 28 days
2) 201mph in a Bentley Continental GT
Wanting to approach the 205mph top speed of a Bentley Continental GT, a driver was caught doing 202mph in Switzerland. We say caught, but it was the footage of him or her reaching that speed – recorded on his mobile phone – that lead to prosecution. Nobody believed he was simply a passenger.
Punishment: £1,620 fine, six months in jail
3) 194mph in a Porsche Carrera
This particular speeder got rather lucky in the speed to punishment ratio department. Riccardo Ruggiero, then managing director of Telecom Italian, was caught doing 193mph on the A26 at Carpignano Sesia, Italy, in his Porsche 911 Carrera. His excuse of ‘testing the car’ fell on deaf ears.
Punishment: 10 penalty points (maximum is 20), €357 fine
4) 193mph in an Audi RS4
The Audi RS cars are known to be somewhat spritely, especially if you start tuning them. No wonder, then, a modified RS4 was able to reach a hugely dangerous 193mph in Niort, France, landing the unnamed driver in a world of trouble. The lack of a driving licence certainly did little to help the case.
Punishment: One year in jail
5) 192mph in a Nissan GT-R
Another speeder who thought it was a good idea to film his speed-based escapades, this time it was a 48-year-old from Northampton who took his Nissan GT-R supercar up to 192mph. His reward was one of the harshest penalties on the list – a whole lot of jail action.
Punishment: 10-year driving ban, 28 months jail time
6) 186mph in a Porsche Panamera Turbo
Another Porsche, another speeding fine. This time it was a wannabe drag racer who hit 186mph in Warsaw, Poland, and then decided to upload his ‘achievement’ on YouTube, earning himself more than half a million views in the process. No doubt a few of those were related to law enforcement.
Punishment: Driving licence taken away, £1,015 fine
7) 185mph in a Porsche 911 Carrera
Despite all the hindsight, a 36-year-old from Spain took his Porsche 911 Carrera all the way up to 185mph in March, 2017. That is 2.5 times the maximum limit, a fact he tried to justify when he said he had only wanted to try out his car. Authorities ignored his excuse.
Punishment: Driving licence ban of one year, £3,125 fine
8) 180mph on a Kawasaki Ninja ZX-9R
Jeez, does everyone film their moment of speeding? A motorcyclist practically handed himself in when he uploaded a video of him or her on a Kawasaki Ninja ZX-9R reaching 180mph in a 50mph zone in the Netherlands. We say ‘practically’ because, in this case, police never caught them.
9) 150mph in a Audi A3
We had no idea a standard Audi A3 could be this fast, yet a 20-year-old managed to hit 150mph in Berlin, Germany. The fact he did so in a 40mph zone only got the unnamed driver into more trouble, but not as much as you would expect.
Punishment: £590 fine, four penalty points (eight maximum)
10) 242mph in a Koenigsegg CCR
Why is this at the bottom of the list? Because it is difficult to verify if this speeding story ever took place, even though Clarkson has talked about it on Top Gear. So the story goes, an entrant of the 2003 Gumball 3000 was caught doing 242mph (the car’s top speed) in the state of Texas, America. The fine was said to be equally ludicrous.
Punishment: Allegedly a fine of US$650,000