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The streets of Monaco: the clocks go differently in the Principality

Tourism Association Monaco
The streets of Monaco
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F ormel veteran Niki Lauda described the Monaco racetrack Years and years like this: “It's like flying a helicopter in your own living room.” There shouldn't be a car race between the narrow canyons of the noble dwarf state. But every year one Bernie Ecclestone and his huge entourage teaches a better one. No route is as exciting as this one. The Grand Prix is ​​loud, crazy, chic and somehow out of place right here.

Anyone who has the opportunity to drive their own car on the slowest of all Formula 1 tracks will be drawn to the words by Niki Lauda not seriously doubt it. It is unimaginable how around 20 cars can drive accident-free on the narrow street circuit at a racing speed of up to 270 km /h.

Dense everyday traffic

The vehicles can travel from such speeds in everyday road traffic Only dream Monaco. The luxury cars and sports cars press their way close together and bumper to bumper to bodybuilding studios, beauty salons, supermarkets and restaurants. For short journeys you should allow more than half an hour in the morning or in the late afternoon. Because there are hardly any parking spaces and the multi-storey car parks under the skyscrapers are mostly bursting at the seams, many are out and about with armed city speedsters. In addition, the Principality of Monaco relies on vehicles such as the new Smart Fortwo Elektro. From 2012, every private person can buy the Stromer.

In addition to the yachts in the ports of Monaco, luxury vehicles from Porsche, Bentley, Jaguar, Mercedes, Aston Martin and Maserati still dominate the streets. But even these luxury cars are only a means to an end in Mediterranean Manhattan. When a rich Monegasse is asked about his favorite status symbol, he simply points to his 30-meter yacht in the harbor. If you only commute back and forth over a few square kilometers anyway, a suitably equipped Smart will often do it for you. Around 870 of them bustle through Monaco. In purely mathematical terms, every 36th Monegasse is a smart driver. You won't find it anywhere else. The whisper-quiet Stromer will be added in two years. Monaco is one of the playgrounds on which the second generation of the electric smart can let off steam from spring 2010. The car maker signed an agreement with the principality. Ten Smart Fortwo Electric Drive are leased to companies and publicCity-state institutions assigned.

Refueling electric cars for free in Monaco

“We had electric car fleets as early as the 1990s, but then there were simply no more new cars on the market . Now Monaco wants to become the spearhead of clean mobility, ”says Bernard Fautrier, former minister in the Principality and today Vice-President of the Foundation of Prince Albert II of Monaco, which is committed to renewable energies, among other things. 272 electric cars and 210 hybrid vehicles are already registered in Monaco. The infrastructure also plays a role: 300 charging stations are available in multi-storey car parks, and electricity is charged for free. The Principality subsidizes the purchase of an electric car with a third of the new price - a maximum of 9,000 euros - and Stromer are tax-exempt.

From a distance, Monaco seems to float between water and sky like a fairy tale. The Grimaldi Palace proudly sits enthroned on the rugged rock. At the foot of the mighty rock, the cobalt blue, mirror-smooth Mediterranean sparkles. In the background, an imposing alpine chain frames the small principality. Monaco has been a playground for the rich and beautiful for more than a hundred years. With its lavish beauty, the Monegasque state casts a spell over everyone: pretty villas and luxurious palaces, pompous Belle Epoque hotels with artfully designed facades, gables and playful turrets, the opera house and the world-famous casino with its baroque arches show that they are here Style and elegance at home.

Money doesn't matter

And money doesn't matter. You just have it - and you like to show it off. Especially with the cars. The most expensive are in front of the casino evening after evening. A couple of red Ferraris, a couple of more plainly painted Aston Martin and a Bugatti. Mercedes S-Class, Porsche 911 or Maserati Quattroporte are no longer noticed here anyway. On the other hand, the density of the sometimes very old models from Rolls-Royce and Bentley seems almost frightening. Most of the vehicles are in top condition and it is not uncommon for a limousine to have a chauffeur behind the wheel.

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