German court: SUV means bigger traffic ticket

SUVs tend to cost more than sedans. But does the relation hold for traffic-law violations?

Perhaps in Germany.

A court in Frankfurt, according to Autoblog, has ruled that a driver who ran a red light should pay more than the usual fine because he was driving a sport utility vehicle. The verdict dated June 3 could set a precedent.

In its ruling, published late last month, the court ordered the driver to pay €350 ($365) — almost twice the regular fine of about $200 — for running a red light. It also imposed a one-month driving ban.

The court argued that the shape of the SUV, with its high, boxlike hood, meant the driving infraction posed a greater risk to pedestrians than if the defendant had driven a smaller car.

The verdict, which also took into account the defendant’s previous driving convictions, can be appealed.

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