HISTORY REPEATS

Brett Pember, Thirroul, NSW

Remember the ‘Supercar Scare’ of the early ’70s? You know, when Harvey Grennan (press secretary to then-transport minister Milton Morris) initiated the ‘bullets on wheels’ 160mph car media storm, with journalist Evan Green as co-conspirator, resulting in the subsequent axing of the Bathurst Special cars from the Big Three?

Well, one of the arguments was that these cars were too powerful for the sub-standard roads of the day, plus they had (relatively) poor suspension and brakes, and zero safety aids beyond seat belts (another Morris initiative, apparently).

The uproar from the ‘Scrubyesque’ element of society was real and loud and succeeded.

Fast-forward to 2017. We have a veritable feast of 250-400kW cars on sale, many of which are relatively affordable. Yeah, they’re in a different dimension safety-wise (both active and passive), yet all would make even the best 1970s ‘Supercar’ look like a VW Beetle in terms of performance (hell, even a Golf GTI would!). But the road network is largely unchanged, especially in rural areas.

Now, I love a fast car as much or more than the next person, but I can’t help but wonder regarding the performance of these cars and the lack of public objection to them: Where did everybody go?