French speed limits

Published in Caravan Guard News, Caravanning Top Tips on   - 14 Comments

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  1. Andrew Meiklejohn says:

    Sorry have I misinterpreted your speed restrictions. Solo Motorhomes over 3.5 tonnes
    Section 11
    Reads 110 / 100 / 80 / 50
    At the end it reads weight restrictions in France over 3.5 tonnes
    90 / 90 80 / 50
    Trying to keep my licence clean and my wallet intact
    (A true Scot).

  2. Old Grey Beard says:

    As stated be someone earlier driving licenses are indeed important. It is worth investigating B, B+E entitlements. Also dates of license acquisition by our younger co-drivers. Often they can drive a small car light trailer combination on a B license without having to take the B+E test. If they are still in their two year probation period special conditions apply; in some EU countries the probation period is extended to three years. I often see old UK trailers in poor condition in EU countries; if trailers have brakes fitted they must be fully serviceable even if they are less than 750kg. Small trailers are exempt from having brakes, however if they do they must work. Do watch the ‘wet road rule’. This applies when there is visible tyre spray, caused, say, by water from fields long after rain stopped and the sun came out. Drive to arrive.

  3. James Trueman says:

    This says it was posted on 17/8/2010 but seems to include the July 2018 update. Is it current today? – as it truly is the most helpful and well presented explanation I’ve been able to find. Including from the ‘clubs’!

    • Liz @ Caravan Guard says:

      Thanks James. Yes we updated the speed limits which were introduced in July.

  4. Carol mason says:

    Is a 3500kg plated motorhome under or over when it comes to speed limits

    • Liz @ Caravan Guard says:

      Motorhome legislation relates to “up to 3500kg” – so 3501kg would be captured in any restriction. This often applies if you’ve had your base vehicle upgraded.

  5. john budge says:

    thanks Lucie,
    I received this email from the caravan club this morning it seems the every one has a deferent idea of what the law is in this case,

    Dear Mr Budge

    Thank you very much for your recent enquiry.

    I can confirm that our information is correct, I have confirmed it with the legal department of the Automobile Club de France (ACF) and a motorcycle policeman that I met in France earlier this year.

    If you are a solo motorhome (not towing a trailer/car/caravan etc..) and the weight of your motorhome is over 3.5t and under 12t then the following speed limits apply:

    Motorway: 110kmph
    Priority road/dual carriageways: 100kph
    Other roads: 80kph

    If you are towing anything behind your motorhome the following limits will apply:

    Motorway: 90kmph
    Priority road/dual carriageways: 90kph – but if the total weight is over 12t then it reduces to 80kph
    Other roads: 80kph – but if the total weight is over 12t the then it reduces to 60kph.

    Please do not hesitate to contact me if you require any further assistance.

    Best Regards

    Travel Service Information Officer
    The Caravan Club
    East Grinstead House
    East Grinstead
    West Sussex
    RH19 UA
    Direct Dial: +44 (0) 1342 336766

    • Lucie @ Caravan Guard says:

      Thanks John. Clearly there’s need for clarification on this topic. I’ll do some investigating. Thanks

      Caravan Guard

  6. john budge says:

    can you tell me which is correct my motorhome 5 tons you say I can drive on the French motorways at 110kph yet when I was stopped by the French police on the 6/8/2014 they said it’s only 90kph and 80kph on other roads

    • Lucie @ Caravan Guard says:

      Hi John,

      Thanks for getting in touch.
      I referred your query to our specialist leisure vehicle security adviser Tim Booth who tells us that weight restrictions do apply when caravanning in France.

      For caravans (and motrohomes) under 3.5 tonnes, the limit is 50kmh in built up areas, 90kmh on single carriageway /trunk roads, 110 kmh on dual carriageways and 130kmh motorways.

      For caravans (and mortorhomes) over 3.5 tonnes the limits are a little different. It’s 50kmh in built up areas, 80kmh on single carriageway /trunk roads, 90 kmh on dual carriageways and 90kmh on motorways.

      I hope this helps – I’ve added this information to the article in case anyone else had a similar query.
      Many thanks


  7. l.goodfellow says:

    The French system is a good one, One can find all the information in the car handbook and it assumes the car & caravan are fully laden.Any caravan is capable of de-stabilising the towing vehicle whether the car is large or small or the caravan is heavy or light.

  8. Kevin Lysaght says:

    Dear Sir.
    Apart from the legal requirements above for speed limits have you thought about the driving licence requirements for vehicle and trailer gross weights over 3.5 tons?

  9. Griff says:

    Very well presented, easy to understand considering the complexity of the subject. Thank you very much.

  10. Adam Clarke says:

    So, if I get this straight. If I have a heavy car for example, the volvo mentioned above, and a nice light 2 berth caravan. that only weights say, 900kg, the size of the caravan and it’s weight is basically ignored and the speed limit is based on the maximum PERMISSIBLE towing weight of the car limiting the top speed to 90kph yet I could also tow a caravan that weighs say 1500kg on a car weighing 1500kg (providing the car can tow it) even though the outfit would be normally unsafe at speeds up to 130kph?? hmmm a lot of wine was consumed at that meeting.

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