TopGear is the most qualitative tv show we have been blessed to see on TV. If you do not know about it yet, you have a lot to catch up with.

Not one to back away from the bombardment of complaints they’ve received over the years, the producers of Top Gear have returned fire at Tesla over the latter’s surprising lawsuit against the popular British show.

Tesla is suing Top Gear for libel and malicious falsehood over a review of the Tesla Roadster that happened a little over two years ago. For their part, Top Gear is not one to lay down without a fight, or in this case, a response to Tesla’s claims. So the show’s executive producer, Andy Wilman, went on the offensive and released a letter explaining their side of the story.

It’s not the first time that Top Gear has been in hot water, but there seems to be a certain sense of seriousness with this particular lawsuit and we won’t be surprised if the British show sees this case all the way through the courts, as opposed to their usual routine of witty banter on one of their episodes.

To read about Andy Wilman’s response to Tesla’s claims, proceed after the jump.

Source: Top Gear

For all the fun and hilarity Top Gear has given us for the better part of a decade, the show has also been a lightning rod of controversy as evidenced by the countless number of complaints and law suits the show – and BBC as a network – has received from just about everybody it has ‘offended’ since the show became a worldwide phenomenon.

Apparently, one of the recipient’s of Top Gear’s sometimes brash and swaggering wrath has decided to bite back.

Two years ago, the British show caused quite a stir on one of their shows for their sharp and pointed criticisms of the Tesla Roadster . Understandably so, it didn’t sit well with the folks over at Tesla Motors and after a few back and forth barbs with the British show, the California-based automaker decided to turn the other cheek – with the strong arm of a lawsuit.

According to Tesla, Top Gear’s whole review of the Roadster was predicated on their pre-existing grounds that electric cars don’t work – if you watch the video, you’re going to notice James May tease a future segment later on in the episode, debunking the notion of electric cars being the future of the auto industry – and in turn, giving viewers a distorted image of the Roadster as a completely unreliable and irrelevant car.

Tesla’s VP of Communications, Ricardo Reyes, elaborated on the issue through the company’s blog site. In it, he wrote that “the show’s script, written before the cars were tested, has host Jeremy Clarkson concluding the segment by saying, "in the real world, it doesn’t seem to work."

Top Gear has ruffled a lot of feathers on its show, but Tesla seems to be taking this very seriously. Whether BBC decides to engage in a sartorial volley with the American automaker is totally in their character, but in this instance, it looks like they may have to play nice and put on a serious look before facing an automaker that’s throwing libel charges at them.

Or, they could just avoid all the hoopla and just stop rebroadcasting the episode in question and set the record straight about the car. But knowing Top Gear and BBC, what are the chances of that happening?

Check out the controversial Top Gear segment after the jump.

Source: Tesla Motors

A lot of us were too young to remember this movie, but for those that had a chance to see George Miller’s Mad Max movie, you might have caught sight of Mel Gibson driving around in a Ford Falcon Ford Falcon XB GT351 Interceptor. Thirty-two years after both Gibson and the Interceptor became Hollywood royalty - well we’re going to use the term royalty loosely with Gibson considering his latest personal antics -, an Australian group headed by Ford and Top Gear Australia magazine is in the process of developing two new concept studies of the Interceptor, or as we should say, a present-day take on Mad Max’s bad-ass ride.

Ford Australia formed a group of designers headlined by Todd Willing, the company’s chief of design for Asia, Pacific, and African passenger cars. Led by Willing, the team conceptualized and designed a number of design studies using the original Interceptor as the basis for their creations. In the end, the two best studies – designed by Nima Nourian and Simon Brook – were chosen for the next stage in the decision-making process.

The two designs will then be featured on a future issue of Top Gear Australia where readers will get the opportunity to vote on their preferred design, which would then be turned into a full-fledged scale model that’s scheduled to be revealed later this year.

Is this a case of nostalgia or a marketing ploy to drum up interest on what appears to be the fourth chapter of the Mad Max franchise, tentatively titled “Fury Road”? We can’t say for sure that both items are connected to each other, but it is a little coincidental, to say the least.

Top Gear ’s success spreads far and wide, so much so that it’s already produced offsprings both in the US and in Australia. Now, it looks like another version is getting closer and closer to production.

The latest version of the successful British car show appears to be in China, with reports coming out that the pilot episode has already been produced. There isn’t any word yet on how the pilot episode ran, but it appears that the Chinese version will at least attempt to carry the humorous format of the original version. For the pilot, the three-man crew led by comedian Cao Yunjin, apparently tried to do a test between a Cadillac and a donkey to see which could push millstones around a farmyard more effectively.

Despite the dry attempt at catching a few laughs, the Chinese version of Top Gear won’t be as over-the-edge as the original British show. In an interview with China’s Global Times, the host mentioned that partly because of stringent censorship in the country, Top Gear China will not be as over-the-top as its British counterpart with stunts like say pushing a Maserati over a three-story building and smashing it.

"It may be too much violence for a fun program in China," Cao said. "We will do more localized fun stuff."

We haven’t had a chance to see a preview of Top Gear China – not that we’d understand it anyway – but we’re all hoping that it would be successful enough to be developed into a full-fledged show. At least if they stick to the ‘fun’ formula that has turned the show into one of the most iconic TV programs in the world today.

Source: Global Times

Top Gear USA received some good news recently after History decided to pick up the option for a second season of the US version of the hit British auto show, Top Gear .

This comes as a huge sigh of relief for the people behind the show as they seemed to have taken the pressure of producing a show amidst the enormous shadow of its British counterpart incredibly well. History, which is the new name for the History Channel, has ordered ten new episodes for season two with production set to begin sometime in the spring. No word yet on whether changes will be made for the second season, although the three hosts – Adam Ferrara, Rutledge Wood, and Tanner Foust – are all expected to be back.

The channel that carries Top Gear USA also announced that for the first season, Top Gear USA attracted a total audience of 60 million viewers for the entire season, with the show attracting a fairly young demographic, which History announced as being the youngest viewers of any series the network has ever shown.

Hit the jump to see what Top Gear UK thinks of the U.S. version’s success so far.

Source: History

The blokes over at Top Gear are starting to make a habit of being spotted in obscure settings all over the world. Guess they’re really taking advantage of all those frequent flyer miles, eh?

A little over a month ago during their taping of the show’s Christmas Special, the whole crew of Top Gear was spotted in Israel sporting their own versions of custom drop-top roadsters on their way to meeting the baby Jesus in Bethlehem. We all know how that turned out.

This time around, the troika of Clarkson, Hammond, and May have been spotted in Albania. That’s right. Albania.We can only assume that the three chaps were taping an episode of the show in the country, after word leaked courtesy of Albarent, a local rental agency that was responsible for their transportation. According to Albarent, as soon as the hosts and the crew arrived at Tirana Airport, the rental agency went ahead and picked them before driving them to Saranda on the “Albanian Riviera” with a rental fleet including a Mercedes S350 VIP-LOUNGE, Hyundai H-1 VIP-LOUNGE 11+1 Minibus, and an IRISBUS IVECO Tourist Class 19+1 Minibus. Wow, that’s quite a motley crew.

Unfortunately, details as to what happened on their Albanian adventure have been kept under wraps. For us to find out, we’re going to have to tune in to the show, which quite frankly, we’ve never had a problem doing.

Source: Albarent

The presenters over at Top Gear have seen and driven just about every supercar that has been produced for the last decade, so it’s not surprising that the fastest lap times around their race track belong to the fastest and most powerful machines on the planet.

The list is impressive, to say the least. The Bugatti Veyron Super Sport sits on top with the Gumpert Apollo , Ascari A10 , and Noble M600 following suit. Not your everyday Ferraris , people.

But as the course of history has shown us, once in a while, a modern day David arrives with a rock and a sling in hand to topple the mighty Goliaths in one fell swoop.

Weighing only 550 kg and powered by a 3.0-liter V8 engine that produces 500 horsepower, this David is by no means a pushover. It’s the Ariel Atom V8 500 and it sure made quite an impression on Top Gear .

Hit the jump for the record-breaking details!

Source: You Tube

As if we didn’t have any more reason to get all geeked up over the 16th season of Top Gear, the lovely folks over at the BBC were kind enough to give us a peek of what to expect from Clarkson, Hammond, and May.

Top Gear ’s 16th season is set to hit the tubes on Sunday, January 23, 2011, at 8 pm on BBC2 and BBC HD with the show airing in the States at a later date, that is unless you decide to stream the show on the Internet. As you can expect, you can take it to the bank that they’ve got tons of surprises in store for us.

Now we don’t know the full details behind the show, but we’ve gotten a glimpse of some of the things on tap for season no. 16, including reviews on the new Ariel Atom and the Skoda Yeti , a segment on the proper way to destroy a Volkswagen Beetle , a classic dust-up between the Porsche 959 and the Ferrari F40 , a segment involving submarines, James May in tights, and landing a helicopter on top of a car.

At some point, there’s also going to be the return of our favorite test driver, the Stig , somewhere in there.

Rest assured, season 16 of Top Gear is expected to be one for the books, and quite frankly, coming from Clarkson, Hammond and May, we don’t expect anything less.

Posted on by Alexander + 13

Looks like the Top Gear trio is causing trouble again. A few months after Jeremy Clarkson was blamed for a few idiots over in the UK flipping a Reliant over on its side shortly after seeing Clarkson do it on Top Gear, the crew is back in the headlines for yet another fouled up attempt at hilarity.

Apparently a few fans of the show are up in arms about the men donning burkas on theirChristmas special. Burkas are a piece of clothing worn by Muslim women that cover them completely from head to toe, with the exception of their eyes. The men wore the burkas during their Christmas special as a "disguise" so that they could travel through the city without being "recognized."

The Twitter lines simply lighted up after the scene with many people taking offense to the choice of attire. One viewer said, "This is probably the worst top gear special. Y the f*** r they wearing burkas!!?" Another added, "Top gear – the burka joke wasn’t funny."

Still some fans came to the UK show’s defense by saying, "Why are so many people offended. It’s just a piece a clothing. The Burka is not in the Quaran at all. If people are so offended, why don’t they switch over the TV?"

In all honesty, we don’t think Top Gear intended to offend anyone. This was just their way of "blending in" so that no one would recognize them. It’s the equivalent to the men throwing on some kilts if they decided to do a show in Scotland or a cowboy hat to drive through the state of Texas. Of course, it probably wouldn’t have been so bad had Clarkson not made a comment about seeing a Muslim woman sporting a G-string under her gown a few months ago.

Considering the excruciatingly long distance and the myriad of unflattering conditions these three cars were subjected to, it’s a complete miracle that the three drop-top sports cars Top Gear used in their “Christmas Special” made it all the way to their destination in Bethlehem.

Though there were some mishaps and unplanned detours along the 1,200-mile journey from Iraq, Clarkson’s Mazda MX-5 , Hammond’s Fiat Barchetta , and May’s BMW Z3 , lasted long enough to see the three deliver their gifts of gold, frankincense, and apparently, a Nintendo DS.

As a result of successfully completing the journey of the Three Wise Men, the three sports cars are now on display in the World of Top Gear exhibition at Beaulieu, UK.

They’re not in the best of conditions, to say the least. Clarkson’s MX-5 has bullet holes on its doors as a result of an experiment gone bad, Hammond’s Barchetta experienced radiator problems, and May’s Z3…well, it fared the worst of the three with a laundry list of problems. But like true steeds dedicated to bringing their masters to their destination, the three sports cars battled dirt roads, desert dunes, and even an impromptu NASCAR-style race, to find a way to get to their destination.

So to give honor to these noble four-wheeled sheets of metal, the three sports cars have been placed in the World of Top Gear Exhibition to join its fellow brethren of cars that have been used over the years in different challenges by the cast of the show.

It’s a well-placed recognition considering what they’ve been through.

Source: Top Gear

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