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Old 01-08-2002, 05:25   #1 (permalink)
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LHD & RHD Vehicles?

My young fella asked me how come there is RHD & LHD cars and not all of one or the other?
I just said it's just a choice each country makes but it's got me thinking why it like this, sure would make it easier for everyone if all countries drive on the same side of the road.
Is there another reason or am I right?
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Old 01-08-2002, 16:54   #2 (permalink)
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As far as I know we're right hand drive because the mother country England is right hand drive, as are most of the "colonies". Even Canada used to be RHD but simple economics neighbouring USA meant that they eventually swapped over to LHD.

From what I have been lead to believe the far greater majority are LHD with RHD in the minority. Think we'll ever swap over? Unlikely given our close proximity to Japan...
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Old 01-08-2002, 17:24   #3 (permalink)
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A lot of tha Asian countries are RHD vehicles as well, such as Japan, Malaysia and Singapore. That's why you see Toyota Surfs and Nissan Silvia's on the road.

What side of the road do the Chinese drive on?

Because if it is a RHD car on the LH side of the road, give it 15-20 years, and the RHD cars will be in the majority again.....

Thing is, most countries allow LHD and RHD cars on the road. Europeans are all LHD cars, but the UK have RHD cars, and you have no problems putting a car on the ferry and driving them in the other countries. You can drive LHD cars in japan, and it is OK to drive RHD cars in the US. You can even register the wrong side cas in those countries.

In Australia, you cannot register a LHD car for use on the roads, unless it is older than 25 years and registered in Victoria. I am uncertain as to the laws, but I think it may be illegal to even drive a LHD car in Australia without some whopping sign on the rear.

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Old 01-08-2002, 22:09   #4 (permalink)
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Actually the laws on LHD cars differs greatly between the states, and like most other traffic regulations would be better if it was the same across the board.

I think it has only been recently that every state in Australia will now allow for registration of LHD under certain circumstances.

Here in WA we've had that option for about 10 years now and in that time they've gradually relaxed the age of the vehicles that can be registered. Now it's down so something like everything over 15 years old.

I've owned plenty of LHD drive cars and actually enjoy driving on that side and it is no more difficult than RHD, and there are no problems with it on our roads so I don't understand the need for the "CAUTION LEFT HAND DRIVE" signage that is required.

Only problem I've ever had is getting takeaway food at a drive-thru, you either have to yell over to the other side, or go through driving in reverse. However on the flip side, driving LHD saved me my drivers licence at a random breath test once...
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Old 01-08-2002, 22:17   #5 (permalink)
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roll

I was talking a friend in Europe (Scandanavian country) who remebers the night that they switched from RHD to LHD; what a fun night to have been out driving!!
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Old 01-08-2002, 22:32   #6 (permalink)
 
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i really believe this should be standardised! it would make importing cars into australia, and exporting them o/s so much simpler! you could just go to the states, buy a F150 lightening, ship it here, and drive it off the shit onto the road! well, almost...
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Old 01-08-2002, 23:47   #7 (permalink)
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Easier to move countries than to make that change.
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Old 01-09-2002, 01:34   #8 (permalink)
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Remember, the reason they keep the age restrictions on the LHD imports is to keep us all safe from cars that don't comply with our ADR's and safety standards, and to keep our local car industry going.

I mean if you could buy a new LHD Bullitt Mustang for the same price as a 6cyl Falcon Sedan what would you do?
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Old 01-09-2002, 01:39   #9 (permalink)
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my dad sometimes drives a 1957 chev bell air to special functions etc for his work and it's registered in qld. it has to have a sign stating it's a lefty though
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Old 01-09-2002, 03:18   #10 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by XYFalcon
Remember, the reason they keep the age restrictions on the LHD imports is to keep us all safe from cars that don't comply with our ADR's and safety standards, and to keep our local car industry going.

I mean if you could buy a new LHD Bullitt Mustang for the same price as a 6cyl Falcon Sedan what would you do?
ahhh, ADRs! another thing i don't exactly agree with... why can't we all have standardised design rules? i mean, we are lucky that all these foreign manufacturers actually engineer cars for australia, because in some cases the cost cannot be justified! i'm surprised some of them haven't told us to bugger off!
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