The Car Show came back this week full of entertaining segments and an array of vehicles to satiate our automotive appetites. During this episode, John Salley was able to fall in line with an Indy 500 pit crew to see what it takes to drive one of the racers and Matt Farah and Adam Corolla take a couple of luxury SUVs through the ringer to see which of them is the best for hauling ass and groceries. Matt Farah also gets a chance to take the Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder Performante out for a spin at the Monticello Motor Club, while all of the hosts get to meet the most interesting, and rather odd, Lamborghini owner ever.
Along with the usual mini-segments provided for every episode, this week we also got to take part in The Car Show Repair Shop where viewers call in and ask the hosts about problems they are having with their cars. If you think these people are weird, try listening to some of their problems.
Hit the jump for full details on The Car Show: Season 1 Episode 5.
Zero to 60
This week’s topics for the 0-60 segment included Ford killing off the Lincoln Towncar and offering the MKT Towncar as a replacement and Volkswagen’s decision to man up the Beetle in the hopes of increasing sales. Some of the more interesting discussions included Jeep’s new 3.6 V6 engine for their Wrangler, Alfa Romeo’s return to the US, and Tesla’s new SUV.
Jeep’s decision to offer a new engine for their Wrangler stems from the low torque provided on the vehicle. Is more torque really necessary for this type of off-road vehicle? Probably not. The Car Show guys had a witty comment about it, saying that now the Wrangler can "roll faster." We tend to agree.
Alfa Romeo’s return to the US seems to be highly anticipated, but whether or not their move over to our side of the pond will be successful is another story. This company has not sold a car in the US since 1995, but their goal of selling 500,000 cars worldwide by 2014 made the decision to come back rather simple. The guys left it off by called Alfa’s new 4C GTA the "Cayman killer of 2012."
Tesla has announced their new crossover which will debut by the end of 2011. Didn’t they have the Tesla Model S that needed to debut first? The new crossover uses the same powertrain as the Model S, but for whatever reason, the bigger model will be served up to the public before the sedan.
Behind the Wheel
This week’s Behind the Wheel segment took John Salley behind the scene of the Indy 500 as part of motor racing driver, Townsend Bell’s team. Bell shared a few interesting tidbits about what it takes to be an Indy racer, including the fact that the average man is 5’9’ and weighs 190lbs. Bell is a little taller than that, coming in at 5’11", and weighs in at 165 lbs. In fact, if a driver weighs more than 165 lbs, he gets a weight penalty. Intense.
The they went into the physical aspect of the race. A driver has to be extremely fit in order to drive a race car, which is similar to driving an F16 jet fighter. Just holding the steering wheel is like holding on to a medicine ball for two straight hours in an 150 degree cockpit. Then there’s the issue of g-force. Drivers must be able to withstand over 3 Gs while taking corners.
After that experience, Townsend Bell came onto the set to answer a few questions. Turns out, he didn’t do so well in the race, crashing his car in lap 158, which resulted in trashing the $1 million dollar ride. Ouch.
Porsche Cayenne vs BMW X5M
Say what you want about luxury SUV models that have a little kick, but this segment was hilarious. Adam Corolla and Matt Farah decided they need to help out "rich suburban housewives" pick out the best luxury SUV. The Porsche Cayenne and BMW X5M were their contenders, but first they had to pack it full of groceries.
When the SUVs were filled to the brim, the hosts took them around the Willow Springs Track in California to see what kind of speed these cars had. Their speeds reached in excess of 130 mph, leaving both hosts extremely pleased with the SUVs that they described as strong enough for a man, but built for a MILF.
Hauling groceries at high speeds was a successful task for both models, but where the BMW excelled just a bit is in its off-roading capabilities. This escapade through rough terrain was purely for laughs, but the BMW X5M was successful in keeping its groceries contained, while the Porsche left Farah with a big mess to clean up. That being said, Farah said he drove both vehicles and liked the Porsche better because of its lightweight feel, stemming from the 400lbs weight loss the Cayenne endured in comparison to its previous version.
The Car Show Repair Shop
The Repair Shop segment allowed viewers to call in with their automotive repair questions and have them answered by The Car Show panel. These people were screened wonderfully because the group of people that called ranged from savvy to, well, not and from beautiful to, well, not. One guy that called had the same problem for 33 years, his Volkswagen doesn’t go in reverse. You’d think sometime in those 33 years, the guy would have gone in to get it fixed, but nope. Adam sent him off with these parting words, "Shave the beard, sell the bong, and buy a Fiesta."
Interview: Thomas Jones
Thomas Jones is a running back for the Kansas City Chiefs and a major car enthusiast. Since entering the NFL 11 years ago, Jones has owned between 15-20 cars, including a Rolls Royce Phantom, a Bentley Continental GT, a yellow Lamborghini Murcielago, a Dodge Viper, an Aston Martin DB4, and the list goes on. He even owned a Ferrari 360 Spyder that he purchased in Chicago Bear orange when he took them to Super Bowl XLI.
Currently he owns four vehicles, one of them being an Aston Martin Vanquish.
Car Review: Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder Performante
Matt Farah is one lucky SOB. This week, he was given the privilege of getting behind the wheel of a Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder Performante at the Monticello Motor Club in New York. He took the 570 HP AWD mid-engined supercar around the track enough times to make us green with envy, and then the car was brought onto the set.
At the set, Dan Neil offered up a little math lesson, calculating that for the 143 lbs lost for the Spyder Performante costs the owner about $140 per pound. This was calculated using a price of $250,000 for the Performante and $230,000 for the standard Spyder.
The Strangest Lamborghini Owner in the World
Okay, this guy took creepy to a whole new level, but his story was really interesting. Richard Jordan was going through a rough patch in his life and when his fiancee left him, he decided to hit the road. He sold four cars, his workshop, and a house and bought a Lamborghini to tour the country. He spent the next two years in his Lambo, getting 53 speeding tickets in the process. In one year, this guy clocked 91,807 miles on his Lamborghini. Now, the car is set up as a piece of art in his living room and his new ride is a motorcycle.
One for the Road
This week’s One for the Road segment covered backup beepers. You know, the loud annoying beeps you hear on garbage trucks when they are backing up. These beeps are 117 decibels which is comparable to an ambulance siren or a chainsaw.
That’s it for now. Stay tuned for details on next week’s episode of The Car Show.