Authorities in London introduce crackdown on noisy ‘supercars’ in and around the exclusive district of Knightsbridge. Residents say they’re being driven to distraction by late-night revving engines and racing by the cars, many of whose drivers come from the Gulf States.
LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM (JULY 31, 2015) (REUTERS) – A London council has announced a crackdown on noisy supercars in and around the exclusive district of Knightsbridge.
Residents say they are being driven to distraction by late-night revving engines and racing of cars, many of whose drivers come from the Gulf States, from where they ship in Ferraris, Lamborghinis and Bugattis.
Panda Morgan Thomas has lived in the area with her daughter Alexander from more than twenty years.
“It starts at about four o clock in the afternoon and goes on til roughly four o clock in the morning. So obviously people who aren’t well or want a fairly quiet time are disturbed. Some people get really very distraught by it, particularly some of the elderly who perhaps live in a basement and the cars are going by at their ceiling level,” she said.
The probelm has now reached a point where the local council says it is planning to act.
It has proposed the introduction of a special order on the streets around the Harrods department store that would outlaw revving of engines, speeding, rapid acceleration, driving in convoy, or playing loud music, among other anti-social activities.
Explaining the reasons behind the action by the authorities, the leader of Kensington and Chelsea council Nick Paget-Brown said: “These are very wealthy people, particularly from the Gulf States but possibly also from the UK and beyond, who drive these sports cars, these very very upmarket models which have the facility to switch into sports mode which means they can make an incredible amount of noise, even when they are stationery, just by revving the engine and we know that people are racing the cars, driving in convoy, very often there’s loud music attached. And generally it’s creating an enormous disturbance in the highly populated and highly residential streets.”
Meanwhile, on Sloane Street on Friday (July 31) night, 25-year-old engineer Ali Asad and his friends from Kuwait were planning their evening driving in convoy round the area.
Asad had brought over his KTM X-Bow R, worth around 70,000 GBP, while his friends were driving a white Lamborghini with Kuwaiti plates.
Asad said the group were spending a few weeks in London before heading off to Cannes in the south of France.
Their cars could not be described as quiet, but he insisted they were respectful of residents and just a few bad apples gave them a bad name.
“The most important thing is when people don’t treat you as if you have good intentions, and they portray you as if you are the annoying person and making noise. At the end of the day they are unfair and judge as if we are the same. They don’t see that there are some individuals who are making a bad name for us,” he told Reuters, as his car hummed in the background.
Iraqi kick boxing champion Riyadh al-Azzawi is a well-known face on the streets around Harrods and is happy to pose for photos with fans and his golden Ferrari worth around 250,000 GBP.
He says he is glad the council has taken action and does not drive his vehicle in a way that annoys people.
“I absolutely agree with that decision because this is how it should be. At least we can stop these people from doing all of that because that ruins people’s image. People come to drive because we enjoy, we love cars, to drive around, people taking pictures – it’s something nice, you know,” he said.
The council’s order is expected to be introduced in September, subject to public consultation.