Porsche Pack Pinched, Is One Press?

Image: bluefish-ds/shutterstockTen Porsche drivers with leaden feet were stopped for doubling the speed limit in Gilpin County, Colorado, and one may have been a press-fleet car.

Or at least, had manufacturer tags.

According to a police officer quoted in The Denver Post, one of the vehicles stopped was being used as a pace car.

The last vehicle in line appears to be shod with the license plates usually used by Porsche to denote that the car belongs to the manufacturer.

Just because the car has manufacturer tags it doesn’t mean a journalist was driving. Could’ve been a Porsche employee, of course, too. And neither “journalist gets a ticket” nor “OEM employee gets a citation” is much of a story. More like an occupational hazard. This, I know from experience.

Just this weekend a Chicago speed camera flashed me.

Even the 80 in a 40, while eye-popping, isn’t necessarily that big a deal – depending on the context. In a residential zone, yes, on a rural two-lane, not so much.

Really, this is only worth a story because the picture is kinda funny. I’m not downplaying the potential seriousness of the violations – again, context matters – but when was the last time you saw a trooper writing up 10 tickets at once? All for vehicles of the same make?

To be clear, if one looks only at the speed above the limit, the citations are no laughing matter, as Colorado law says that 25 mph or more over the limit is a Class B misdemeanor traffic offense. Fines can be as low as $15 or as high as $100.

Furthermore: “Misdemeanor traffic offenses in Colorado are separated into Class 1 misdemeanor traffic offenses and Class 2 misdemeanor traffic offenses.  Persons convicted of a Class 1 misdemeanor traffic offense are subject to a minimum sentence of 10 days in jail or a $300 fine, or both, and a maximum sentence of one year in jail or a $1,000 fine, or both.  Persons convicted of a Class 2 misdemeanor traffic offense are subject to a minimum sentence of 10 days in jail or a $150 fine, or both, and a maximum sentence of 90 days in jail or a $300 fine, or both.”

As repeatedly noted, though, context matters. The Twitter picture shows that the plethora of Porsches was stopped on a two-lane road with nothing around but grassland and rocky hills. While we’d never encourage driving recklessly or routinely driving at excessive speeds, common sense suggests that doing double the limit in this kind of area doesn’t carry the same risk as doubling it up near residences and business.

On the other hand, it’s possible the picture might not show residences and the like that are just out of frame, and the tweet does say “80+” in terms of mph. It could very well be that our scofflaws weren’t driving safely but in a spirited manner that just happens to be well above the limit, the way auto journalists sometimes do (and presumably, test drivers for the OEMs do, too). It could also be that while those speeds look low-risk on that road, they really aren’t.

Let’s hope our Porsche drivers drive more smartly and the cops showed leniency if appropriate. I’ll save my rant for how all speed limits aren’t created equal for another time.

H/t to reader Rudy!

[Image: bluefish_ds/Shutterstock.com]

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