German motorway speed limit

February 19, 2016
Germany proposed Autobahn

Self-Drive Motoring holidays in Germany. Tips on driving abroad in Germany. Motoring rules and regulations in Germany. German motoring laws.

Make sure you Drive Alive! Drive on the right!

  • Be especially careful when setting off from service stations or restaurants on the left side of the road.
  • Take care when overtaking - allow more space between you and the car in front so you can see further down the road ahead.
  • Germany has strict drink driving laws, only allowing 0.5 milligrams of alcohol per millilitre of blood - stricter than the UK where the limit is 0.8.
  • Seat belts front and rear are obligatory everywhere.
  • Speed limits, shown below, are implemented rigorously. Radar traps are frequent in Germany, and heavy on-the-spot fines can be levied. The speed limit in towns and cities is 50 km/h - approximately 30 mph - unless indicated otherwise. The start of the limit is when you pass the town name sign on entering the town and the end of the limit is the same town name sign with a red line across the town name. There may not be a speed limit sign.
  • Remember - Speeding and other traffic offences are subject to on-the-spot fines.
  • When approaching a roundabout give way to traffic already on the roundabout, on your left, unless signed otherwise.
  • There are no tolls to pay on German Autobahns.
  • Low Emission Zones - don't get caught out - many German cities require you to display a sticker confirming your vehicle meets environmental requirements.

Although the autobahns in Germany are not subject to an overall speed limit (the blue speed limit signs, usually showing 130, are suggested maximum speeds), many stretches of autobahn are covered by signed speed limits, which are mostly closely observed by the Germans. But beware; even on unrestricted autobahns you can get a ticket for driving too fast in the prevailing conditions (heavy traffic, bad weather etc).

A full UK driving licence is required. Minimum age for driving in Germany is 18. As in the UK, seat belts should be worn front and rear. Below are motoring regulations relating to Germany.

More and more towns are adopting the priority to traffic coming from the right in the towns. If there is no yellow diamond at a road junction, you MUST give way to traffic from the right, even if you are on the major road. As it used to do in France years ago this is causing accidents, especially in the rain. It is used as a way to slow traffic down in built up areas.

Country Motorway Open Road Town Alcohol mg/ml
Germany none unless shown 100 km/h 50 km/h 0.5

Bulb replacement set is advised, but not compulsory.

Race to 350 km/h on a motorway in Germany
Race to 350 km/h on a motorway in Germany
VW GOLF 7 R Onboard Acceleration German NO SPEED Limit
VW GOLF 7 R Onboard Acceleration German NO SPEED Limit ...
Maximum 120 km/h speed limit in a German motorway
Maximum 120 km/h speed limit in a German motorway
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