14 cars that are slower than the Flying Scotsman

The legendary steam locomotive, the Flying Scotsman, is making its official return to the tracks today after a £4.2 million refurbishment. The engine retired from service in 1963 and has undergone a decade-long refit, ready for going on display at the National Railway Museum in York. It departed from London’s Kings Cross at 7.40am today and is set to make a non-stop journey to York.

When it entered service in 1923, the engine was famous for being the first train to have a top speed of 100mph. It got us thinking – which modern cars are slower than the Flying Scotsman? It’s surprising how many can’t reach 100mph…

Citroen C1 1.0

Max speed: 98mph

We’ll start with the more obvious stuff – there are some surprises to come! The Citroen C1 city car is only capable of 98mph…

Peugeot 108 1.0, Toyota Aygo 1.0

Max speed: 99mph

Interestingly, the Peugeot 108 and Toyota Aygo, which use the same platform and engine as the C1, are capable of an extra 1mph. If speed is important, that should whittle down your choice between the three.

Ford Fiesta 1.25 60

Ford Fiesta 1.25 60

Max speed: 94mph

Britain’s favourite car, the Ford Fiesta, is only capable of 94mph if you buy it with the 60hp 1.25-litre engine. We know, you can only legally do 70mph in the UK, but still…

Renault Twizy

Max speed: 50mph

Ah, the Renault Twizy. The door-less (as standard) electric car tops out at 50mph. That’s half that of the Flying Scotsman. If you want to get to Edinburgh quickly, just get the train.

Renault Twingo 1.0 SCE

Max speed: 94mph

While we’re on the subject of Renaults, the Twingo can only reach 94mph in 70hp 1.0-litre SCE guise. The rear-engine, rear-wheel-drive layout sounds like fun, but don’t expect Porsche 911 performance.

Smart ForTwo 1.0 71hp

Smart ForTwo 1.0 71hp

Max speed: 94mph

Of course, the Twingo platform-sharing Smart ForTwo also maxes out at 94mph. Not so smart if you want to race a train. Something we all do on a regular basis.

Kia Picanto 1.0

Max speed: 96mph

The affordable Kia Picanto is nudging closer to being capable of 100mph. We reckon with a downhill stretch you might manage it…

Hyundai i10 1.0

Max speed: 96mph

Fellow Korean budget buy, the Hyundai i10 is also capable of 96mph. If your nan has a few points on her licence, it might be worth avoiding the i10…

Volkswagen Up, SEAT Mii and Skoda Citigo 1.0 60hp

Volkswagen Up, SEAT Mii and Skoda Citigo 1.0 60hp

Max speed: 99mph

The Volkswagen Group city car trio rightly remain popular. They may be sprightly around town, but don’t expect to hurl them up the M1 at the rate of the Flying Scotsman.

Land Rover Defender

Max speed: 90mph

The Defender is now out of production, but we’ll include it here anyway. The agricultural workhorse and/or status symbol is capable of 90mph flat out. If you’re feeling brave.

Nissan LEAF

Max speed: 87mph

Electric cars are generally made for efficiency rather than speed (don’t mention Tesla), so it’s no surprise that the Nissan LEAF tops out at 87mph. Plenty enough for British motorways.


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