Report: Top Gear in dustup over alleged staged hovercraft scene [w/video]

Filed under: Etc., Videos, UK, Humor, TV/Movies

Top Gear Hovervan destroying a restaurant - video screencap

Top Gear walks a very narrow line between documentary, sitcom and reality television. And while some aspects of it are true, it shouldn’t be a huge shock that there are plenty of staged elements. Still, there seem to be elements of the British public that think everything shown on the telly is true, which makes the latest controversy over Top Gear‘s fakery seem rather silly to us.

The anger stems from the July 21 episode, which actually airs tonight on BBC America (spoiler alert from here out), where Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May attempt to convert a Ford Transit into a hovercraft. The resulting hovervan can work on the road, and can kind of work on the water, as demonstrated during an extended cruise on the River Avon.

This is where people are getting angry. In one scene, the trio pass a riverside restaurant and decided to stop in for a bite. Patrons sitting on the water’s edge are then mercilessly blown and splashed by the jet wash of the hovervan’s fans. Here’s the controversy – those “patrons” were apparently staged actors. Yes, Top Gear is in trouble with the British public because they used actors for a segment rather than ruining the days of unsuspecting people.

Video and images were released on Twitter by one of the actors, according to Britain’s The Mirror. A BBC spokesperson’s response to this latest uproar is pretty much what we were thinking as we watched the episode last weekend: “I think Top Gear viewers are intelligent enough not to have been taken in.” Clearly not all of them. Check out video of the stunt below.

Continue reading Top Gear in dustup over alleged staged hovercraft scene [w/video]

Top Gear in dustup over alleged staged hovercraft scene [w/video] originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 29 Jul 2013 13:29:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: Top Gear caught filming Best of British near Buckingham Palace

Filed under: Videos, Aston Martin, Bentley, Jaguar, Land Rover, Lotus, Mini, Rolls-Royce, UK, Celebrities, McLaren, TV/Movies

Top Gear readies Best of British special outside of Buckingham Palace
YouTuber and car-fan extraordinaire Shmee probably had very little trouble tracking down the Top Gear film crew recently, as the group was putting together an episode that could accurately be described as “excessive.” With its flag-waving (literally) Best of British theme, the TG guys gathered a jaw-dropping array of British cars, and parked them all right in front of Buckingham Palace to make extra sure that the point was driven home.

Top Gear hosts Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May were outfitted with a trio of Jaguar F-Types festooned with gigantic Union Jacks, with which to survey the landscape of British motoring glory. In the video below, you’ll see that this includes any number of Mini, Aston Martin, Lotus, McLaren, Land Rover, Bentley and Rolls-Royce models (just to name a few), as well as a healthy dose of weird stuff that most people would never guess at being built in the UK. The lawnmowers and military vehicles are especially cool.

Continue reading Top Gear caught filming Best of British near Buckingham Palace

Top Gear caught filming Best of British near Buckingham Palace originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 24 Jun 2013 14:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Official: Top Gear returns for Series 20 on June 30

Filed under: UK, Celebrities, TV/Movies

Top Gear UK

Good news, petrolheads: Top Gear is coming back for its 20th season, starting on June 30. Yes, we mean the original UK version of the hit motoring show. Time to get those DVRs fired up… hopefully that means it will air on BBC America in the States around the same time.

While we don’t have any specific indication as to what we might expect from Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May (plus The Stig, naturally), we’re certain that season 20 will include plenty of beautiful camera work, exotic locations, the fastest cars in the world, the slowest cars in the world, celebrity guests and, of course, a handful of so-called challenges that pit the hosts and their ingenuity against one another.

Want more? Satiate your never-ending Top Gear fix by scrolling through a dozen teaser images showing scenes from the upcoming show at this link.

Top Gear returns for Series 20 on June 30 originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 21 Jun 2013 08:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Top Gear USA host Rutledge Wood picks up a Buick Roadmaster wagon

Filed under: Car Buying, Wagon, Buick, Celebrities

rutledge wood's buick roadmaster

Rutledge Wood, part of the Top Gear trio here in the States that went out to find the best car from GM’s recent past, (wisely) picked a Buick Roadmaster as his steed. He then used the wagon to wind up victorious over the choices of his co-hosts. Now, Rutledge has shown that he truly cares about the LT1-powered five-door, as he just purchased a 1996 example to put in his own driveway.

Regardless of your stance on the U.S.-version of Top Gear, you have to admire a man who understands the timeless appeal of a good station wagon. Cadillac CTS-V Sport Wagon owners should look upon the Buick Roadmaster with a fond gaze, because the Roadmaster is part of your hot-rod wagon’s DNA.

This may not be the 2011 Buick Roadmaster that Rutledge was hoping for, but we’re pretty sure he’s still smitten with his new ride.

Top Gear USA host Rutledge Wood picks up a Buick Roadmaster wagon originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 18 May 2011 11:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Charlotte NASCAR Nationwide race renamed Top Gear 300

Filed under: Motorsports, Etc., Marketing/Advertising, Celebrities

Top Gear USA

In an effort to gain some viewership, Top Gear America has teamed up with NASCAR to rename the May 28 Nationwide Series race at Charlotte Motor Speedway the Top Gear 300. To tease season two of the American spinoff of the so-far superior English car show, clips from Top Gear America will be broadcast during the race.

Top Gear America clips will also air on Charlotte Motor Speedway’s 200-foot high-definition jumbotron, the biggest high-def TV in the world. That’s gonna make Rutledge’s head look extra big, no? (Just kidding, Mr. Wood, your head’s just fine.)

Details are scant as to what TGUSA paid for all this, but we can’t imagine it came cheap. The green flag waves on the Top Gear 300 at 2:30 EST on May 28. Only time will tell if this move ends up boosting TGUSA’s ratings for season two.

[Source: UPI.com]

Charlotte NASCAR Nationwide race renamed Top Gear 300 originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 17 Mar 2011 18:20:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Video: Top Gear Poland takes women to mall for night of shopping

Filed under: Etc., Videos

Top Gear Poland

Top Gear Poland – Click above to watch for video after the jump

Of the many criticisms leveled at the U.S. interpretation of Top Gear, perhaps the most stinging is that the show relies on re-baked ideas lifted wholesale from the grand-pappy of all motoring shows, Top Gear UK. That may be true, but it’s also a trick that the producers of the show’s various ethnicities have been employing for years. What’s more, it doesn’t look like it will stop any time soon.

A video of Top Gear Poland‘s latest antics has leaked to the interwebs, and fans of the OG TG will likely recognize the premise.

The show’s presenters have been unleashed on an unsuspecting shopping mall in the middle of the night, and the video shows a Peugeot 107, a Chevrolet Spark, a Smart ForTwo and a Toyota iQ zooming around with a Jaguar XKR. One of these things is most certainly not like the other ones.

We’re not entirely sure what the premise behind the clip is, considering that the video lacks any of the tire-squealing glory of the infamous Chevrolet Corvette vs. Ford Fiesta battle helmed by Jeremy Clarkson. Still, we’ve always wanted to wheel around in the display vehicles in the mall, so the clip at least lets us live out that fantasy. Hit the jump to check it for yourself.

[Source: MotoFilm]

Continue reading Video: Top Gear Poland takes women to mall for night of shopping

Video: Top Gear Poland takes women to mall for night of shopping originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 09 Mar 2011 16:58:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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What would a 2011 Buick Roadmaster look like? Top Gear USA takes a crack at it

Filed under: Classics, Wagon, Buick, GM, Design/Style

2011 Buick Roadmaster rendering

2011 Buick Roadmaster renderings from Top Gear USA – Click above for high-res image gallery

General Motors has made some excellent cars over the course of its hundred-plus years of existence. As we’re all painfully aware, though, it’s also produced some horribly bad cars. It’s debatable as to when GM’s fortunes really turned south, but many critics point to the early 1970s, when a series of poor decisions led to the automaker’s eventual near demise in 2009.

And so it’s fitting that, when tasked with choosing cars from GM’s often illustrious, often horrendous lifetime, the crew from Top Gear USA chose three models built between the early ’70s and the late ’90s as examples of what the modern-day GM should consider reviving: a 1971 Oldsmobile Cutlass, a mid-’80s Pontiac Fiero and a late-’90s Buick Roadmaster wagon. Interestingly enough, only one of those brands is still in existence…

After putting the three machines through a battery of tests, a clear winner was crowned, and it’s probably not the vehicle you were expecting. The car that General Motors should reintroduce: the Buick Roadmaster station wagon. Here at this link you’ll find the complete episode, where you can see what led up to the surprising conclusion (hint: it involved steep inclines, eggs and a few thousand gallons of water – challenges that should be familiar to Top Gear UK followers).

What we’re most interested in, though, is the show’s rendering of what a 2011 Buick Roadmaster might look like. We like the basics – a big pushrod V8 engine up front, six-speed manual transmission, rear-wheel drive, a cavernous interior with seating for you and your seven closest friends and their stuff, and, of course, portholes and Buick’s signature ‘sweep-spear’ profile design language. Okay, maybe we can do without the vinyl wood siding… but maybe not. See for yourself in our image gallery below.

Gallery: 2011 Buick Roadmaster rendering from Top Gear USA

2011 Buick Roadmaster rendering from Top Gear USA2011 Buick Roadmaster rendering from Top Gear USA

[Source: Top Gear USA]

What would a 2011 Buick Roadmaster look like? Top Gear USA takes a crack at it originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 21 Dec 2010 13:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Top Gear US hosts sit down with Jay Leno tonight

Filed under: Etc., Celebrities

Top GearThe crew from Top Gear US are jumping over to the set of another certified car nut’s show. Jay Leno will play host to Tanner Foust, Rutledge Wood and Adam Ferrara tonight at 11:35 pm on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. While cars will no doubt be a central point of the discussion, we’re curious to see what Jay has to say about the show. Last time he spoke about it, Leno predicted it would suck.

Top Gear US hosts sit down with Jay Leno tonight originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 16 Dec 2010 17:15:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Autoblog Podcast #205: LA Recap, Top Gear USA and Chevy Zetas

Filed under: LA Auto Show, Podcasts, Etc., Chevrolet, Ford, GM, Lincoln

Click above for the Autoblog Podcast in iTunes, RSS or listen now!

Episode #205 of the Autoblog Podcast features the monthly appearance of Alex Nunez. Chris, Dan and Alex recap the 2010 Los Angeles Auto Show, Top Gear USA’s first episode, the return of the Holden Commodore as a Chevrolet, and it all wraps up with your questions and feedback at the hour and a half mark. Thanks for listening!

Autoblog Podcast #205: LA Recap, Top Gear USA, and Chevy Zetas

In the Autoblog Garage:

Lincoln MKS Ecoboost
2011 Mustang GT

News Topics:

  • LA Auto Show recap
  • G8 to return as a Chevy
  • Top Gear USA airs its first episode

Hosts:
Dan Roth, Chris Shunk, Alex Nunez
Runtime: 1:31:35


Get the podcast:
[iTunes] Subscribe to the Autoblog Podcast in iTunes
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[MP3] Download the MP3 directly

Feedback:

Email: Podcast at Autoblog dot com
Voicemail: 734-288-8POD (734-288-8763)

Review the show in iTunes and take our survey

Autoblog Podcast #205: LA Recap, Top Gear USA and Chevy Zetas originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 23 Nov 2010 16:15:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Review: Top Gear USA – the first episode [w/poll]

Filed under: Etc., Videos, Celebrities

Not The Original, But Not Bad, Either

Adam Ferrara, Tanner Foust, Rutledge Wood

The logo. The exotic car-filled studio. The engine block coffee table. The Stig. The Star in a Reasonably Priced Car. It all seemed so familiar. The inaugural episode of Top Gear USA aired Sunday night at 10pm EST/9C on the History Channel with a lot of what made the original British show an international hit, but without those three dynamic blokes that have made the UK version so great. Or the amazing producers who put that show together each week. Instead, we get new producers, a new set, and new promise in hosts Tanner Foust, Adam Ferrara and Rutledge Wood.

The first episode of Top Gear USA started off with a bang by transitioning from an original Shelby Cobra to the best modern interpretation of the big engine on wheels: the Dodge Viper. The American-made missile was driven by Tanner Foust who was charged with outrunning a Cobra attack helicopter. The Viper was fitted with a missile detection simulator that showed when the supercar was being missile-locked and “hit” by the chopper. To win this competition, Foust and his navigator/co-host Rutledge Wood needed to blast across town and back before being hit by the chopper three times. We won’t tell you how it ends, but we will say this first stunt showed that while the camera work and editing isn’t yet up to Top Gear UK levels of excellence, the content is still engaging and fun to watch.

Take our poll below, then follow the jump to continue reading…

View Poll

Continue reading Review: Top Gear USA – the first episode [w/poll]

Review: Top Gear USA – the first episode [w/poll] originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 22 Nov 2010 12:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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