In this episode, Adam Corolla (comedian and car enthusiast), Dan Neil (automotive columnist for The Wall Street Journal), John Salley (4-time NBA Champion and actor), and Matt Farah (SmokingTire.com) take part in a number of segments that made us laugh at loud, literally. Mixed in with the good times and "Lambo-quality comedy," the guys take part in a test comparing the automated driving versus actual driving in a 2007 BMW 328i sedan, a comparison of the Audi R8 and the Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport, and an interview with racing legend, Pete Brock.
The fun doesn’t stop there as the boys go through their 0-60 and Adam’s America segments, as well as a trip to North Carolina for some dirt track racing.
Hit the jump for details on The Car Show: Season 1 Episode Three.
Zero to 60
This week’s 0-60 segment covered a number of topics, including the probability of the Mercedes SLS AMG Roadster outselling the coupe (like it did in the 50s), the Nissan Leaf’s less-than-expected sales, and Toyota’s exoneration of its unintended acceleration woes. The guys also discussed how Pontiac’s only decent - hence its descent into nothingness - is the Pontiac G8, but it is only sold to police officers. One of the bigger stories was the fact that the government may be raising the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) to 62% in the next few years. The plan is for the fleet average to be 56.2mpg by 2017.
BMW has thrown in $1 million in technology into a $40K 328i sedan in order to give the car the ability to be electronically driven. Fighting what Corolla calls the "Navigeddon," the Car Show gents head over to the Laguna Seca Raceway to see who can drive better; the man or the machine. Corolla and Salley were chosen to sit behind the wheel of the automated vehicles, while Neil and Farah were given the keys to the standard BMW. Corolla seemed to not know what to do, but Salley chatted on his phone, put on his chapstick, and all around relaxed during the ride. Basically, he did all of the distracted driving habits that has prompted automakers to research automated driving to begin with. Obviously, the automated vehicles were slower, but supposedly the BMW 328i sedan with the Track Trainer kit was only created as a teaching tool for the track. The computers in the vehicle are programmed to follow a preset lap done by a professional driver.
In an effort to bring even more balance and comedy to the show, there were a few smaller segments that didn’t really have a purpose, but they were really fun to watch. The first is Adam’s America where Corolla took off to Pomona, California to interview the locals at an automotive swap meet. The highlight of this segment is when Corolla crammed himself into a go-cart and drove away.
The second smaller segment took Dan Neil to Harris Motor Speedway in North Carolina to take part in some dirt track racing. Neil was given a car and some practice laps where he was just slipping and sliding all over the place, then the line was drawn and the actual race began. Neil basically made some rookie mistakes and had to be taken off the track behind a tow truck.
Interview: Pete Brock
This week’s interview gave Adam Corolla the chance to talk to a man that he wishes was his father: Racing legend and former racing car designer, Pete Brock. Corolla is such a fan that he even owns the first two racing cars driven by Brock and will be driving one in an upcoming race.
After a few questions and banter, the crew unveiled a tribute car of the Daytona Coupe. For those who don’t know, Brock won the FIA World GT Championship in 1965 behind the wheel of this car. In fact, he even designed this vehicle alongside Carroll Shelby. Apparently, this tribute vehicle was built by Hi-Tech Automotive in South Africa.
At the end of the segment, Brock was challenged to a slot car race against John Salley. The ridiculous race ended quickly with Brock as the winner.
American muscle or European exotic? That is the question Matt Farah set out to answer when he was given an Audi R8 and a Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport on the Willow Springs Raceway in California.
The Audi R8 was clearly Farah’s favorite, describing it as the perfect balance between exotic and practical, luxury and sport, and track star and the comfort of a fat, bald man. After a brief intro, Farah got behind the wheel of the mid-engined V8 powered sports car to tackle the Corvette Grand Sport.
The Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport came onto the scene with automotive journalist, Aaron Robinson. Robinson described the Corvette as a vehicle with great handling and preferred it over the R8. The Grand Sport is powered by a front-engined 6.2L LS3 V8 bringing 436 HP to the rear wheels.
In the end, the result of the race was not given, but both drivers had a passion for their vehicles and would not deter from their opinions. We think Farah said it best when he said, " Germans do muscle better than the Americans." We have to agree; we absolutely love the Audi R8.
This week’s One for the Road had to do with motorcycles purchased from a cop auction. Apparently, it really gets on Corolla’s nerves when assholes buy their motorcycles from a cop auction, along with the officer’s helmet, jacket, the whole nines yards. These power-hungry imitators then drive 53 mph in a 60 mph zone, fooling people into thinking they are a real police officer. Know what happens when a cop goes 53 mph? Every one else does too.
Stay tuned for details on next week’s episode of The Car Show.