Top Bear!

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Re: Top Gear!

Postby MotorToad » Wed Jun 30, 2010 7:30 pm UTC

The new RPC looks like it'll be a ton of fun. The others certainly never seemed so eager to swap ends. There were a couple of epic demonstrations of textbook pendulum effect. The first-day board filling bit was way short of the Laceti's though. More from lame celebrities than lack of effort on their part, so far as I can tell (Manny not included). I'm excited to see how The Stig and Jeremy get around in this one. Jeremy's time in the Laceti was impressive given he had an extra 1.67 people in an underpowered car.

I've never wanted a Robin before this. That thing takes a flip better than anything I've seen before. (Good thing, too!)
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby Various Varieties » Wed Jun 30, 2010 7:35 pm UTC

MotorToad wrote:I've never wanted a Robin before this. That thing takes a flip better than anything I've seen before. (Good thing, too!)

"As long as you live somewhere wi' a straight line t'pit." :mrgreen:

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Re: Top Gear!

Postby frezik » Wed Jun 30, 2010 9:59 pm UTC

They have licensing issues with productions outside of England. The BBC has a blanket license to use almost any music they want in their programs, but not outside of the UK. So they either have to license the tracks individually, put in new music, or cut that scene altogether.

Since Top Gear uses a lot of very cinematic music, they undo a lot of hard work by making cuts.
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby zurman » Thu Jul 01, 2010 12:51 pm UTC

Like the theme of the show says "you dont need to love cars".
I love this show!

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Re: Top Gear!

Postby lolaslinks » Thu Jul 01, 2010 11:17 pm UTC

Awesome show, just keeps delivering!

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Re: Top Gear!

Postby You, sir, name? » Sat Jul 03, 2010 9:04 am UTC

zurman wrote:Like the theme of the show says "you dont need to love cars".
I love this show!


I honestly don't care much about cars, but that's never kept me from enjoying top gear.
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby the_bandersnatch » Thu Jul 22, 2010 8:43 am UTC

The latest episode where they had to build motorhomes was the funniest one in a long time, the missus and I ended up in fits of giggles as Jeremy tried to drive his tower block around without it falling over, and as Hammond tried unsuccessfully to stop his from blowing away in a strong wind (or from burning down). Or with James May getting stuck upside down in his escape tunnel. I know it's mostly scripted but it's still incredibly funny!
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby Plasma Man » Thu Jul 22, 2010 8:52 am UTC

I thought they'd been doing quite well at avoiding the predictable scripts this series, until the motorhomes one. It started out well, but then was really predictable from Richard's fire onwards.
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby frezik » Thu Jul 22, 2010 5:25 pm UTC

I loved the last episode. Even if it was predictable, it was still some good ol' fashioned cocking about.

On the convertible test: whenever cars are tested that have been converted to convertible form from an original hardtop, they bring up the point that there's two ways to do it:

1) Just cut off the top, which makes the chassis all floppy
2) Add reinforcement through the floor, which adds weight

The best convertibles are designed from the start as convertibles, like the Miata.

But here's the thing: driving around town, a cabriolet version of either a 911 or an Audi R8 are going to need particularly stiff chassis, even if you're driving them vigorously. The limits of the road, even when going a little outside the legal bounds, will kick in before the limits of the chassis will hit.

If you're going to a track day, then a roll cage is a good idea anyway, if not outright required by the organizers (even for hardtops). In addition to safety, the roll cage will solve the stiffness problem on its own.

So really, what's the downside in the convertible versions?
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby dubsola » Fri Jul 23, 2010 12:43 pm UTC

I don't know.

In other news, this week's Star in a Reasonably Priced Car is... dun dun dun - Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz.
Back in 2002 when we were planning New TopGear, we used to reflect on the newly minted idea of a star in a Reasonably Priced Car and cackle quietly to ourselves. ‘Tom Cruise!’ we would smirk. ‘Tom Cruise in a crappy Korean hatchback!’ That was the gag: massive A-list celebrities finding themselves shoehorned into the kind of car they’d normally never be seen dead in. The whole thing was deliberately preposterous. And so, frankly, was our dream of getting the world’s biggest movie actor into an affordable mid-range car.

Except that this week, after just 15 series, somehow it has come to pass. This week’s star in the Reasonably Priced Car genuinely is Tom Cruise. As if that wasn’t ludicrous enough, he’s brought a colleague with him. Her name is Cameron Diaz.

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Re: Top Gear!

Postby frezik » Fri Jul 23, 2010 4:26 pm UTC

Too bad it's about 5 years after anybody cares about Tom Cruise . . .
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby SlyReaper » Fri Jul 23, 2010 5:02 pm UTC

frezik wrote:Too bad it's about 5 years after anybody cares about Tom Cruise . . .


Well yes, why else would he appear on Top Gear? :P
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby Various Varieties » Sun Jul 25, 2010 10:01 pm UTC

dubsola wrote:In other news, this week's Star in a Reasonably Priced Car is... dun dun dun - Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz.

Track times:
Spoiler:
Tom Cruise - 1:44.2!!!!! :shock:
1:45.2 - Cameron "Foul Mouth" Diaz

Although technically they didn't actually show the end of Cruise's lap... they kept to the camera angle that would best show off his spectacular two-wheeled bit, rather than cutting to the normal angle that normally shows them crossing the line. (Speaking of which, Diaz stopped the car after finishing her lap. They don't normally do that!)

Wikipedia points out that Cruise's time is faster than any of the F1 drivers' times (although of course they all did them in the old Liana, which was generally slower than the Lacetti was, and than the Cee'd has been so far). Some of the fastest Liana times for comparison:

1:44.3 - Rubens Barrichello
1:44.4 - The Stig
1:46.7 - Ellen MacArthur (fastest celebrity in the Liana)


The Ayrton Senna tribute was excellent. Very informative for someone like me, who, like Clarkson's son, only knows of him because of his fatal crash (although unlike him, I'm just about old enough to remember hearing about that crash on the news).

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Re: Top Gear!

Postby frezik » Mon Jul 26, 2010 2:25 am UTC

Awesomely awesome of awesomeness episode. I was disappointed in series 14, but 15 has shaped up very nicely.

Hopefully, Tom Cruise can keep Simon Cowell from taking the top spot again.
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby Plasma Man » Mon Jul 26, 2010 11:48 am UTC

That was a good episode. I was surprised they didn't make more of the race between the Touareg and the snowmobiles, but what they did show was seriously cool. The Ayrton Senna tribute at the end was fantastic, I do remember him racing and it brought back the memories.
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby ArgonV » Mon Jul 26, 2010 4:38 pm UTC

So does this make Captain Slow the presenter who has driven the fastest in a conventional (no Formula 1, no jet engine, etc) car?

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Re: Top Gear!

Postby frezik » Mon Jul 26, 2010 4:47 pm UTC

ArgonV wrote:So does this make Captain Slow the presenter who has driven the fastest in a conventional (no Formula 1, no jet engine, etc) car?


No, their test driver got it even faster, probably by having a cleaner line around the banked corner before the long straight. Also, because of restrictions to keep the sport reasonably safe, F1 cars can't go anywhere near that fast. For one thing, they can't use variable body geometry to create more downforce at speed. Also, their engines have also been forced to be significantly less powerful then they used to be (which is one reason Lewis Hamilton was so excited to drive Senna's old car).
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby jaap » Mon Jul 26, 2010 5:40 pm UTC

frezik wrote:
ArgonV wrote:So does this make Captain Slow the presenter who has driven the fastest in a conventional (no Formula 1, no jet engine, etc) car?


No, their test driver got it even faster, probably by having a cleaner line around the banked corner before the long straight. Also, because of restrictions to keep the sport reasonably safe, F1 cars can't go anywhere near that fast. For one thing, they can't use variable body geometry to create more downforce at speed. Also, their engines have also been forced to be significantly less powerful then they used to be (which is one reason Lewis Hamilton was so excited to drive Senna's old car).

I wouldn't call the Bugatti test driver a Top Gear presenter.

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Re: Top Gear!

Postby frezik » Mon Jul 26, 2010 8:36 pm UTC

jaap wrote:
frezik wrote:
ArgonV wrote:So does this make Captain Slow the presenter who has driven the fastest in a conventional (no Formula 1, no jet engine, etc) car?


No, their test driver got it even faster, probably by having a cleaner line around the banked corner before the long straight. Also, because of restrictions to keep the sport reasonably safe, F1 cars can't go anywhere near that fast. For one thing, they can't use variable body geometry to create more downforce at speed. Also, their engines have also been forced to be significantly less powerful then they used to be (which is one reason Lewis Hamilton was so excited to drive Senna's old car).

I wouldn't call the Bugatti test driver a Top Gear presenter.


Reading comprehension fail for me. Yes, he's the fastest presenter in a production car, though James did already have that title when he took the original Veyron up to top speed on the same track in S09E02.
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby MotorToad » Tue Jul 27, 2010 11:37 pm UTC

frezik wrote:Hopefully, Tom Cruise can keep Simon Cowell from taking the top spot again.
There is a bright side to it! It'd be nice to have an American in the top spot for the next series or two, though I'd have chosen a different one. :) Thinking about that, I'd really like to see them use an old British invention so they could put Paul Newman, Steve McQueen, and James Garner in the RPC.

The Senna bit was great. It's hard to express how broad his influence was. Ducati and MV Agusta both put out Senna edition motorcycles, which is like Ford and Chevy putting the same name on a Camaro and a Mustang. Personally, I don't think Senna eclipses Juan Manuel Fangio as the The Greatest of All Time, but he's head and shoulders over Shumacher. They showed several shots of the '93 season where McLaren lost their engine supplier and had to go with customer Fords (Cosworth engines, basically a development of the engine they ran in the late '60s!) and while they had a good chassis they were 80 or so horsepower down on the Renaults. Senna was still able to win a bunch of races and finish second in the points.
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby GeorgeH » Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:32 am UTC

Various Varieties wrote:Track times:
Spoiler:
Tom Cruise - 1:44.2!!!!! :shock:



Spoiler:
Add at least a few tenths for completely cutting off that last corner. :roll: The man can drive, but a more realistic time would be much closer to 1:45.

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Re: Top Gear!

Postby trebor » Wed Jul 28, 2010 7:56 am UTC

All the people wondering who the Stig is....? I never thought the Stig was one person, think about it....You're a company lending your car to someone else, you'd want your employed, insured, practiced test driver to be the one driving it if possible. Therefore it makes sense to conceal the identity of the Stig, then it can be whoever the company sends, or whoever is available.

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Re: Top Gear!

Postby el_loco_avs » Wed Jul 28, 2010 9:01 am UTC

MotorToad wrote:
frezik wrote:Hopefully, Tom Cruise can keep Simon Cowell from taking the top spot again.
There is a bright side to it! It'd be nice to have an American in the top spot for the next series or two, though I'd have chosen a different one. :) Thinking about that, I'd really like to see them use an old British invention so they could put Paul Newman, Steve McQueen, and James Garner in the RPC.

The Senna bit was great. It's hard to express how broad his influence was. Ducati and MV Agusta both put out Senna edition motorcycles, which is like Ford and Chevy putting the same name on a Camaro and a Mustang. Personally, I don't think Senna eclipses Juan Manuel Fangio as the The Greatest of All Time, but he's head and shoulders over Shumacher. They showed several shots of the '93 season where McLaren lost their engine supplier and had to go with customer Fords (Cosworth engines, basically a development of the engine they ran in the late '60s!) and while they had a good chassis they were 80 or so horsepower down on the Renaults. Senna was still able to win a bunch of races and finish second in the points.


Man, that Senna bit brought back a lot of memories. I used to be a much bigger F1 fan in his day. Was actually more of a Prost fan but damn, when he died :( Also reminded me why I hated him at the time (for the same reason as Schumi. The whole crashing on purpose thing is just trash in my eyes). For some reason some of the racers I love most (f1 and motogp) have actually taken out riders on purpose. :mrgreen:

Btw, why would you rank Senna over Schumi but not Fangio? I'm assuming the titles with 4 different teams?
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby dubsola » Wed Jul 28, 2010 10:22 am UTC

Great episode.

el_loco_avs wrote:Man, that Senna bit brought back a lot of memories. I used to be a much bigger F1 fan in his day.

Same here, actually. I found the footage of his driving pretty amazing. Might have to watch another GP soon, I've never seen the Singapore one, I wonder what it is like driving under lights.

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Re: Top Gear!

Postby MotorToad » Mon Aug 02, 2010 5:50 pm UTC

el_loco_avs wrote:Man, that Senna bit brought back a lot of memories. I used to be a much bigger F1 fan in his day. Was actually more of a Prost fan but damn, when he died :( Also reminded me why I hated him at the time (for the same reason as Schumi. The whole crashing on purpose thing is just trash in my eyes). For some reason some of the racers I love most (f1 and motogp) have actually taken out riders on purpose. :mrgreen:
I was a rare fan of both. Senna for his pure driving skill and ability to ride the edge for an entire race; Prost because he could get the most out of a race through intellect. I also despise people that auger into others, but for some irrational reason I'm a lot more upset with Schumi's diving into Hill than Senna punting Prost. Schumacher had just ruined his own chance at an "honest" championship and punted Hill to cover his error. It seemed more like Senna was "eh, fuck it, we'll just settle this without the suspense." There was a lot more history of disgruntlement between Senna and Prost, too.

el_loco_avs wrote:Btw, why would you rank Senna over Schumi but not Fangio? I'm assuming the titles with 4 different teams?
Fangio might have had fewer titles, but his domination was on another level. Fangio and Senna also were the impetus of their own dominance, where Schumi was more dependent (IMO) on his team and managers. Hell, Schumi wasn't even the fastest driver in his car when he raced Le Mans before his F1 career. =]
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby el_loco_avs » Mon Aug 02, 2010 10:15 pm UTC

MotorToad wrote: Fangio might have had fewer titles, but his domination was on another level. Fangio and Senna also were the impetus of their own dominance, where Schumi was more dependent (IMO) on his team and managers. Hell, Schumi wasn't even the fastest driver in his car when he raced Le Mans before his F1 career. =]

I'd agree if not for Michael's wins for Benetton. I was pretty young at the time but I think that was all him? Don't think Benetton did much without him?

Or is that the crew he brought into Ferrari?
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby MotorToad » Wed Aug 04, 2010 12:05 am UTC

el_loco_avs wrote:
Or is that the crew he brought into Ferrari?
That was exactly the crew he brought to Ferrari.

Several things happened in '92 and '93 to help his team's success along.
Most obvious were Prost's retirement and Senna's death.
Several engine suppliers had dropped out and only Williams had both the powerful Renault and the ability to build a car. McLaren had gone from a woeful customer Ford to a Peugeot that was barely worth its ability to keep the car over minimum weight. Most of the other engines made a list of names you've forgotten after you've read them.
Williams had convinced themselves that their car was so good that they didn't need to hire top drivers. They refused to pay what Mansell thought himself to be worth and he went to the U.S. for '93. (After their active suspension was taken away in '94 their cars weren't nearly fast enough to not need a driver.)
Refueling reappeared; this is where Brawn really came into his game. The team could think on their feet and it was a very rare thing for them to put a foot wrong. How many times have you seen a Red Bull's or McLaren's race ruined because of tire strategy this year? Hell, look what Brawn did with anchorman Honda; they didn't make a championship car out of a turd over the winter, they made a championship team.

It's not that I think Schumacher was some dolt that got lucky, but a very good driver that was raised to a great level by his excellent team. I just don't think he's a Fangio, Senna, Clark, Stewart, Surtees, Moss, type of hero driver.
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby el_loco_avs » Wed Aug 04, 2010 10:25 pm UTC

MotorToad wrote:
el_loco_avs wrote:
Or is that the crew he brought into Ferrari?
That was exactly the crew he brought to Ferrari.

Several things happened in '92 and '93 to help his team's success along.
Most obvious were Prost's retirement and Senna's death.
Several engine suppliers had dropped out and only Williams had both the powerful Renault and the ability to build a car. McLaren had gone from a woeful customer Ford to a Peugeot that was barely worth its ability to keep the car over minimum weight. Most of the other engines made a list of names you've forgotten after you've read them.
Williams had convinced themselves that their car was so good that they didn't need to hire top drivers. They refused to pay what Mansell thought himself to be worth and he went to the U.S. for '93. (After their active suspension was taken away in '94 their cars weren't nearly fast enough to not need a driver.)
Refueling reappeared; this is where Brawn really came into his game. The team could think on their feet and it was a very rare thing for them to put a foot wrong. How many times have you seen a Red Bull's or McLaren's race ruined because of tire strategy this year? Hell, look what Brawn did with anchorman Honda; they didn't make a championship car out of a turd over the winter, they made a championship team.

It's not that I think Schumacher was some dolt that got lucky, but a very good driver that was raised to a great level by his excellent team. I just don't think he's a Fangio, Senna, Clark, Stewart, Surtees, Moss, type of hero driver.



True then. Brawn is brilliant. Thanks for clearing this up :)
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby frezik » Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:55 pm UTC

I was on vacation when the last episode of the series aired, so I didn't get to see it until recently.

Every bit of that episode was classic. The original Ferrari F430 review was my favorite (especially the opening with the calm classical music playing while a supercar turned tires into smoke), but the 458 Italia film has it beat.

At the end of the show, they even managed to inject some uncharacteristic factual correctness. I guess the best thing you can say about the American car industry compared to England is that at least America still has one . . .
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby EdgarJPublius » Thu Sep 02, 2010 9:03 pm UTC

My sincere apologies. Having striven to uphold the highest principles of journalistic integrity, I must now offer a retraction of my previous post revealing the Stig to be

legendary Racer Graham Hill, or Tom McKillop, or possibly even Mr. President Stig Barak Obama.

As it has recently been revealed that the Stig in Top gear Presenter James 'Captain Slow' May, who recently gave up the position to Astronaut Michael Collins as a result of job related stress.

We can all now rest secure in the knowledge that... wait, that doesn't make any sense either! Now I'm really confused...


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Re: Top Gear!

Postby frezik » Fri Sep 03, 2010 2:14 pm UTC

No, that can't be right. Everyone knows the Stig is actually Susan Collins, Republican Senator from the Great State of Maine.
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby SlyReaper » Fri Sep 03, 2010 2:19 pm UTC

No no, I heard it was James Corden.
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby broken_escalator » Fri Sep 03, 2010 3:11 pm UTC

I always assumed the Stig was batman. It's why you never see the two in the same room.

Coincidence?
I THINK NOT! :shock:

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Re: Top Gear!

Postby SlyReaper » Fri Sep 03, 2010 3:19 pm UTC

The same can be said of James Corden.

Edit: I also heard rumours it was Jordan.
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby blu » Fri Sep 03, 2010 3:37 pm UTC

I thought it was well known that the Stig is actually James May's mom.

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Re: Top Gear!

Postby MotorToad » Sat Sep 04, 2010 2:13 pm UTC

I just wonder if the new Stig is going to be red or blue. I'm hoping for blue.
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Re: Top Gear!

Postby Amarantha » Sun Nov 28, 2010 10:38 am UTC

Managed to avoid spoilers for quite a while, but of course it couldn't last. So now I can read this thread again :P

See here for video of the top secret farm where Stigs are bred, and a reveal of the new Stig.

Spoiler:
I too was wondering what colour Stig 3.0 would be, but it makes sense that they had to stick with white, due to all the White Stig merchandise that has emerged in the last few years (types the woman wearing an "I am the Stig" t-shirt). New Stig does seem to have a few black highlights, to distinguish him from Sacked Stig.

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Re: Top Gear!

Postby ArgonV » Wed Dec 22, 2010 7:51 pm UTC

Loved the ripping on the Stig :p

And the mayor

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Re: Top Bear!

Postby dubsola » Fri Jan 07, 2011 3:52 pm UTC

I watched their Middle East expedition yesterday. It was actually pretty good - informative, and funny. But not in their usual tasteless way.

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Re: Top Bear!

Postby Amarantha » Sat Jan 08, 2011 6:08 am UTC

The final revelation made me laugh so hard my husband thought I was ill :mrgreen:

Also, I just got ArgonV's post. My usual source didn't mention the US East Coast ep, so I didn't know it existed until well after I'd seen the Middle East one.


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